It is a well-known fact that countless 60s popular and classical music from foreign countries become English language hits in the UK, US and other parts of the world. This posting will focus on some of these classics. We start in Asia.
MANDARIN: Rose, Rose, I Love You is an English adaptation of the Mandarin song, Méigui Méigui Wǒ Ai Ni by Yao Li (1940s), the only song written by a Chinese to become a major English language chart hit.
The English lyrics were written by a British DJ, Wilfred Thomas and recorded by 50s pop singer Frankie Laine and the Norman Luboff Choir, with Paul Weston and his Orchestra in 1951. The song, with different English lyrics, was also covered in the UK by Petula Clark (1951) and by Kyu Sakamoto (1960s).
JAPANESE: The second Asian song, Sukiyaki by Kyu Sakamoto went to the top in 1963. So far, this is the only song by a Japanese singer to hit the ceiling in the U.S. The Japanese title is Ue O Muite Aruko, which means I Look Up When I Walk. It is definitely a Singaporean favourite even till today. The Blue Diamonds (Holland) recorded it with English lyrics in 1963 and personally, is one of the best versions!
FILIPINO: Another Asian pop classic, the very famous, Anak (1971) or child is a Tagalog song written and sung by Filipino folk-singer Freddie Aguilar. It has been translated to over a hundred local and international languages. The English version, by Aguilar, is a direct translation of the original and should not be missed by anyone who loves a beautiful rendition of an exceptionally sad song.
Freddie Aguilar Anak Philippino Music Influence (June 24, 2009)
Sukiyaki Kyu Sakamoto US/Japanese 60s Music (July 4, 2009)
Information: Wikipedia Songs
Original Article: Andy Lim