It’s weird, but today I thought about Maaya Sakamoto.
Her debut in Escaflowne was back in 1996, a journey of 12 years. I took notice of her pretty soon after that and was following her pretty much since then. Whoops?
But what was especially memorable to me was the song she released along with Platinum on the single, named simply “24.” If you recall Platinum was a bit of a hit and it rode the CCS wave during its hottest hour. That was 1999. I thought 24 was a cute song in a clumsy “lol engrish” way and the general idea behind the song was encouraging. I guess that was a time in my life where I had a lot of personal struggles, so it stuck.
Sort of like how every time I listen to Break of Dawn I think of Everquest, because I’d be listening to it hours on end on EQ binges. (…often when the dawn breaks…) Sigh.
Perhaps it is just that I listen to her music quite often, it’s gotten to a point where I’ve started to associate her songs to random memories I’ve had. It isn’t like I particularly like her songs, even if they are pretty soothing. It just sticks?
Still, what’s amusing is the continuing development of Sakamoto as a musician over the past decade or so since her first solo album. It’s hard to say for me, as I did not really keep a detailed tab on her career. And there was always the Yoko Kanno factor to consider. But others have, and that’s all we need.
But man, recalling seeing some early day videos of Sakamoto when she was barely out of high school, compared to her more recent sighting in musicals and in American con appearances… she’s doing well.
So why “24″? I thought it was a clever dual-use of the number both as a time notation and as an age limit. You can think of it in terms of the societal norms of women in Japan, but I think of it more generally–as a generation of young adults looking for direction in a rapidly changing world. Maybe you can interpret it differently. But that’s what is so great about it.