Imawano Kiyoshiro passed away

Imawano Kiyoshiro (忌野 清志郎), a Japanese rock musician who represents the J-POP scene in the early 1980s, passed away on May 2, 2009 at the age of 58. I liked his songs so much that I used one of his songs, Transistor Radio, as a BGM in my wedding party.

The followings are random clips of his songs from YouTube.

"Ue o Muite Arukou": This song was the first one that I saw him singing as a rock musician on TV. It was perhaps in 1979. The song is a cover of Sakamoto Kyu's "Ue o muite aruko" known by an alternative title "Sukiyaki" in some western countries.

"Sweet Soul Music": Kiyoshiro's homage to Otis Redding. He also sang a song entitled "Otis ga oshiete kureta (Otis taught me)".

"Slow Ballad": This song was released in 1976, but Kiyoshiro's records sold so badly at the time that they became out of press in a few years. They were re-issued after he became famous, and this ballad is now a standard number in J-POP.

"Kimi ga Boku wo Shitteru": Originally released in 1980 as a rock version. The following video clip is an acoustic guitar session with Nakaido Reiichi (also known as Chabo) aired on TV in 1994.

"Hippie ni Sasagu": The title means "Dedicated to Hippie". He made this song for his first manager, who was also a friend of his, whose nickname was Hippie and who passed away before Kiyoshiro's songs became popular to the public. In the later part of this song, he just crys out loud for about 2 minutes for his late friend.

"Music funeral" for Kiyoshiro is being held at the Aoyama Funeral Pavilion from 13:00 to 18:00 tomorrow (May 9). R.I.P., Kiyoshiro.