Love Mariko Takahashi（高橋真梨子）. She was one of the first (if not the first) non-aidoru/non-enka solo singers that I encountered when I initially fell for kayo kyoku in the early 1980s. Mariko has got one of the best voices that I have ever heard in a pop singer in Japan. In addition, she's been on NHK's Kohaku Utagassen four times now singing hits such as "Momo Iro Toiki"（桃色吐息）and "for you...".
Not too long ago, I saw the above video which has Takahashi singing "Koibito-tachi no Jikan" (Time for Lovers), a gently undulating bossa nova ballad, ideal for relaxation at home, especially following a major stint of Xmas shopping.
From the image of the YouTube video, I noticed the cover for the album "SONGS ~ Takahashi Mari no Sekai"（SONGS ～高橋まりの世界...The World of Mari Takahashi）and eventually found out that this was a BEST release from December 1984. "Koibito-tachi no Jikan" is indeed in there, but the song itself didn't sound like anything from the 1980s; in fact, my feeling was that it was much earlier in the 1970s, and seeing that the title referred to Mari Takahashi and not Mariko Takahashi was a big clue.
The moniker Mari Takahashi was one that the singer-songwriter had used back in her days as the second vocalist of the pop group Pedro & Capricious（ペドロ&カプリシャス）in that earlier decade. Seeing some of the other tracks on "SONGS", this was a BEST release of her tunes during her time with P & G. Sure enough, after scrolling down the collection of singles by the band, I was able to find out that "Koibito-tachi no Jikan" was actually the B-side of a Pedro & Capricious single from January 1978, "Carib no Yume"（カリブの夢...Caribbean Dreams）. Some more dogged investigation revealed via the JASRAC database that the lovely Latin melody was provided by Takahashi's husband Henry Hirose（ヘンリー広瀬）with lyrics by Naoko Masunaga（増永直子）.
Listening to this, I can bet a lot of folks would love to head out south for warmer climes at this time.