“Wotablast From The Past” is a new feature where we highlight idol songs pre-2000. The idea was brought about by our community member, Vu and as current idols fans, we felt the need to reflect on the past and showcase the best of what idol music used to be. I take a look at the song, “Mugon Iroppoi” by Kudo Shizuka!
工藤静香–MUGO・ん・・・色っぽい (A Longer Performance Video)
Kudo Shizuka is currently best known as the wife of Johnny’s group, SMAP member, Kimura Takuya. What some of us don’t know is that she was an Onyanko Club member in the 80’s before going solo(Onyanko Club was an idol group that Akimoto Yasushi helped produce). Kudo joined Onyanko club in 1986 and made her solo debut in 1987. After her solo debut, it was apparent that she was a star that was too big for an idol group. She quickly became one of the most successful idols in Japan.
“Mugon Iroppoi” is Kudo Shizuka’s 5th solo single released on August 24th, 1988 and the lyrics were written by the famed singer/song-writer, Nakajima Miyuki. Kudo Shizuka’s sound is not your typical bubbly idol music that you’d attribute to an 80’s idol all time great like Matsuda Seiko. Kudo’s sound has bit of a mature feel and has a bit of an edge supported by the 80’s pop-rock instrumentals. Kudo’s image is very mature even though she was only 18 at the time this single was released. She certainly looks older than 18 to me. I honestly tend to prefer 80’s idols with a bit of an edge. That’ll become more apparent as we do more of this feature.
The lyrics are about someone who’s a bit shy when it comes to expressing their feelings towards a lover so the way they communicate their feelings is through eye contact and the lyrics mention that her soul is talkative. The instrumentals do a good enough job in supporting this song. Very straightforward in it’s toned down Van Halen type of approach. In the first video, she sounds a bit off and wasn’t performing at her true abilities. The second video is more true to her actual abilities. The chorus is super catchy. Very simple monosyllabic repetition of, “me, to, me” is not flashy but the tempo of the song is fast enough to keep it interesting and looping in your head.
Hopefully this feature will bring about more people who appreciate the history of idol music and not just the current acts. Keep an eye out for more songs and artists from the past to be covered in this feature!