August 10, 2021

Kazuya Kosaka

One of the rewards of listening to the Gold(en oldies) on J1 Radio is hearing covers of songs you never expected. Flash back to the late 1950s and early 1960s when Japan's television stations were first going on the air. They licensed Hollywood productions to fill in the program schedules (and still do).

Westerns were a staple on American television at the time, and so the genre naturally became a staple on Japanese television. Rawhide was a big hit. During a February 1962 publicity tour, Clint Eastwood, Paul Brinegar, and Eric Fleming met the Japanese press at the Palace Hotel in Tokyo.

It was only a matter of time before Japanese musicians began performing Western music and rockabilly. Kazuya Kosaka & The Wagon Masters not only covered the hits but reinterpreted them as well.

Here is his version of "Jailhouse Rock."

Kazuya Kosaka is better remembered today in Japan for his long career in movies and television.

I added the Rawhide video thanks to the comment below. There are also J1 Radio apps for Roku, Android, and iPhone.

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# posted by Anonymous Anonymous
8/12/2021 6:52 PM   
3 years late, but I also heard "Rawhide" on J1 Gold the other day, and I finally found it on youtube: