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, November 21, 2018

Taeko Ohnuki -- Dare no Tame ni(誰のために)

This is just the song to listen to on a Wednesday afternoon. There was a genre that was bandied about in Japan called healing music which I think is a part of easy listening music over here in the West, and although this song is actually over 41 years old, it can easily fulfill a role as an audio salve of sorts.

Absence indeed does make the heart (and ears) grow fonder, and it was with a pleasant "surprise" that I've come across Taeko Ohnuki's(大貫妙子)"Dare no Tame ni" (For Who?). This is a track from Ohnuki's 2nd solo album "Sunshower" that I've covered through two articles, but I've not had a chance to cover this particular number (oh yeah?).

"Dare no Tame ni" is a gloriously mellow song by Ohnuki that straddles jazz and AOR, and even had me thinking of the late Vince Guaraldi in parts. The keyboardist could either have been Ryuichi Sakamoto(坂本龍一)or Yuh Imai(今井裕), but whoever it was, the song is also a showcase for him as he trips the light fantastic on the keys.

This melodic swaddling blanket also conceals some iron resolution from someone who's determined to press on with what he/she wants to do in life despite the opposition. In fact, I will let Ms. Ohnuki give her own thoughts on what she was thinking about when she came up with "Dare no Tame ni" via translation through a 1983 article in the journal "Music Steady" according to the J-Wiki article for "Sunshower":

I feel that this is surely a cry from the disadvantaged. There are cases in which the world will truly not accept you unless you have status or prestige, and there are points there that I want to complain about. It's very difficult to press forward with what you want to do, so you tend to want to flee sometimes, but you don't know whether you will become happy or satisfied if you do so, so it's an extremely unstable time. This is the sort of song which illustrates how far you will push ahead stubbornly with what you are protecting.

As I said at the top, this can be a form of healing music.

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