Monday, February 15, 2010

Toi Et Moi - Niji To Yuki No Ballad (1971)

Toi Et Moi - Niji To Yuki No Ballad (1971)
トワ・エ・モア - 虹と雪のバラード

In light of the current festivities in Vancouver, we at Showa OK! have been swept away by the international wave of Olympic fever. And as the focus of our efforts here pertain to all things Shōwa, we were immediately nostalgic for sights and sounds from the Games of the 11th Winter Olympiad in Sapporo, Hokkaidō.

Japan was originally awarded rights to host the 1940 Winter Olympics in Sapporo, in addition to the Summer Games which were to be held in Tokyo earlier that year. However, the Games were ultimately cancelled when Japan resigned as host after the country's invasion of China in 1937. Following the war, cities which forfeited hosting the Games were again awarded the opportunity to do so, resulting in the 1964 Tokyo Games and, of course, the 1972 Winter Games. In both instances, Japan was the first Asian country to host either Olympic ceremonies.

Pop-folk duo Toi Et Moi's "Niji To Yuki No Ballad" ("Ballad of Rainbows and Snow"), released in 1971, was chosen as the official theme song of the Sapporo Olympics. While the song's title may sound corny (and, indeed, the song itself may sound corny as well), we feel it representative not only of popular music in Japan at the time, but also of the simple hope that countries once entrenched in aggression could join together to participate in friendly competition for the sake of international welfare.

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