22 Years of Epitaphs: Ichiro Mizuki, “The King of Anime Songs,” The True Face of the “Beautiful Singer” Who Supported Him During a Period of Ill-Fated, Temporary Retirement | FRIDAY DIGITAL

22 Years of Epitaphs: Ichiro Mizuki, “The King of Anime Songs,” The True Face of the “Beautiful Singer” Who Supported Him During a Period of Ill-Fated, Temporary Retirement

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Mr. Mizuki sang 1,000 songs for 24 hours in August 1999 (Image: Jiji Press)

There is no end to the mourning for Ichiro Mizuki, the “King of Anime Songs” (74 years old), who passed away on December 6, 2010 due to lung cancer. On December 23, a memorial program for Mr. Mizuki was broadcast on Bunka Hoso radio.

There are many fans of Mr. Mizuki in the entertainment world. Hiroko Moriguchi, Shoko Nakagawa, and “Momoiro Clover Z” ……. Mr. Mizuki was trusted not only because of his great songs, but also because he was friendly with everyone, famous or not,” said an employee of a major record company.

The mourning is not limited to the domestic market. The response has come from overseas as well, with some saying, “We will miss his voice,” and “An era of anime songs has come to an end.

Mizuki’s Wikipedia page has been translated into 90 languages. It shows how popular he is even in foreign countries.

Mizuki has remained active throughout his life, and even after his lung cancer was diagnosed in April 2009, he continued to perform on stage. She moved her mouth and smiled.

Working in cabarets and nightclubs

She has also devoted herself to the reconstruction of eastern Japan, which was devastated by the earthquake and tsunami. On stage with local children (Image: Kyodo News)

However, Mizuki’s life as a singer was not smooth sailing. Immediately after his debut, he experienced a long period of disappointment.

It was in 1968 that Mr. Mizuki made his debut as a singer with “Kimi ni Sasageru Boku no Uta” (My Song for You). However, for a while, he was not making any headway. Lacking hit songs, he temporarily retired from the music industry. He worked in cabarets and nightclubs to earn money.

There were other reasons for his retirement. He got married to Mariko Kujo, a senior member of the same record company (Nippon Columbia). Ms. Kujo, who had hit songs such as “Twilight Town” and “Susuki no Blues” at the time, was a popular singer for Nippon Columbia. Ms. Mizuki, on the other hand, was an unknown newcomer who was performing in front of Mr. Kujo. It is said that Mr. Mizuki withdrew from the music industry out of respect for Mr. Kujo.

Mr. Mizuki and Ms. Kujo were married in 1971. It is said that Mr. Kujo was the one who approached her. It was also Mr. Kujo who encouraged Mr. Mizuki to return to the music industry after his retirement.

A Nippon Columbia producer approached Mr. Mizuki with an offer to sing the theme song for the anime “Genshi Shonen Ryu. Mr. Mizuki, who made his debut as a singer, must have had mixed feelings. I heard that it was Mr. Kujo who pushed Mr. Mizuki to “give it a try. It is a well-known fact that since then, Mr. Mizuki has sung more than 1,200 themes for animation and special effects works as a leading singer.

When he appeared in the media, Mr. Mizuki would talk and laugh, saying, ‘I’m a fearless wife. He once got into an argument with Mr. Kujo and received a series of kicks. In 1984, they even released a duet song, “Koibito Kidori” (“Lovers’ Pretend”).

Mizuki used to sing the theme songs of his films, pretending to be his character. He also said that the anime songs, which became his life’s work thanks to his encounter with his beloved wife, were “a treasure chest filled with courage, hope, and dreams.

He is also known as a great natto lover and served as a “natto ambassador” (Image: Jiji Press)
  • Photo Jiji Press Kyodo News

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