I was teaching my student the other night and we were both commiserating about the heat and humidity that have been pummeling us both on our respective sides of the Pacific Ocean. Today was pretty darn toasty out there and it will be getting even hotter tomorrow before we get a break on Tuesday. But hey, I got to see France win the World Cup for 2018 and this year's Honda Indy was darn interesting as well.
A few nights ago, contributor Chasing Showa was making a comment for my article on Mariko Fuji（藤真利子）, and he mentioned about this obscure band that he had found out about. Called Step, the song featured here is "Summer Time", a cooling and dreamy tune.
The only information that I could glean about this duo was from music journalist Toshi Kanazawa's（金澤寿和）blog "Light Mellow on the Web". Debuting in 1982, Step never had any hits and released 3 singles and 1 album "Rising Tomorrow". One interesting piece of trivia that I discovered about Step was that a young Toshiki Kadomatsu（角松敏生）had been with Seiken Komura（小村精権）before they even had an official name, providing a demo tape including a song titled "Still I'm In Love With You". However, with the chance of going solo, Kadomatsu decided to drop out of the soon-to-be-called Step (I guess you could say that Toshiki fell out of Step...har de har har). Komura then invited singer-songwriter Kojiro Nishimori（西森幸次郎）, and the duo was formed.
"Summer Time" may have been that first single, and the band's performance reminds me somewhat of another couple of well-established mellow duos, H2O and Bread & Butter, which may explain why Step didn't particularly take the nation by storm with their pleasant sound. Still, for all those folks who have been climbing onto the City Pop/J-AOR bandwagon over the past few years, "Rising Tomorrow" may be a nice rare find.