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.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Sowelu -- No Limit

Eight years of "Kayo Kyoku Plus", and the only Sowelu article that I've had thus far is her cover of "Dare Yori Suki Nanoni"(誰より好きなのに)originally by soulful Toko Furuuchi(古内東子).

There was that period of around half a decade between the end of the 1990s and the mid-2000s when R&B was making some good rounds in Japanese pop music. Sowelu was one of the names that had been bandied about along with other singers such as bird, Misia and m-flo. I knew about Sowelu but she didn't seem to quite get that traction on fame as some of her contemporaries did, although with 19 singles and 6 original albums between 2002 and 2012, she wasn't lacking for fans.

Believe me, I've had no limits in liking "No Limit", her 6th single from April 2004. It's that example of J-R&B that I enjoyed when the genre was itself enjoying the good times two decades ago. In her J-Wiki profile, Sowelu has been a great admirer of singers such as Mariah Carey and Janet Jackson, and I definitely get the vibe of the latter singer as Sowelu sings "No Limit". At the same time, I also feel some m-flo in there, too. Lyricist Saeko Nishio(西尾佐栄子)and composer Hitoshi Harukawa(春川仁志)were behind the song.

My anime buddy is more of a fan of cars than I am, but I have to confess that I'm quite interested in that blue car that Sowelu was driving in the video. As for Sowelu herself, she took some time off after 2012, but she was back in the saddle again from 2015.


  1. Hello J-Canuck,

    Wait a minute… I remember her.

    I found her on a compilation album of pretty famous JR&B singers of that time. A producer named JHETT a.k.a YAKKO for Aquarius released an album with Sowelu, LISA (the m-flo connection), Namie Amuro and Koda Kumi. Sowelu did a japanese version of an old Shalamar tune called “A Night to Remember.”

    Here’s Sowelu’s version of that song:

    I still have that album somewhere...

    By the way, the car is a MG Midget. When I was a kid people were crazy about those cars.


    1. Many thanks on identifying the car, Chasing Showa. I'm sure that my anime buddy will have some opinions on that one. I will definitely check out Sowelu's cover of "A Night to Remember" since I love the Shalamar original.

    2. Dang...that's a nice version although I would have preferred a synthesizer with a bigger oomph.


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