Thursday, November 20, 2014
Megumi Hayashibara -- November Rain
Today’s my dad’s birthday and that’s actually the only thing about November that I really care about (my dad doesn’t like Megumi’s songs, so that post is not really paying homage to him). Besides a couple of holidays here and there, nothing really exciting happens in this month. Also, as I always passes through November thinking about December, I consider it more like a transition month than anything.
Well, but if I had to choose a song that always comes to my mind when I think about November, that would be Megumi’s “November Rain”, a character song from the famous Ranma ½ ( らんま½) anime.
In Ranma ½, Megumi Hayashibara (林原めぐみ) got her first important role in an anime series, the part of female Ranma. Although I’m not going to describe the story here, it’s important to know that Ranma (早乙女乱馬) was a guy who, thanks to a Chinese curse, got transformed into a girl everytime cold water was thrown into him (hot water transformed him back into a guy). That said, “November Rain” starts with Akane (天道 あかね), the girl in love with Ranma, slapping him in the face just when the rain is about to start. Then, with the cold water (the rain), he turned into female Ranma, and that’s why Megumi actually sang the song.
Released in January 1991 as a single (literally a couple of months before her major label debut with the lovely “Nijiiro no Sneaker” [虹色のSneaker]), “November Rain” was Megumi’s third overall single. About the song itself, it’s quite nice to see how hard she tried to sing this sad love ballad with her yet untrained vocals. Although I agree that it isn’t a treat for everyone, I quite like the result, and the melancholic piano-driven arrangement helps as well. Unfortunately, though, “November Rain” was never included in any of Megumi’s albums. As a fan, I’d love to see a compilation with all of her rarities, but it will probably never happen.
“November Rain” reached #64 on the Oricon charts. Lyrics were written by Yoshiko Miura (三浦徳子) and Ranba-teki uta gekidan bungei-bu (乱馬的歌劇団文芸部), while music was composed by Tsugutoshi Gotou (後藤次利). As for the arrangement, Kenji Kawai (川井憲次) was the responsible.