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Songs of Sakamoto Maaya

Yo-ho! The inner jukebox returns with another serving of heart-warming music for the tired, sluggish and discouraged souls. This time, I would like to recommend some numbers by a lovely, talented lady whose repertoire stretches across voice acting, music, theatre, radio, television and writing. Incidentally, she is the voice behind Fujioka Haruhi of Ouran High School Host Club (one of my favourite anime). She is Sakamoto Maaya.

Has anybody watched the anime adaptation of Happy Cooking Graffiti? The opening theme song bears a pretty long title - Shiawase ni tsuite Watashi ga shitteiru Itsutsu no Houhou (The Five Methods of Obtaining Happiness That I'm Aware Of). This song also happens to be Sakamoto Maaya's latest single release. The concept of happiness varies with each individual, yet when it concerns food I'm certain that it resonates on a universal level. If I'm not mistaken, the anime pays a little tribute to Alice in Wonderland during the opening sequence. The paradise of mouth-watering happiness awaits Ryou and Kirin as they embark on an adventure peppered with motifs of corn, broccoli, green bell pepper, grapes, onion, apple...hmm I don't think that my eyes had missed out much. Anyway, that gigantic spoon goes really well with Kirin (?)!. Naturally, Ryou gets the frying pan. Oh wait, there are different kinds of seafood as well...okay, at this rate this would no longer be about Sakamoto Maaya's music. Pardon the digression.

I realised that over these years of appreciating anime and such, Sakamoto Maaya has played a major part in many of those theme songs which I love. She sang Purachina, the theme song for the third season of Cardcaptor Sakura. It was until recently (today to be precise) that I discovered to my horror (?) that she didn't voice any of the characters in that anime. For so many years, I had lived with the misconception that Sakamoto Maaya was Kinomoto Sakura! However, I was delighted to realise that she voiced Princess Tomoyo in Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle, apart from singing the ending theme songs. Not quite the same, yet there isn't much of a glaring difference.

As I have never completed the entirety of Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle, I'm only familiar with Loop, the first season's ending theme song. I used to wish that I could sing it in karaoke (and I never did). The lyrics reiterate the unwavering love between Sakura and Syaoran despite the odds ahead and beyond. Someday, both of them will meet again. There is a lot of warmth exuding in this number. The words also have a poetic, fairytale aura to them.

Even though Sakamoto Maaya's character Fujioka Haruhi was seriously tone-deaf in Ouran High School Host Club, she still managed to lend her voice in Mata Ashita!, the host club's character song. While Haruhi didn't exactly sing anything (hers were all spoken lines peppered during certain parts of the song), her presence was absolutely necessary since it completed the host club. It's a great pity that the anime lasted for just one season. I would so love to see everybody fighting over Haruhi again! By the way, Haruhi is married to one of the Hitachiin twins in reality. I might just write an article about him one of these days.

If anybody would like something to accompany their cardio workouts, I strongly recommend the opening theme song of Happy Cooking Graffiti. It would most likely make anybody take their workouts seriously since there is a constant impression of food lingering around. Did I mention that there is omu rice? In any case, Sakamoto Maaya continues to deliver heart-warming tunes in her career which spans over two decades.

Eccentrically Yours.

Written by J.Fluffysheep ♪

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