“Sukiyaki” (Kyu Sakamoto)

Originally entitled “I Look Up When I Walk,” singer answers loneliness by preventing the spilling of tears. Walking (in winter) “beyond” the clouds and sky and avoiding the “shadow” of night, the problem of feeling “alone” is that it must have its origins in the familial/familiar; by having the eyes serve as bowls, truly, the prismatic effect of looking through tears possibly allows access to “happiness,” but this can only come about through willful delusion. As the biggest hit by a Japanese act in America (number one in between Leslie Gore’s “It’s My Party” and The Essex’s “Easier Said than Done”), this is the sweet stew(ing) produced by the tether of (ascetic) love.

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