Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: A Taste of Honey


First recorded (as “Ue no Muite Arukou”) by Kyu Sakamoto (JPN #1 1961 |US #1/R&B #18 May 1963 |UK #6 Jun 1963).
Also recorded by Clyde Beavers (1963), The Fabulous Echoes (1965), Jewel Akens (as “My First Lonely Night”) (1966), Selena (1990).
Other hit versions by Kenny Ball & His Jazzmen (UK #10 Jan 1963), A Taste of Honey (US #3/R&B #1 1981), 4 P.M. (US #8/R&B #75/UK #152 1994).

From the wiki: “‘Ue o Muite Arukō’, ‘I Look Up As I Walk’) is a Japanese-language song first recorded in 1963 by Japanese crooner Kyu Sakamoto, and composed by Hachidai Nakamura (music) and Rokusuke Ei (lyrics). Ei wrote the lyrics while returning home from a protest against the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan, feeling dejected about the failure of the protest movement. But, Ei purposely rendered the lyrical content generic so that the lines might refer to any lost love. In Anglophone countries ‘Ue o Muite Arukō’ is best known under the alternative title ‘Sukiyaki’ (a term with no relevance to the song’s lyrics). The English-language title – for a Japanese hot pot dish – actually has nothing to do with the lyrics or the meaning of the song. A Newsweek magazine columnist noted that the re-titling was like issuing ‘Moon River’ in Japan under the title ‘Beef Stew’.