A taste of “Sukiyaki”

Nope, this post is not about food — again.
Back in high school, I started liking the song “Sukiyaki”. It’s the perfect “senti” song, the kind you sing when the man (or woman) of your dreams has significantly resisted your numerous advances, or worse–has labeled you as one of his “dearest friends”. All through out adolescence, this line was the worst I’ve heard and wouldn’t want to inflict on any lovelorn teenager in the midst of her raging hormones: “I’ve always seen you as a dear sister….”

Yep, dear reader–someone freaking told me that when I was 18 years old. The person who told me that fancied himself as a local Dawson Leery and had the misguided posturings of a local Casanova. Fast forward twelve years after, I am happily married and he has a steady round of various f@ck buddies.

Yeah, no one forgets her first heart break!

Anyway, back to Sukiyaki. I recently discovered Fukuoka Dreaming, a very interesting blog maintained by a Filipino lawyer called Kaeru and his wife Asawa. The blog talks about Fukuoka living and the numerous stuff that is Japanese related. Naturally, I am in my element.

One of the interesting posts I came across is the post on Sukiyaki (the food) and Sukiyaki (the song).

For the food, I am planning on trying it as soon as I have time. As for the song, I never knew that it’s original version is Japanese. Back in HS, I thought the song writer was just being clever by naming the song “Sukiyaki”, but yeah–like all great things, this really senti song traces its roots to Japan. The original song was titled “Ue o Muite Arukou” (Look Up When I Walk). The song, according to Wikipedia, was sung by singer Kyu Sakamoto and has reached the top of the US Billboard 100 in 1963. To this day, this remains the only Japanese language song to do so. Basically, the lyrics is about a man who looks up and whistles while he is walking so that his tears won’t fall.

Here’s the MV of “Ue o Muite Arukou” (Look Up When I Walk)

I looked up the lyrics via Learn-Japanese.

Note that this was the 1963 version–note the classic styling and the feel good melodies even if the lyrics are kinda sad. We’re probably more familiar with the 1995 version by male group 4 P.M.

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