5. Yuzu — Ame-nochi-hareruya
“Ame-nochi-hareruya” (“After the Rain Comes the Sun“) is this duo’s 39th single, best known as the theme song of NHK’s morning drama series Gochisousan. It’s one of the few positive songs about rain that makes people look forward to the light that comes after bad weather. Of course, we should always question the general assumption that rain is the reason the weather is “bad,” but everyone gets the analogy.
4. FEMM — Kiss the Rain
FEMM stands for Far East Mention Mannequins. You may wonder what, exactly, mannequins have to do with music. This dance duo of female singers, LuLa and RiRi, are promoted as “mannequins with wills” that can only sing—not talk—causing much about the performers to still be shrouded in mystery.
While many J-pop songs associate rain with emotional pain, “Kiss the Rain,” as the title says, encourages people to embrace rain as a loving gift from above—and a substitute for a lover far away. So maybe a little more positive?
3. Masashi Sada — Amayadori
Masashi Sada has been active in Japan’s entertainment industry since 1973 as a singer, songwriter, actor, film director and novelist. “Amayadori” (“Taking Shelter from the Rain“) is a love story in itself, written from the perspective of a woman who meets her husband-to-be while taking shelter from the rain.
2. X Japan — Endless Rain
Known as one of the most influential bands in Japanese rock history, X Japan is often categorized as a hardcore rock band that pioneered the so-called “visual kei” genre—a style characterized by heavy make-up and flamboyant fashion.
X Japan released “Endless Rain” in 1989. The epic-length track (another X Japan signature) is about a broken heart longing for a former lover, one who left too suddenly to simply forget and move on.
1. Hideaki Tokunaga — Rainy Blue
Released in 1986 as his debut single, “Rainy Blue” is one of the best-known songs from veteran crooner Hideaki Tokunaga. The younger generation might know him better from his “Vocalist” album series, the first of which was released in 2005, in which Tokunaga covered smash hits from female singers and added his own twist to each.
As with many J-pop songs with lyrics associated with rain and love, “Rainy Blue” is also about lingering on lost love. Looks like rainy days are made for sentimentality!