Back in 2013, nikala was nice enough to write about one of her favourite tunes, "Sky Restaurant" by vocal group Hi-Fi Set（ハイ・ファイ・セット）which has ended up becoming a standard number in the kayo genre. No surprise there since it was written by Yumi Arai（荒井由実）and composed by Kunihiko Murai（村井邦彦）. Especially back in the 1970s and 1980s, it just seemed that anything whipped up by Yuming（ユーミン）was gold. Listening to the original version, there seemed to be that languid and luxurious feeling of what folks could aspire to in the days of the Economic Miracle. Furthermore, as nikala also mentioned, there was that famous "Pa pa-pa pa-pa-pa" by Junko Yamamoto（山本潤子）, the main vocalist for Hi-Fi Set, which could set off any nostalgia nerves.
As I said, "Sky Restaurant" has become a standard so I just wanted to reveal a couple of the covers done by other singers since it was first released back in 1975. Yumi Seino（清野由美）caught my attention almost a year ago as this obscure City Pop singer so I covered her "Katamuku"（傾く）from her 1983 album "Continental". She also did a splendid cover of the Hi-Fi Set classic for an earlier album, her 2nd titled "Natural Woman" from 1981 according to the Hip Tank Records website. Apparently, the album has been considered to be one of the representative City Pop releases.
Naturally, Seino's "Sky Restaurant" is less languid and slightly bouncier/breezier although the mood is still very much that of a good expensive dinner at the top of the Keio Plaza Hotel in Shinjuku (I'll have my steak au poivre medium-rare, s'il vous plait). Plus, the City Pop tropes are in there with the electric guitar and the saxophone. And I swear that the singer sounds a whole lot like another City Pop princess, Miki Matsubara（松原みき）, performing this one.
Jun Shibata（柴田淳）is a singer-songwriter that I've heard about during my years in Japan but never covered on the blog. I will have to rectify that somehow. From what I know, she's usually in the J-Pop field but in the video above, she gives a nice jazz performance of "Sky Restaurant". Her version pops up in an album of covers that she recorded back in 2012 titled "Cover '70s" which peaked at No. 7 on Oricon.
No matter what the arrangement, though, "Sky Restaurant" is quite the masterpiece.