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, April 5, 2018

Kazuhito Murata -- Denwa shite mo(電話しても)

I am grateful to nikala for writing about singer-songwriter Kazuhito Murata(村田和人)all the way back in 2015. As she wrote in "Ippon no Ongaku"(一本の音楽), Tatsuro Yamashita(山下達郎)acted as a mentor to him when Murata came on the scene in the late 1970s, and there is indeed a bit of that Tats in how he performs. But I think the Tokyo native seems to have been more focused in the laidback J-AOR scene; I could forever see Murata in an Aloha shirt performing on the sands of Waikiki Beach.

Murata debuted with "Denwa shite mo" (Even If I Call) in April 1982, a sunny and mellow number punctuated with a really plucky guitar. Written and composed by the singer, if I've gotten an accurate reading of his lyrics, he gives a whimsical account of someone who kinda wonders whether his romance can last only to state that he and his significant other will meet again tomorrow. Strangely enough, I can envision a blissful couple listening to this on the beach so the protagonist's worries are probably more tongue-in-cheek than anything else. But even a solo unit like myself is enjoying "Denwa shite mo"; I especially like how the song shifts gear in the middle.

"Denwa shite mo" has something in common with tunes such as microstar's "Yuugure Girl"(夕暮れガール)and Cindy's "Watashi Tachi wo Shinjiteite"(私達を信じていて)in that it's also been given the Vaporwave/Future Funk treatment through Artzie Music. But you know, I will always go with the original.

I wish I had caught this information much earlier since I wrote my first article on Murata late in 2016, but I only found out tonight through a condolence message given by the uploader for the "Denwa shite mo" video above that the singer had passed away on February 22nd 2016 from cancer at the age of 62. I read his blog in which he wrote up to about a week before his death after which his son made the announcement on the 23rd. Truly sad but at the very least, he has provided a legacy through his discography and songs that he had created for other singers.

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