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, February 7, 2018

Blue Peppers -- Roku-gatsu no Yume feat. Shiori Sasaki(6月の夢)

I think for a lot of folks here, it's already past the point where they've had enough of the winter. It's bad enough that two out of the three groundhogs on the 2nd said that there would be 6 more weeks of this season, but Toronto has gotten another few centimetres of snow during the morning rush which caused a lot of traffic accidents on the roads. And in Japan's Fukui Prefecture, there are reportedly 1000 vehicles just plain stuck on one long stretch of road due to the heavy snow. Spring is probably desperately desired at this point.

Well, I can't really help out in the weather department. However, perhaps for those who come to the blog like barflies to the neighbourhood pub, I can perhaps serve up a bit of lovely sunshine tonight. I found out about these guys named Blue Peppers(ブルー・ペパーズ)last night on YouTube. The two members, Naoki Fukuda(福田直木)and Kaoru Inoue(井上薫)from Keio University in Tokyo have created this music which spans AOR, Latin, jazz and fusion...genres that I do love. Plus when I read on their website that Fukuda digs folks like Steely Dan, Jay Graydon, Gino Vannelli (yeah, Canada!), Tomita Lab(冨田ラボ)and Tatsuro Yamashita(山下達郎)while Inoue likes Kirinji(キリンジ), Maaya Sakamoto(坂本真綾), and Toko Furuuchi(古内東子), among others, Blue Peppers instantly had my attention and affinity.

The song that I discovered came from their first release in October 2015, "Blue Peppers EP". It turned out to be their first track "Roku-gatsu no Yume" (Dreams of June) with vocalist Shiori Sasaki(佐々木詩織)piping in here as well as providing the lyrics to Blue Peppers' melody. As I said, the song is breezy and summery, and it would be just the number to back up a picnic in a park or some brunch with friends. It's just the tonic for these wintry climes.

"Roku-gatsu no Yume" has also made it onto their first full album"Retroactive" which was released in November 2017.


  1. First off, thanks a billion for this awesome blog. As a fellow Japanese music enthusiast and, like many others, particularly City Pop, of late, it's a treasure trove of awesomeness.
    Then, I wanted to point out that I found ㋅の夢 on Soundcloud quite a while ago, and was wondering whether you were following the scene there. I feel there's a lot to find on SC from Japan. On such find for me was Lamp, which I'm assuming you'll get a kick out of if you don't already know them.

    1. Hello, Matt.

      Thanks for your comments and my pleasure about the blog. I've known about Soundcloud and have sometimes used the links to it if I couldn't get a YouTube video for the song. I will definitely check out Lamp. BTW, how long have you been into Japanese music?

    2. I'd say since the late 90's? I was a teenager then and was gradually interested in the Japanese culture, first through the language (I have a knack for languages) and music sounded like a good way to familiarize myself with it. I quickly fell in love with the exoticism of it but also how much it could be literate and elaborate, even for relatively unaudacious popular music.
      My first obsessions were more Shibuya-kei (specifically Pizzicato Five, the CDs of which I could find in some shops in my native France) then moved on to the electronic music that scene produced (Cornelius, FPM).
      I grew up a jazz drummer so I ended up looking into that scene in Japan, and one thing lead to another, I discovered their funk and, later, city pop scenes, and I keep my ears on the whole spectrum nowadays. :)
      I've had the opportunity to work for 6 months in Kyoto, about 11 years ago (damn...) and despite visiting regularly (once every 2-3 years, but I live in Montreal, so Japan is veeery far) music has always been a good way to scratch that itch that experience left me with ever since. :)

      Nice to meet you!

    3. Good to meet you, too, Matt.

      Although my heritage is Japanese, the language didn't come to me all that easily so I'm envious of anyone who has that knack. One of my classmates did have that ability, though. He did one year at high school in Tokyo via a Rotary programme and ended up speaking Japanese better than the Japanese.

      I enjoy my fair share of Shibuya-kei as well whether it be through P5, Flipper's Guitar or Kahimi Karie. One of my former students has his own drum company and he still occasionally plays drums for a Japanese tribute band to progressive rock group Porcupine Tree.

      In terms of traveling to Japan, tell me about it. The flight out to Tokyo is a good 12-13 hours from Toronto so although I love seeing my old stomping grounds and friends plus the food again, I don't love spending time in Economy to and back from Japan. May be one of two main reasons that I only go to the country once every 3 years (the other being money). :)

  2. I wrote I "have a knack" for languages but I meant an interest. I misunderstood what knack actually means. So for much for having one, eh! ^^


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