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Japan’s Singing Seiyuu: What happened?

31 January 2008

fatestaysmart_avatarAfter I had the last straw with Windows Media Player, I decided to make the gradual switch over to iTunes and properly organize my music the way I want to hear it. Of course, I began with my Japanese music collection which takes up about three-fourths of my pathetic 35GB HD I have yet to upgrade. Anyway, I started with music I had not listened to in a very long while, which included my The Best Slayers collection, with most of the songs on that album sung by the great classic Japanese seiyuu of the 90s, Megumi Hayashibara. I remember dancing and singing along to “Kujikenaikara!” (Slayers ED 1) in my kitchen while washing dishes. Man…those songs took me back.

lina inverseWhen I first was exposed to subbed anime some six years ago, Slayers and Megumi Hayashibara as Lina Inverse were my firsts. Those were the days when the main character(s) also performed Opening and Ending themes to the anime they were cast in. I really must have caught the tailend of that era because since then, I cannot recall liking a seiyuu who also sang OP, ED, or even Image songs in the anime they were cast in. The only seiyuu and singer that rings a bell is the popular Nana Mizuki. What’s sad is that I only know her by name because I had an American friend while living in Osaka who went starry-eyed whenever he saw a DVD compilation by her. Has anyone else noticed this declining phenomenon?

With that in mind, and my otaku status no longer privy to the masses, I’d like to pose these questions to whomever will lend an ear:

Are there any singing seiyuu that you remember from your anime newbie days?

Do you still enjoy their songs today?

EDIT: I meant Nana Mizuki, not Nana Kitase. Sorry about the mix up!

3 Comments leave one →
  1. SinsI permalink
    31 January 2008 15:05:58

    Kitase? Maybe Nana Katase?

    While seiyu doesn’t sing OP’s and ED’s that often these days, you can see them singing in various drama CD’s, and there are lots and lots of them.
    My most recent favorite is Nabatame Hitomi’s Wolf in the Heart from Shakugan no Shana.

  2. 31 January 2008 15:09:15

    Actually I’m not sure what you’re talking about as seiyuu singing the opening and ending for the anime they are casted in is still a well and intact trend. Maybe you’re just not watching the right shows? Any show that is sponsered by King Records/Starchild and Lantis have a slew of seiyuu songs in them. I mean just look at Haruhi, Lucky Star, Nanoha for example.

    Either way, there are many seiyuu today whom can sing really really well and the standard right now is generally of a higher level than that of the mid 90s. Heck I started getting into seiyuu seriously during that time and now when I go back to the songs of “the good ol days”, sometimes I realise it’s just blind nostalogia. Hayashibara Megumi is/was good, but can she hold a candle to the breath-taking Mizuki Nana? I would say no.

    Of course, whether you like the songs the seiyuu sings are totally subjective and independent of the singing skills of the seiyuu. But the point remains that singing seiyuu are about a dime in a dozen right now.

  3. 31 January 2008 19:20:22

    Answering your question – yes. I still like ppl like Kuwashima Houko, Iwao Junko etc etc. The problem is that they don’t sing as much anymore so naturally, I’ve listened to them less and less over the years.

    Like houkoholic says, singing seiyuu are way more in abundance nowadays. You don’t like Haruhi or Lucky Star or Negima? Even this season, a good proportion of the OP or ED themes are performed by a seiyuu from the show – it’s around 6 out of 18-20 shows (H2O, Zetsubo-sensei, Minami-ke, Kimiaru etc)

    You must be watching the wrong anime, or you need to dig your ears ^^;;;

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