Japanese singer-songwriter, Utada Hikaru will release her first single, “Oozora de Dakishimete” from Epic Records Japan, a division of Sony Music Entertainment Japan, on Monday, July 10th 2017. Her second single, “Forevermore” will follow its release on Friday, July 20th 2017. Her last record with Universal, Fantome, sold approx. 1.05 million copies worldwide (#23 on IFPI’s top selling albums chart from Global Music Report).
Utada Hikaru’s first single at EPIC Records Japan, “Oozora de Dakishimete” aired in Japan in a TV commercial for Suntory’s natural mineral water (Suntory Tennensui). Since it’s airing, Utada Hikaru has been in such a spotlight that her commercial had over 1 million views on YouTube within 10 days of its release.
In a behind the scenes interview, she explains about filming the commercial and the featured track as follows:
“Last time, I was already working on the track [‘michi’] for my album release when I received the offer to feature in a commercial. But this time, we had gotten an offer before working on the song, so I kept imagining how the commercial might look as I wrote the song. In “Oozora de Dakishimete”, the lyrics talk about being “reunited by someone you thought you’d never see”, in a “place in the clouds”, “in the big sky”, “in the blue skies”. When I went to go film the actual commercial, the setting was actually on a mountaintop and was surrounded by fog. So I felt really immersed in the lyrics.”
Utada Hikaru’s first single is still trending, but her second single release has already been announced! “Forevermore” is going to be used as the theme song for TBS Networks’ Nichijyou Gekijyou (Sunday Theater) drama series, “Gomen, Aishiteru” (I’m sorry, I love you). Its digital release will be on July 28th.
Her song, “Hanataba wo Kimini” was used as the main theme for NHK (Japanese national public broadcasting)’s renzoku TV shosetsu (a morning drama series), “Toto-Neechan” in 2016. But it has been 9 years since her song was last used in a private broadcasting show. (Last used was “eternally –drama mix-“in Fuji TV Network’s drama series, “Innocent Love”.)
Worldly acclaimed drummer, Chris Dave has worked on both singles, making both songs a must hear!
<CHRIS DAVE PROFILE>
Born in Houston, Texas
Chris Dave started his drumming career when he met Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis in college. His extraordinary drum techniques has achieved praises from top artists like Robert Glasper, D’Angelo, Adele, Justin Bieber, etc.
In 2016, he was chosen in “100 Greatest Drummers of All Time” in Rolling Stone magazine.
<Utada Hikaru PROFILE>
Born in New York, NY
Utada Hikaru released her debut single, “Automatic/Time Will Tell” on December 9th, 1998 at the young age of 16. It sold more than two million copies; instantly making her one of Japan’s top artists.
Just a few months later, she released her first album “First Love”, which made record CD sales in Japan, which still remains unbroken. Every album she has released since then has topped charts, and in 2007, her single “Flavor of Life” set the world record in its number of downloads.
In 2010, Utada Hikaru decided to take a break from her music career to focus on her personal life. In April 2016, she restarted her music career by releasing singles “Hanataba wo Kimini” and “Manatsu no Tooriame”.
Her sixth studio album, “Fantome”, released in Sepember 2016. It achieved critical success worldwide, and her album stayed #1 on Oricon charts for four consecutive weeks; a first for Utada Hikaru. The album also ranked 3rd on the US iTunes chart. “Fantome” sold over a million copies, combining CD sales and digital sale.
In March 2017, Utada Hikaru signed with EPIC Records Japan, a Sony Music label.
■ First Single:”Oozora de Dakishimete”
(Used in “Suntory Tennensui” commercial)
Monday, July 10th 2017 (DIGITAL RELEASE)
■ Second Single: “Forevermore”
Main theme for TBS Network Nichijyou Gekijyou “Gomen, Aishiteru”
Friday, July 28th (DIGITAL RELEASE)