Welcome to episode 50 of Holly Jolly X’masu! In this episode, I’ll be discussing the 1977 compilation, “Merry Christmas (Bouquet of Hearts Present Series),” from King Records.
When I started buying records a couple years ago, I had one very short-term goal: To buy the half dozen albums I’d heard about while trying to find Akira Ishikawa’s “Drum Christmas Drum.” Off the top of my head, those were “Drum Christmas Drum,” Jun Fukamachi’s “Now Sound Christmas,” Jimmy Takeuchi’s “White X’mas Drum Drum,” Chiemi Eri’s “Chiemi Sings Christmas Carols,” Jackey Yoshikawa’s “Christmas With Blue Comets,” and Takeshi Terauchi’s “Bunnies’ Christmas Party.” I hadn’t heard any of the albums all the way through, and you couldn’t even find clips online for two of them. I knew next to nothing about the albums and the artists behind them, and didn’t have much of an idea of how to find out more about them.
After I got “Merry Christmas (Bouquet of Hearts Present Series),” the associations I made and the work we did on it helped me gain the skills I needed to find the records I was looking for, and discover far more than I had ever hoped for. It also gave me the confidence I needed, maybe not to start my podcast, but in myself and my ability to do the research I’d need to do to keep it going.
When I started my podcast, I had doubts about ever getting through the first year, whether I’d ever have enough albums for a dozen full episodes, and whether I’d be able to keep up the grueling pace of one episode per month. Now I’m releasing my 50th episode and I’ve barely scratched the surface. I’ve mentioned several times that every album I cover is from my personal collection. I have a literal wealth of records left to cover, including many of the most noteworthy and influential albums and singles that have shaped Japanese Christmas music over the past 70 years. I likely would have never found a lot of those if not for the things I learned from acquiring this album.
I hope you’ve enjoyed listening to “Merry Christmas (Bouquet of Hearts Present Series),” and learning about some of the songs and musicians featured on it. Join me back here later this month as I talk about another virtually unknown album I unearthed, Goro “Smiley” Asahina’s “Dancing Through Blue Christmas.” It’s a fantastic record and one you don’t want to miss!
As always, any feedback on this episode would be appreciated. If have any suggestions, or if you’d like to recommend a song or album for a future episode, drop me a line and let me know.
Remember, I’ve added a button to my Ko-fi page. If you’d like to support me one cup of coffee at a time, a donation is only $3. I’ve also opened a Redbubble store. I only have a couple designs up, but keep an eye on it as I’ll be trying to add more. Half of any proceeds or donations received will be donated to support the people of Ukraine, while the rest will be used to purchase new Japanese Christmas music to review for future episodes. You can also find me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. And if you get a chance, leave me a review on iTunes. Thanks!
Listen to this episode of the Holly Jolly Xmasu Podcast
Author: Holly Jolly X’masu