Saturday, January 05, 2019

The Singing Angels go to Japan

I forgot I had this.  I spotted it a couple days ago on top of one of my record crates, and I said, "I forgot I had that."  It's a seven-inch Japanese Christmas EP I bought while serving in Yokosuka, Japan, so it must be 1983-ish.  No year given--none I can read, anyway--and I can't read the logographic Chinese characters called Kanji, so let's just call this The Singing Angels in Japan.  It's the worst I can do on short notice.  An on-line translator tells me that "Singing Angels" is "Utau tenshi-tachi" in Japense.

This runs at 33 1/3, so there's about 18 minutes of music.  I can identify all but the last two titles.  If anyone recognizes one or both, please leave a comment.

The arrangements are very good, the stereo sound is nice, and did I mention that I'd forgotten I had this?  Oh, and though this is stereo, we almost got it in mono.  I did a dumb thing and downloaded the update for my VinylStudio software (made by AlpineSoft), and of course it has glitches, one of which is to check the "Mix down to mono" box for me.  I'm not doing it, so it must be the software.  Luckily, I caught it this time before I exported the tracks (another glitch has made exporting an issue, too), so we have stereo.  I prefer my stereo in stereo, anyway.

To the Utau Tenshi-Tachi: Japanese Christmas EP

Jingle Bells
Santa Claus Is Coming to Town
Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer
I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
Silent Night
Joy to the World

Victor KVC-213


Buster said...

LOVE the new blog graphic! Did RCA circa 1970 ever issue anything on clear vinyl? (Maybe a rock LP?)

Like you, I have had the unhappy experience of paying for an "upgrade" to software that turned out to be bug-happy.

rev.b said...

Looks delightful! Thanks Lee.

Lee Hartsfeld said...


Well, mine was free. Save for the hassles it's causing!

The blog graphic was designed for me by a reader, and I can't remember his name! If he's reading this, please comment so I can properly thank you.



Diane said...

I agree -- that new orange-era RCA homage is awesome.

(Possibly I'm appreciating it more because, just today, I was cleaning an RCA album, where if you turned it sideways, it disappeared. Yikes, that 2D record-pressing era sucked.)

Ernie said...

Wow, this certainly a nice surprise. Thanks Lee!

Ignacio Esteban Hernández García said...

Hola Lee, yo elaboré esa imagen, no recuerdo de donde tome la imagen del disco, saludos y también para mí fue grato volver a ver esa imagen, saludos.

Lee Hartsfeld said...


Thanks! It's a gorgeous image, and I really appreciate your work. I think this is the third of your images I've put up.

I had to translate your comment, of course! Thanks again.

barba said...

they did "jingle bells" and "santa claus is coming to town" in english... or at least the hooks they did. but no attempt at "rudolph the red-nosed reindeer". that would have been something to hear.

i'm just saying...

Lee Hartsfeld said...

I agree. It would be have been very funny in a non-PC way.

The English hooks would almost suggest this was aimed at a U.S. market, but since the packaging is all-Kanji, I'm guessing it's just part of the Japanese love for English words and phrases. The love of inserting them into things, or featuring them on products, and for no particular reason. When I was in Japan, young people wore clothes with English (well, American) phrases and words on them, and nothing to do with anything. Just for the sake of having an American word or phrase. I quickly gave up trying to understand half of what I witnessed in Japan.

Ernie said...

I tried taking just the song titles from the cover and plugging them into an OCR software, thinking it might spit out just enough of a title to get some song info. It returned nothing. Not even random words, just nothing. My guess is it may be a funny font. Maybe I should try it with the text on the labels, that might be a more standard font.