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.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Kiyoshi Maekawa -- Hana no Toki・Ai no Toki (花の時・愛の時)

January 2017
As of this week, if I'm not mistaken Kiyoshi Maekawa has reached a whopping 50 years in showbiz - woohoo, congratulations Mae-Kiyo! Ah, that's 50 years of standing like an angry/ANGERY (haha) or unamused pillar while on stage, and then letting loose and goofing off on variety shows... I hope I get to see my favourite kayo singer and his antics for many more years to come.

In other somewhat related news, I finally got my hands on to some of his merchandise that I've been hoping to get for a long time now: his calendars. I got both the 2017 and 2018 ones late last year when his goods shop got itself in order at long last. As with the Hiroshi Itsuki (五木ひろし) calendar, I LOVE them. Now with what I call my monthly posters, plus some additional candid shots at the back of each edition, I'll be doing what I did with Itsuki's articles a while back wherein I showcased the months' photos, starting with this one.

Someone give the man a handkerchief.

Alright, coming to the topic at hand, I wondering as to what song from Mae-Kiyo's repertoire that I hadn't yet written about would be good for his tribute, and after some consideration, I thought it'd be apt to feature "Hana no Toki・Ai no Toki", his first single released after he left his Mood Kayo group,  The Cool Five, in 1987. This song was brought to you by renowned songwriters Rei Nakanishi (なかにし礼), who was responsible for the words, and Takashi Miki (三木たかし), the music.

January 2018
"Hana no Toki" starts off soft with mostly the tinkling notes of the piano, smooth strings, and Maekawa gingerly uttering the lyrics. It sounded beautiful and it gave me the image of him singing this while sitting in a field of pretty flowers in full bloom. Upon first listen, though, to me, it didn't come across as something particularly in his style. But then the chorus kicked in and proved me wrong when the intensity slowly began to escalate to the point where the man was doing his usual shtick of bellowing into the microphone. With the image I just mentioned in mind, it's as if a windstorm kicked up in the flower field and he's trying to compete with it in order to be heard... Or, well, just like in the video above, he's competing with the backing choir. To be honest, I like that bit the most. I love it when Mae-Kiyo cranks his vocals up to a hundred. It just sounds so satisfying, especially at high volumes.

February 2017
Wrapping up the article, here are the other Mae-Kiyo calendar pics for now. Personally, I preferred the 2017 shots. On a separate note, February 2017 looks like it's probably from his "Miyako Kaze" (都風) MV. 

February 2018
2018's cover

Well, now, I think I have close to 50 pictures of Mae-Kiyo in total... Guess that makes it more than my collection of Hachi's... I think. 😌


  1. Hello, Noelle.

    This was such a heartwarming ballad that I was surprised that IT hadn't been used as an NHK Olympics promotion song. Still, this sounded like a requiem to his old days as part of the Cool Five and a nice way to begin his new solo career.

  2. Hi, Noelle.

    Congratulations to Maekawa for his golden jubilee in showbiz!

    Best thing is (besides his singing of course), the man can still rock a white suit! It’s pretty amazing (and so unfair!) Right, after all the exclamations, it’s nice to settle down a bit and listen to his deep, calming voice in the video above :)

    On a separate note, it’s almost CNY in Singapore. Celebrating CNY with family and friends is definitely one of the things that I miss most. Here’s wishing you a very Happy Chinese New Year and an abundant harvest of ang pows!

    1. Hi, Francium, and Happy Chinese New Year! Yep, I do like the ang pows flooding in! :)

  3. Happy Chinese New Year to the both of you. Maybe if I'm lucky, I will get some of that dim sum as well this weekend.

    1. Happy Chinese New Year, J-Canuck! Hope you get your dim sum.


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