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, June 7, 2023

Eri Sugai -- Saigo no Vacation(最後のVacation)


I was going down Memory Lane via the "Light Mellow: Moment" album. It had been a while since I listened to any of the "Light Mellow" series and it was nice hearing the tracks again. I've written about some of the entries for "Moment" such as Naoki Watanabe's(渡辺直樹)"Veranda no Carib"(ベランダのカリブ)which became the final track.

However, when I found "Veranda no Carib" on YouTube a few years ago, there were many other tracks from "Moment" that weren't up on the video platform. I tried again after listening to the CD and I was delighted to see that there have been some additions. That includes the late Eri Sugai's(菅井えり)"Saigo no Vacation" (Last Vacation) originally from her 2nd album "Ring My Bell" (July 1987). It is certainly a pleasant pop tune but my mind kinda bounced around the topic on whether it would also apply as a City Pop song. The "Light Mellow" series would definitely include anything pop that was still light and mellow, and in the end, I felt that "Saigo no Vacation" can belong in Resort Pop which is a subset of City Pop.

Regardless, "Saigo no Vacation" is a grooving and summery tune that has hints of Kazuhito Murata(村田和人)although words and music were actually provided by Fumiko Hiratsuka and Takashi Shoji(平塚文子 & 小路隆)under Hiroshi Shinkawa's(新川博)arrangement. It's got those keyboards that I love from that time by Tom Keane and the guitar solo comes from Michael Landau. In fact, according to Discogs, the entirety of "Ring My Bell" was recorded at Sunset Sound, Sunset Sound Factory in Los Angeles with a non-Japanese staff of musicians including the always welcome Jerry Hey on the trumpet.

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