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.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Junretsu -- Propose(プロポーズ)

One of the other NHK kayo kyoku-based shows that I've seen is the Friday afternoon "Gogo Uta"(ごごウタ)hosted by tarento/actor Kazuki Kosakai(小堺一機), and on the episode that I caught a couple of days ago, the Mood Kayo chorus group Junretsu(純烈)made an appearance.

Noelle was the first to talk about this group which seems to be a blend of Arashi(嵐)+ Mood Kayo so you can take a look at her article on "Konya wa Romantic"(今夜はドラマチック)for the details on the guys. However, I wanted to talk here about the song that I heard on Friday, "Propose" which is their latest single from Valentine's Day this year. In fact, for some reason, the powers-that-be have released Type A and Type B recordings for the single.

What I like about "Propose" is how the melody by Kohei Miyuki(幸耕平)has that old-fashioned Mood Kayo feeling combined with a big and brassy horn arrangement which almost takes things into the funky side of urban contemporary. And as Noelle hinted in her article, Junretsu isn't satisfied to merely stand around the microphones and stoically sing like the old Mood Kayo groups; leader Kazuyoshi Sakai(酒井一圭)and company like to use their choreography as well.

Smart idea to release "Propose" on Valentine's Day, too. Miyuki also wrote the lyrics which talk about the encounter of a lonely man and a woman who's afraid of love to bring about a romantic relationship together. You can pretty much squeeze a bucketful of valentines out of this song.

Speaking about songwriter Miyuki, he's had an interesting career. In the early 1970s, he was a percussionist for the rock band Tranzam(トランザム)before getting into songwriting for aidoru beginning in the later part of the decade. It looks like for the past number of years, though, he has been focusing on creating songs for enka/Mood Kayo singers.


  1. Hello, J-Canuck.

    Gotta say that I'm liking "Propose" a lot; definitely picking this one up on the next trip to Japan. It's nice that we're able to hear all of the members nowadays - used to be just Yujiro Shirakawa 90% of the time. Also loving the MV with that silly twist.

    Yup, Junretsu's now doing multiple versions of their singles too. Perhaps it's because they're getting more and more popular, or because it's a way to stay on the charts for a longer time; more sales might equal to a chance on the Kohaku.

    Well, anyway, looking at the guys all lined up at the end of the MV with their proposals, as much as I like Ryohei Odai, I'm going with Sakai. A house is great, flowers are sweet, and a ring is pretty, but a sincerely presented baguette definitely takes the cake! :)

    1. Hi, Noelle!

      "Propose" is one of those songs that could herald a small revival of Mood Kayo. Enjoyable song, a group of bidanshi and choreography. Considering that how some of the enka veterans have been leaving the Kohaku recently, perhaps it's time to put more folks such as Junretsu into the mix.

      Being a foodie, I'll take the baguette anytime with a steaming cup of coffee! :)

      Ah, your article for "Akai Hana" by Naomi Chiaki received a request for translation of its lyrics. I'm not sure how your translation powers are and I know that you've explained the general story, but if you like, I can handle the translation.

    2. Hi there, J-Canuck.

      I do hope that Junretsu will get their chance on the Kohaku for, as you said, it's time to bring (Mood) kayokyoku back into the show. I can imagine that they'd inject some humour into their performance.

      Thanks for letting me know about the request. And yeah, please go ahead with the translation of "Akai Hana". My translating powers aren't great and they can be rather "plus or minus". Thanks (again) for the help! :)

    3. Yeah, I think Junretsu can bring some flair into the appearance.

      OK on the translation for "Akai Hana" then. Just managed to finish up my work a bit early today so I can tackle the request.


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