Sayonara Amerika, Sayonara Nippon

Asakawa Maki (1942-2010)

Posted in J-Pop,Music by bourdaghs on the January 18th, 2010

The Yomiuri newspaper is reporting (Japanese-language only) that legendary singer Asakawa Maki was found dead Sunday in a Nagoya hotel. She was 67 years old. A legendary, charismatic figure, she was the late 1960s “Queen of Underground Music.” Asakawa began appearing in Terayama Shuji’s experimental theatrical productions in 1968 and quickly became an icon of New Left culture. She released her debut album in 1970, featuring a melancholic singing style that combined jazz, blues, and chanson. Her persona coupled a cool, mysterious sexiness with searing intelligence. Asakawa always dressed in black and was usually surrounded by a haze of cigarette smoke (or at least, that was the image). She continued to perform and record regularly over the decades and was in Nagoya this weekend for live appearances at a jazz club there.


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