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.

Monday, October 21, 2019

Sayuri Yoshinaga -- Seto no Uzushio(瀬戸のうず潮)

While I'm keeping my ears attuned to the election results tonight, I'm going with something completely different and writing an article about an old chestnut.

Can't quite remember how I found about this particular song by singer/actress Sayuri Yoshinaga(吉永小百合). Maybe it was through a recent episode of NHK's "Uta Kon"(うたコン)or perhaps I decided that I haven't seen the darling of Japanese cinema from the early postwar period in some time so I did some searching about. In any case, I found this slightly bittersweet-sounding kayo tune in Yoshinaga's discography.

"Seto no Uzushio" (The Whirling Tides of Seto) is the theme song from her 1964 Nikkatsu movie "Uzushio"(うず潮)which was based on an NHK morning serial drama that had been broadcast that same year, according to J-Wiki. The story is about Yoshinaga's character, Fumiko, and her life as a student at Onomichi Girls' High School in Hiroshima Prefecture. Along with the grand orchestra including the horns accompanying the sweet voice of Yoshinaga, there is even an organ representing those whirling tides.

The song was created by lyricist Takao Saeki(佐伯孝夫)and composer Tadashi Yoshida(吉田正), the same duo behind one of the most evergreen kayo to my ears, "Itsudemo Yume wo"(いつでも夢を)which had been recorded as a duet in 1962 by Yoshinaga and enka singer Yukio Hashi(橋幸夫). From what I could glean from Saeki's lyrics, it seems like Fumiko may be leaving her beloved hometown and heading to colder climes.

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