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, January 10, 2018

Sentimental City Romance -- Uchiwamome(うちわもめ)

Not quite a follow-up to my preceding article today involving EPO but considering that a shout-out was given to the rock band Sentimental City Romance(センチメンタル・シティ・ロマンス)and I hadn't written about those guys in many a moon, I decided to do a bit of digging.

Now my first mention of Sentimental City Romance came through their contribution to Mariya Takeuchi's(竹内まりや)inaugural album "Beginning" from 1978 but it was nikala who wrote the first article on the band exclusively when she wrote about their 1980s song "Flight Tonight". As was her experience, I had only found out about them through the pages of "Japanese City Pop". And as she wrote down, in contrast to the cool City Pop of "Flight Tonight", the early part of their discography in the 1970s was kinda straddling the line between country and rock n' roll.

So I went way back and checked out their debut single from July 1975 (SCR had actually formed in 1973), "Uchiwamome" (Family Problems). Yup, it's definitely not City Pop but maybe something more akin to the roots rock of Creedence Clearance Revival, although I still have to listen to more of their stuff during that decade to get a better idea, of course.

Vocalist and guitarist Tokuo Nakano(中野督夫)wrote and composed their first single, and the topic is also notable in that it goes into the protagonist fretting about an upcoming family reunion that he's not too thrilled about attending. However, any conflicts hinted in the lyrics seem mild enough that the song could also be about a young man being introduced to his prospective in-laws. In any case, it has that sound of a good-time tune that would be included in the Japanese New Music of the 1970s.


  1. This sounds like some lost song from the first Happy End album.

    The first Happy End album made me do a double take thinking it was from one of those West Coast late 60s country rock bands - until they started singing in Japanese of course.

    The song Kakurenbo is perfect driving music when you're going down the northern California coast line on the SR-1(formerly the Pacific Coast Highway) or the I-5 through the beautiful, natural canyons of southern California.

    1. Hello, Chasing Showa.

      I'm sure it must have been quite the introduction to New Music when Happy End came on the scene. And look what happened when the band broke up. Everyone in the group made their contributions in providing some new forms of pop music in Japan.


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