Far from Any Road & BoFN Post

I like the opening theme to True Detective Season 1, “Far from Any Road,” and put up a post at the Blog of Funny Names on Brett and Rennie Sparks, who wrote and perform it. From the album Singing Bones (2003).

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Furuhata Ninzaburo & Opening Theme

Furuhata Ninzaburo was a great detective show, comparable to Columbo in the basic premise, but it had a more philosophical and dandyish protagonist, brilliantly played by Mazakazu Tamura. It also had a great opening theme, with a James Bondish riff (probably overtly) at the beginning, but a totally different flair once it got going.

Shiina Ringo & Seishun no Matataki

Shiina Ringo “Seishun no Matataki” (Flicker of Youth), written for Chiaki Kuriyama who released it 2011, here performed by Shiina Ringo herself 2014.

Version from the live performance televised this New Year’s Eve (December 31, 2016):

Lyrics here courtesy of Lyrical Nonsense. Shiina Ringo is a very gifted songwriter but I find her voice a bit grating. I love the arrangement though, with the interwoven electronica.

Mannix Theme Song &

One of the notable and probably forgotten and underappreciated crime show theme songs. I was remembering it, then went to search the T’Oobs, which rarely disappoint. By Lalo Shifrin (of Mission Impossible and Dirty Harry fame, to name just a few). I always considered this close to the Ironside and Hawaii 5-0 level of big band theme songs. And don’t forget Kojak!

 

Nao Matsuzaki & Kawaberi no Ie

Nao Matsuzaki’s “Kawaberi no Ie” (house next to a river) is a single from 2006 but seems to have been re-released on some of her albums. It made an impression on me as the theme music for a weekly documentary program on NHK, so I hunted it down for the listening pleasure of my 2 1/2 readers.

This seems like the sound sincerity would make if it could make a sound. You can see Nao’s official site here. Meanwhile, the scenes the Youtuber films are from Shibuya in Tokyo. Buy here.

UPDATE:This post has been by far my most visited over the past several months. Thanks for coming by and appreciating the song.

From viewer comments I gather that most are visiting this post to get to the comments, where I posted the video of an extended session with Nao and her band. That video has (apparently) the only complete version of “Kawaberi no Ie” that can be played on the T’Oobs in Europe or North America. To make things easier, I am moving that video up here. The song starts from 21:40:

An additional note: NHK’s weekly Document 72 Hours (which always features Nao’s song at the end) is available in English on the T’Oobs. It doesn’t have a lot of thrills and chills, but it is a really fascinating slice of life show. The producers pick a spot and film the people that go there for 72 hours. Then they make that into a 25 minute documentary.

UPDATE II
Commenter Pow.r asked about English lyrics. I couldn’t find any, so I did this crude, unpoetical, probably-inaccurate-in-various-places translation below. Promise me you won’t use this to sing the song in English. We need a songwriter to do that version. Also, let me know when any of you find any mistakes.

川べりの家
Kawaberi no Ie
House by the River

Nao Matsuzaki

大人になってゆくほど
Otona ni natte yuku hodo
The more grown up I get

涙がよく出てしまうのは
namida ga yoku dete shimau no wa
The more the tears flow

1人で生きて行けるからだと
hitori de ikite yukeru kara dato
I can live on my own so

信じて止まない
shinjita yamanai
I won’t stop believing

それでも淋しいのも知ってるから
sore demo samishī no mo shitteru kara
But I know I’m lonely, too, so

あたたかい場所へ行こうよ
atatakai basho e yukou yo
Let’s go to a warm place

川のせせらぎが聞こえる
kawa no seseragi ga kikoeru
I hear a river flowing

家を借りて耳をすまし
ie o karite mimi o sumashi
I rent a house and listen to my ears

その静けさや激しさを覚えてゆく
sono shizukesa ya hageshi-sa o oboete yuku
I’ll remember that silence, that intensity

歌は水に溶けてゆき
uta wa mizu ni tokete yuki
The song melts in the water

そこだけ水色
soko dake mizuiro
Watery blue, only there

幸せを守るのではなく分けてあげる
shiawase o mamoru node wa naku wakete ageru
I won’t hold on to happiness but split it up

なるべく大きくて
narubeku ōkikute
Spread it out as far as possible

なるべくりっぱな水槽を
narubeku rippana suisō o
A fish tank as nice as I can find

自転車で買いに行き
jitensha de kai ni iki
Let’s go by bicycle and buy it

はなしてやろう
Hanashite yarou
Let’s talk

なんて奇跡の色を持っているの
nante kiseki no iro o motte iru no
What a miracle, the color you have

キラキラ揺らめいてる
kirakira yurameiteru
Glittering, shimmering

水溜まりに映っている
mizutamari ni utsutte iru
It’s reflected in a puddle

ボクの家は青く透け
boku no ie wa aoku suke
My house is translucent blue

指でいくらかき混ぜても
yubi de ikura kakimazete mo
Even when you stir it with your fingers

もどってくる
modotte kuru
Come back

とても儚ないものだから
totemo hakananai monodakara
It’s so transitory so

大切にして
taisetsu ni shite
Cherish it

一瞬しかない
isshun shika nai
You only have a moment

一瞬しかない
isshun shika nai
You only have a moment