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  • Writer's pictureAkiko Murakami

Sakura, a popular theme for many J-pops

Among many beautiful flowers, for the Japanese, cherry blossoms (Sakura) is by far the most popular one. Historically, sakura has been used for themes of poems, literature, paintings, kimono patterns, etc. representing spring season.

Today, Most Japanese schools and public buildings have cherry blossom trees outside of them. Since the fiscal year and school year both begin in April, in many parts of Honshu (main island) the first day of work or school coincides with the cherry blossom season.

Therefore, most Japanese have at least some vivid memories with




feelings associated with SAKURA and its blooming season.

Reflecting this national phenomenon, many pop music have been made, and I 'd like to share 3 of them with you.


The original song

English version was covered by a Korean-American singer-songwriter,



Another song I personally like is "Sakura" lyrics, solo song by Naotaro Moriyama. (森山直太朗). His mother, Ryoko Moriyama(森山良子) is a famous and great singer from Okinawa, too.

The following Youtube video was filmed in a female high school in Miyagi prefecture just before the graduation ceremony. This high school has one of the top ranking choir. After this, he actually made a surprise visit on the very day of the graduation ceremony to sing this song on stage, too.

As you can imagine....many girls were moved and shed tears...!

These songs never lose popularity as the students keep singing with old friends at Karaoke when they meet years and years later at reunions.

Youtube video ♪ "SAKURA (さくら)” by Naotaro Moriyama

Lyrics Translation

Surely we're waiting, for the day we can see you again. On the street lined with cherry blossom trees We'll wave our hands and yell out. Whenever we suffer or start to lose heart We feel we can hang in there because you're smiling. We can hear the song from back then from in those hazy scenes. cherry blossoms now in full bloom scattered fleetingly I know it's fate, farewell my friend. when it's time to leave on your journey, with that unchanging feeling. now... I wonder if now we can say those words without pretense. Words from the heart, Words to hope for your bright future. It's as if the bustling city is rushing us. cherry blossoms just floating to the ground believing one day they'll be reborn Don't cry my friend, It's a shame but it's time to go with that unadorned smile... ahh cherry blossoms now flying in the air eternally rustling awash in light farewell, my friend let's meet again here. on the street scattered with cherry blossoms.

The 3rd song is "Sakura zaka (Cherry blossom Hill 桜坂)" by Masaharu Fukuyama (福山雅治), a very popular handsome actor, as well as a good singer-songwriter.

A charity live concert video in Fukushima, 2011, 6 months after the massive North Japan Great earthquake, tsunami, and the notorious nuclear accident.

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