I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Keiko Tohyama -- My Guy ~ Cafe Sign(マイ・ガイ)

It took me the purchase of "Japanese City Pop" to find out that R&B singer Hitomi "Penny" Tohyama(当山ひとみ)even existed, and just out of pure luck, browsing through YouTube unearthed her older sister, Keiko "Myrah" Tohyama(当山恵子). There was some more digging for me to find out that Myrah was indeed Penny's older sister.

The anthropological dig continued as I gradually found out that perhaps the elder Tohyama released one single and one least. The one single apparently was released in 1984 and was titled "My Guy ~ Cafe Sign", a mellow ballad with a hint of Motown in its music and lyrics by Yoshihiro Yonekura(米倉良弘), the same fellow who came up with "Sexy Robot", Penny's song that I wrote about last night.There was one other person involved in the lyrics but unfortunately I couldn't read his kanji due to the size of the photo of the liner.

Myrah has a slightly higher voice than Penny, and she definitely has got that feeling of some of that 70s soul. "My Guy" is also a track on that first (and perhaps sole) album "What Can I Do?". From what I've read, both the single and album are the rarest of the rare.


  1. Good evening J-C: maybe not quite as rare (albeit expen$ive); there's a copy for 14,800 on There is also a nice label shot that may have the lyricists in it; but the album-back shot is *almost* legible ..... I suppose you'll just have to buy it ;)

    1. Morning, T-cat.

      14,800 yen is somewhat too rich for my blood. :) If I can hear a few more tracks and if Tower Records decides to a re-master for a much less insane price, I'd consider it.

  2. The R&B tracks seem to be a throwback to the late 1970s as opposed to the year (1984) it was released.

    Yes, that's a good thing!

    I will admit that her voice is not as good as her imouto.

    However she can get funkier than old dirty buttcrack too.

    1. Hi there.

      I think you forgot to mention "old dirty buttcrack following 3-bean salad night".

      That's one of the interesting things of some Japanese music, anime tunes, in particular. The composers seemed to create melodies that sounded 5 to even 10 years earlier than the release date.

      BTW, how did you find out about the Tohyama sisters?

  3. Ewww!

    Okay, I did deserve that deeper exposition of my aforementioned comment about buttcrack.

    Anyway I found out about Penny the same way I've found a lot stuff. That mysterious algorithm that's behind those Youtube Recommendations.

    However, I found about Myrah from a recent article on the "Light Mellow on the web ~turntable diary~" blog that you mentioned in a post awhile back.

    I have since lost a lot of my ever shrinking mortality exploring that rabbit hole of a site.

    After that I went looking for more information and found a number of sites talking about her in other countries and/or languages.

    Then, obviously, your post came up and here I am...losing a lot of my ever shrinking mortality exploring this rabbit hole of a site.

    I blame you both! ;p

    1. Always a pleasure bringing new victims into the Dark Side of Japanese City Pop! :)

    2. There is no dark side of Japanese City Pop. It is all wonderful, special and golden!


Feel free to provide any comments (pro or con). Just be civil about it.