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 30, 2019

Sentimental City Romance -- Sutekissukippu(ステキッスキップ)

When I heard the intro for this song the first time, I wondered whether I was about to hear music history's first country ambient tune.

This is actually "Sutekissukippu", a track on the December 1977 3rd album "City Magic"(シティ・マジック)by the band Sentimental City Romance(センチメンタル・シティ・ロマンス), an act that I've come to realize has been somewhat underrated over the years. Digging into some of their discography, vocalist Tokuo Nakano(中野督夫)and his bandmates have come up with very pleasant and mellow fare.

Under normal circumstances, I would have romanized the title here as "Suteki Skip" (Lovely Skip) but there is the issue of that middle part: キッス. Nakano, who wrote and composed this romantic ditty, must have had a method to his madness when titling "Sutekissukippu", and perhaps he wanted to run three words together cleverly: suteki, kiss, skip. Therefore, maybe, he wanted his title to mean "Lovely, Kiss, Skip".

Whatever the reason, "Sutekissukippu" sounds like a sunset invitation for a slow dance by the beach. Nakano may have been the one behind the creation of the song but when that keyboard plays in the solo, I can't help but feel that there is something very Tin Pan Alley(ティン・パン・アレー)and/or Haruomi Hosono(細野晴臣)in the arrangement. A nice tune for the romantic couples.

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