Name in Japanese: 小林 明子, コバヤシ アキコ, こばやし あきこ
Years Active: 1984 - Present
For a mainstream pop artist who is not well known outside of Japan, Akiko Kobayashi has had a rather odd career path, and one that has seen her work with an impressive list of international stars. Kobayashi was born in Tokyo in 1958. She first began singing at age 15, but did not begin writing songs until after turning 22. Her first break into the entertainment business was in 1984 as a songwriter, when the well known duo Bread & Butter recorded her songs "Second Serenade" and "Moon...read more
For a mainstream pop artist who is not well known outside of Japan, Akiko Kobayashi has had a rather odd career path, and one that has seen her work with an impressive list of international stars. Kobayashi was born in Tokyo in 1958. She first began singing at age 15, but did not begin writing songs until after turning 22. Her first break into the entertainment business was in 1984 as a songwriter, when the well known duo Bread & Butter recorded her songs "Second Serenade" and "Moon Eyes". Akiko subsequently signed with Bread & Butter's label, Fun House, as an artist. Her debut single in 1985, "Koi Ni Ochite" (Fall in Love), which was the theme song to the popular show Kinyobi no Tsumatachi e, was a huge hit, as was her album that same year Fall in Love. The Ventures and The Lettermen were among artists who did covers of "Koi Ni Ochite". The song was also covered in Chinese by Elisa Chan, and became a big hit in Hong Kong. The album was even released in Holland and Luxemburg, where she traveled for promotion. Her second studio album Kokoro No Mama Ni was released in 1986 and the third, Naturally, in 1987. She also released a live album and a ballads collection during this era. In 1988, Kobayashi recorded her sixth album, City of Angels, which Richard Carpenter produced. Kobayashi was a big fan of the Carpenters, who she first heard on FEN radio as a youngster, and who she credits for improving her English pronunciation. City of Angels was recorded over a three month period in Los Angeles. Five of the songs were sung in English, three were her compositions, and all of them were chosen and arranged by Carpenter, who recorded them with the Moscow International Symphonic Orchestra. The album sold fairly well, and the next year Carpenter joined Kobayashi for a show at NHK Hall. They sang ten songs together, including a three song Carpenters medley. This album led to a long term relationship with the Carpenters music. In 2003, twenty years after Karen Carpenter died from an eating disorder, she released a Carpenters cover album called A Song For You~ Carpenters Anthology. At an early age Kobayashi became interested in India, Indian art and Hinduism. When she was 21 she went to India for a month, and has gone back many times since. She became so inspired by India that in 1994 she changed her name to "holi", it seems naming herself after a Hindu Festival. In 1994 she made her first recording as holi, under the monkey puzzle tree, recorded in London with former members of the band Japan, Steve Jensen and Mick Karn. Her association with Japan is also a continuing one. Her album Beloved, released in 2000, was produced by former Japan member Steve Jensen. This however was not the full extent of her international music associations. In 1995 she took part on two songs included on the album Passengers: Original Soundtracks 1, a one-off all-star project that also included Brian Eno, U2, Howie B and Luciano Pavorotti. In 1995 she became a permanent resident of England. She also married an Englishman. Since then her recorded output seems to have slowed down. While holi/ Kobayashi retains a following as a singer, she is perhaps more successful as a songwriter. Among those who have recorded her songs are Akina Nakamori, Chikako Sawada, Kaho Shimada, Kiyomi Suzuki (sister of Rats & Stars member Masayuki Suzuki), Hi-Fi Set and Saito Yuki. In December 2004 BMG released a best of album, Golden Best.collapse
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Akiko Kobayashi - Koi ni Ochite - Fall in Love - 小林明子 恋 ...
admin added the Kanji name "明子" in March, 2009.
admin added the Kanji name "小林" in March, 2009.
Artist page created by: Keith Cahoon
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