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.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

C-C-B -- Romantic ga Tomaranai (Romanticが止まらない)

Around the mid-80s onwards, there were plenty of boy bands whose members were instrument-capable. And they had their own musical niche: The Checkers gave tribute to the doo-wop 50s, The Omega Tribe crooned summer AOR and there was C-C-B which went for an interesting mix of  cute pop/rock/punk.

However, C-C-B was first known as The Coconut Boys when they formed back in 1982. At the time, the members emulated the Group Sounds vibe of the 60s but their first two singles didn't chart. But with a change in personnel and a big shift in appearance, the band decided to also change their name to C-C-B.

Their 3rd single (and basically their last chance before a very hard decision was to have been made) was "Romantic ga Tomaranai"(Romantic Doesn't Stop), a pure pop ditty with elements of technopop and aidoru-like harmonies. I guess C-C-B may have beat pop duo Puffy by about a decade when it came to adopting the cute/punk esthetic. The boys changed into more day-glo outfits and hair. You might say it was almost a Doctor Who-like regeneration of sorts.

The video above was a pretty epic and slick production. Not quite sure what it all meant but I'm sure it got a lot of publicity.

This video shows C-C-B in action with their guitars and syndrums. Arguably the most noticeable member was Koji Ryu(笠浩二)the drummer. He wasn't exactly tall and trim but with the shocking pink hair, Elton John glasses, and headset, he improbably had the girls swooning including an old university buddy here in Toronto from a quarter-century ago. Whenever a bunch of us visited her apartment, she always had this particular song playing at some point and she would purr "Koji....Koji....Koji...." I guess Koji's falsetto vocals and crinkly smile may also have been factors. For Ryu himself, though, there were some very rough days before the song was deemed a success. Having been selected to be the lead vocal, the pressure induced the poor lad to go through stomach pains and insomnia.

"Romantic ga Tomaranai" was made by veterans Takashi Matsumoto(松本隆)(lyrics) and Kyohei Tsutsumi (筒美京平)(music), and released in January 1985. It went as far as No. 2 on the Oricon weeklies and ended up becoming the 4th-ranked song of the year, winning a Gold Prize at the year-end Japan Record Awards. The song was also chosen as the theme song for a TV drama. Not surprisingly, it's the song that C-C-B is most recognized for. It is included on the band's 3rd album, "Suteki na Beat"(すてきなビート....Wonderful Beat).

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