What to look forward to for this year’s 61st Kouhaku Uta-Gassen

Ah, I remember years past when we could expect to see several artists from or with ties to Okinawa on NHK’s annual music show, “Kouhaku Uta-Gassen” (Red & White Song Battle). For last year’s (60th) show, a lone artist Yusuke Kamiji (performs under his first name, Yusuke) with ties to Okinawa performed and we were fortunate to have actress Yukie Nakama host the show for her third time (2006, 2008 and 2009). Flashback to the 50th show (1999) and the artists who performed included: MAX, Kiroro, SPEED, Namie Amuro, and DA PUMP. And one of my favorites was the 56th (2005) with its Okinawa-theme. Enka singer Yoko Nagayama sang “Bashoufu,” folk singer Ryoko Moriyama sang “Satoukibi Batake,” comedian Gorie (performing with the Red Team) sang “Pecori♥Night,” Rimi Natsukawa returned to sing “Nada Sou Sou” again (she performed the song the previous year), and R&B duo D-51 sang “NO MORE CRY.”

So for this year’s 61st show, who can we look forward to watching? Performing 4th (White Team) is NYC who has a member with ties to Okinawa in Yuri Chinen. Performing 10th (White Team) is the previously mentioned Yusuke. And the band I’m most looking forward to watching this year is HY who are making their first appearance on the show with the powerful song “Toki o Koe.” They’ll be performing 17th (White Team) and I heard they’ll also have eisa drummers backing them up (their website has a link to a live performance of the song). Should be a very good show.

This may end up being our last post for 2010 so we’ll take this opportunity to wish all of you a very Happy New Year!!! Take care everyone and see you in 2011!

2 thoughts on “What to look forward to for this year’s 61st Kouhaku Uta-Gassen”

  1. HY really gave a great performance! I teared up a little bit when they broke into the short “iiyasasa” part of the song! Do you know if the 56th/2005 show is available online? I missed it that year!

  2. @Joey: I agree, it was a very emotional performance. If I can find the 2005 show I’ll be sure to send you the link. 🙂

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