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.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Kingo Hamada -- Dream is Alive

I've been to the hotel district of West Shinjuku enough times over my years in Japan to know about the dessert buffet that the Hilton had way back when, the nice washrooms that are in the Hyatt Regency, and of course, the myriad restaurants in the Keio Plaza since that was the place we all stayed at during the JET Programme Orientation.

When I hear this song by singer-songwriter Kingo Hamada(濱田金吾), I get those feelings of lounging around in one of those hotels while taking in a cocktail...or as in the case of the Hilton...downing another slice of cake. But man, listening to that spacey intro to "Dream is Alive" after the percussion starts things off...well, I think the song is ahead of its 1988 launch time. It sounds like a song that should have been placed onto the "Space Dandy" soundtrack or a new cool tune by Nona Reeves, Kirinji or even Jamiroquai.

"Dream is Alive" is a track from "Original Album 1" for the anime "Earthian"(アーシアン). I had never heard nor seen this 80s show although according to the Wikipedia article, it's based on some sort of yaoi manga. Hamada composed and arranged the song while Kazuko Kobayashi(小林和子)created the love lyrics. In fact, Hamada took care of the entire music for the series apparently.

The spacey introduction soon gives way to a romantic City Pop number enhanced by the sultry delivery by Hamada and the backup chorus. Then, there is also that jazzy sax that helps out during its solo and at the end. But all throughout "Dream is Alive", a feeling of high living, street lights and class imbues the proceedings, with perhaps one of those Shinjuku hotels being a stopping-off point for some libations and entertainment. Would be nice to hear this one on the car stereo while driving through the neighbourhood at night.

Keio Plaza Hotel in the back.

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