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.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Hayabusa -- Romantic Tokyo(ロマンティック東京)


On the news tonight, CTV told me that the top 4 safest cities on the planet were:

1. Tokyo
2. Osaka
3. Singapore
4. Toronto

Yeah, my hometown is the 4th-safest city on Earth for 2017., probably, it is my well-honed cynicism and the supposed self-effacing nature of Canadians, but Mr. Survey....YA GOTTA BE KIDDING ME! Really? Pedestrians are getting killed and injured by cars almost nightly, there seems to be regular gun battles in the northwest of the city and certain other neighbourhoods, and now I'm starting to think that any Tim Hortons coffee shop past sunset gains a bullseye. Maybe we're a distant No. 4 way down below Singapore. And perhaps we're not quite as bullet-ridden as Chicago but still that ranking for us is hard to believe.


Anyways, enough about my minuscule rant. I can believe that Tokyo would get the No. 1 ranking although lifelong citizen students over there have confided in me that the megalopolis is getting more dangerous. I guess it really depends on one's point of view. But for me, there are some really nice areas at night in The Big Sushi. I loved walking through shiny glittery Ginza, Akasaka, and even slightly seedy East Shinjuku and Ueno.

(short version)

Therefore, with that prelude, I bring you "Romantic Tokyo" by Mood Kayo trio Hayabusa(はやぶさ). I first saw Hikaru(ヒカル), Yamato(ヤマト)and Shouya(ショウヤ)on an episode of NHK's "Gogo Uta"(ごごウタ...Afternoon Songs), the afternoon kayo program (I will have to write about that one someday soon), and they performed something rather offbeat which I will also explain in a future article. However, I want to write about a song that has been part of their raison d'etre since Hayabusa first started in 2011.

(karaoke version)

Only Hikaru is from Yokohama but Hayabusa's first three singles centered on the bayside city. "Romantic Tokyo", their 4th single from October 2014, shifted things to the capital, and it is truly a romantic musical ride through Tokyo. You can just imagine a mature couple tripping the light fantastic through the various neighbourhoods peeled off in the song.

(empty karaoke version)

Tsubasa Kazu(かず翼)provided the lyrics while Masayoshi Tsuruoka(鶴岡雅義)of the veteran Mood Kayo group Masayoshi Tsuruoka & Tokyo Romantica(鶴岡雅義と東京ロマンチカ)composed the song with that old-fashioned Latin flavour of the genre from the 1960s. Old is truly new again. "Romantic Tokyo" made it all the way up to No. 19 on Oricon.



  1. Hi J-Canuck,

    That was quite an amusing tirade there. Looks like I gotta watch out if and when I do go to a Tim Hortons - their donuts were much better than I expected.

    For the ranking on safest cities, I'd assume that the Scandinavian cities would come out on top, but I guess not...? (I too have some doubt about this Mr Survey...) At the same time, I find it rather hard to believe that Tokyo's higher ranking than Singapore, considering how many times I have been warned about wandering around the, as you would say, Big Sushi, alone... And then again, with the recent spate cat abusers and occasional berserk elderly slashers in the now nationally infamous northern heartlands, maybe we deserve that 3rd place.

    As for Hayabusa: Wow, I don't think I've ever seen them in normal-looking suits until now. They're usually in some weird getup - like cowboys, out of others. They look more spiffy like this.

    1. Hello, Noelle.

      Yeah, and to add insult to injury, there was another incident last night where a teen decided to spray a round of bullets at a group of adults who were congregating on a driveway discussing how to plan a funeral for a teen who had been shot to death last week. There are probably quite a few people here wondering how we ever deserved a No. 4 ranking.

      I also thought that the Scandinavian cities would have been in the Top 5. Terrorism in the major European cities aside, aren't places like Oslo and Copenhagen safer? I never heard about those incidents in Singapore, though.

      That appearance of Hayabusa last week was indeed them in their cowboy outfits. I hope that wasn't out of desperation for attention. I do like them in their Mood Kayo getups.

    2. Well, ain't that case ironic. Seems like Canada being too nice and polite for its own good is but an image. That makes me wonder where did the Scandinavian cities place on the list.

      As for Singapore's incidents, I guess they were more of local buzz. Everyone seems to live on whatever drama that pops up as stuff like that doesn't happen too often... also I don't think anyone likes a cat abuser. Doesn't help that the bizarre happenings tend to usually be concentrated in that one neighborhood (in the past couple of years, at least). I wonder if there'll be less of that now since the newly appointed president resides there.

    3. We're generally friendly and polite but definitely not goody-two-shoes...especially during playoff seasons for any of our team sports. :)

      As a member of a family who had a cat for many years, I couldn't predict what I would have been capable of if someone had gone after Mako-chan. To be honest, he and I didn't get along too well but family is still family.

    4. As expected, video blocked in "your country". But I really like the concept of Enka/mood Kayo groups that sing like groups (both styles would work well acapella, but I dream). Are they similar to 純烈 at all muscially? I'll have to check non-YouTube sites for vids .........
      My club used to go to Toronto almost every summer from 96-around 2006, then sporadically (Centre Island dragonboat races) and while it's a lovely city, we absolutely noticed a substantial increase in homeless people and the slide towards "New Yorkness". A sort of shabbily-genteel look. I concur whole-heartedly with you - even look cross-ways at any of my cats is your request for an a**whoopin.

    5. Hello, T-cat.

      I've seen Junretsu and yeah, I think it and Hayabusa share some traits including some of the choreography.

      I'm not sure if there has been a precipitous decrease in the quality of life in Toronto but the homelessness has been around for a few decades now. Ironically, as the fame of the city grew, the ills of it also grew including the price of housing.


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