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Mari Amachi (天地 真理, Amachi Mari, born November 5, 1951) is a Japanese female singer and actress, who was famous in 1970s' Japan. On October 1, 1971, she debuted with the single "Mizuiro no Koi." She was born as Mari Saito in Omiya, Saitama Prefecture. She got five Oricon No.1 songs, a record as a female singer which was later broken by Seiko Matsuda. She started the era of Japanese idols in the 1970s and 1980s.[1][2] Mari Amachi was the top female vocalist of Sony Music Entertainment in Japan.[3]

Contents

BiographyEdit

While Amachi was still in elementary school, her mother taught her how to play the piano.[4] In 1967 she attended the National Music University High School located in Zama, Kanagawa, where she studied piano and vocals. She graduated in March 1970.[5]

Mari Amachi debuted in October 1971 with the single "Mizuiro No Koi".[6] She was promoted alongside Rumiko Koyanagi and Saori Minami, and they were dubbed the "San-Nin Musume" (Three young girls).[7][8][9] Before them, Hibari Misora, Chiemi Eri and Izumi Yukimura were promoted in the same fashion.[10] In 1973, Amachi, Koyanagi and Minami were followed by Momoe Yamaguchi, Junko Sakurada and Masako Mori, who were known as "Hana No Chu 3 Trio" (The Trio of Third-Year Junior High School Students).[7]

Mari Amachi proved to be a huge success in Japan.[11][3] She was one of the first Japanese singers to be deemed an "idol".[12][1][2] Her single "Chiisana Koi" was the first of five number 1 hits on the Oricon chart list.[13] No other female Japanese entertainer had achieved this, yet her record was broken by Pink Lady in the late 70s and their record was subsequently broken by Seiko Matsuda in the 80s.[8] At the 15th Japan Record Awards the single Wakaba No Sasayaki won the award for best musical arrangement of the year, and at the 6th Japan Record Sales Award the song was awarded with a gold medal.[14] She was the second best selling Japanese artist in 1972 and 1973.[15]

By the summer of 1972, her single "Hitori Janai No" had sold over 600,000 copies and proved to be her second #1,[8][16] and she was invited to perform on the 23d edition of Kōhaku Uta Gassen.[17] That same year Mari Amachi starred in her own television series, "The Mari Amachi Show", which was aired by TBS from 1972 up to 1975.[18][19] The following year, Mari Amachi and fellow idol Hiromi Go were reported to be responsible for grossing more than $45 million for Sony Music Entertainment.[20] She was dubbed "Sony's Snow White".[21]

Mari Amachi also performed on the 24th edition of Kōhaku Uta Gassen,[22] as well as the 25th.[23]

Apart from being a singer, Mari Amachi was also an actress.[24]

In 1977 Mari Amachi withdrew from public life citing thyroid problems, although she later admitted she was suffering from a depression.[25] In 1979 she returned to showbusiness, and was welcomed back with a large press party at CBS Sony's recording studio.[25] Her record sales declined sharply, and she released her last single in 1983.

By the end of 2015, Mari Amachi was reported to live in poverty in a retirement home.[26]

DiscographyEdit

Top 10 singlesEdit

# Title Release Date/Chart Position Sales[27] Cumulative [28]
1 Mizuiro No Koi (水色の恋 Light Blue Love)
Debut single
1971-10-01 (#3) 423,000 800,000
2 Chiisana Koi (ちいさな恋 A Little Love) 1972-02-05 (#1) 547,000 900,000
3 Hitori Janai No (ひとりじゃないの Not Alone) 1972-05-21 (#1) 601,000 1.100,000
4 Niji Wo Watatte (虹をわたって Over The Rainbow) 1972-09-01 (#1) 517,000 1,000,000
5 Futari No Nichiyobi (ふたりの日曜日 A Sunday For Two) 1972-12-05 (#3) 447,000 1,000,000
6 Wakaba No Sasayaki (若葉のささやき In The Whispers Of The Leaves) 1973-03-21 (#1) 481,000 1,100,000
7 Koisuru Natsu No Hi (恋する夏の日 Summer Days Of Love)
Signature song
1973-07-01 (#1) 502,000 1,100,000
8 Sora Ippai No Shiawase (空いっぱいの幸せ A Sky Full Of Happiness)' 1973-10-21 (#3) 241,000 Unknown
9 Koibito Tachi No Minato (恋人たちの港 Harbour Of The Lovers)
1974-02-01 (#4) 212,000 Unknown
10 Koi To Umi To T-SHIRT To (恋と海とTシャツと Love And The Sea And A T-Shirt) 1974-06-01 (#8) 157,000 Unknown
11 Omoide No SERENADE (想い出のセレナーデ A Serenade Of Memories) 1974-09-01 (#4) 324,000 Unknown

Top 10 AlbumsEdit

# Title Release Date/Chart Position
1 Mizuiro No Koi (水色の恋 Light Blue Love)
Debut album
1971 (#1)
2 Chiisana Koi (ちいさな恋 A Little Love) 1972(#1)
3 Gift Pack Mari Amachi (ギフト・パック 天地真理)
Best of
1972(#1)
4 Niji Wo Watatte (虹をわたって Over The Rainbow) 1972 (#2)
5 Ashita He No MELODY (明日へのメロディー Melody Of Tomorrow) 1972 (#1)
6 Wakaba No Sasayaki (若葉のささやき In The Whispers Of The Leaves) 1973 (#1)
7 Koisuru Natsu No Hi (恋する夏の日 Summer Days Of Love) 1973 (#3)

Kōhaku Uta GassenEdit

  • Hitori Janai No (1972)
  • Koisuru Natsu No Hi (1973)
  • Omoide No Serenade (1974)

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Show biz exploits 'volunteerism' image in packaging of latest teen idol". The Japan Times. 2006-07-06. Archived from the original on 2009-02-07. Retrieved 2009-01-22.
  2. ^ a b シングル主流の70年代、高度経済成長時代の後に見え始めた新トレンド (in Japanese). Oricon. 2006-05-31. Archived from the original on 2011-07-26. Retrieved 2010-09-22.
  3. ^ a b Billboard Magazine, 1972. 1972-08-05.
  4. ^ Shiozaki, Yukio. The Gospel of Ice.
  5. ^

    国立音高在学中の1969年よりヤマハ音楽振興会附属教室ヴォーカルコースで学び、プロ歌手となるためのレッスンに励んだ.

  6. ^ Kikuchi, Hiroshi (1995). 文藝春秋. 文藝春秋社. p. 388.
  7. ^ a b Craig, Timothy J. (2000). Japan Pop!: Inside the World of Japanese Popular Culture. M.E. Sharpe. p. 317. ISBN 0-7656-0561-9.
  8. ^ a b c "Sponichi article on Mari Amachi" (in Japanese).
  9. ^ Aoyagi, Hiroshi. Island Of Eight Million Smiles. p. 6 & 130.
  10. ^ "Hara, 82, to hang up saxophone". The Japan Times. 2008-12-03. Retrieved 2009-02-11.
  11. ^ Kase, Kimio (2005). Transformational CEOs. EE. p. 163.
  12. ^ Galbraith, Patrick (2012). Idols and Celebrity in Japanese Media Culture. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 5. ISBN 978-0-230-29830-9.
  13. ^ Billboard Magazine, April 1972. 1972-04-08.
  14. ^

    この年の7月19日、天地の母が東京・新宿に小料理店「てまり」を営業開始。

  15. ^ Koike, Shoin (1997). Star Tanjou & The Golden 70's. 夢を食った男たち. ISBN 4883157628.
  16. ^ Billboard Magazine, Hits of the world, 1972. 1972-07-29.
  17. ^ "Official NHK site detailing the 23d edition of Kohaku Uta Gassen" (in Japanese).
  18. ^ Billboard Magazine, October 1972. 1972-10-28.
  19. ^ Nihon Butai Terebi Bijutsuka Kyōkai (1985). Stage & Television Design of Japan. Keishosha Pub. Co. p. 226.
  20. ^ Billboard Magazine, 1973. 1973-02-24.
  21. ^ 音楽CD検定公式ガイドブック. ONGAKUSHUPPANSHACo. 2007. ISBN 978-4861710308.
  22. ^ "Official NHK site detailing the 24th edition of Kohaku Uta Gassen" (in Japanese).
  23. ^ "Official NHK site detailing the 25th edition of Kohaku Uta Gassen" (in Japanese).
  24. ^ Clements, Jonathan (2003). The Dorama Encyclopedia: A Guide to Japanese TV Drama Since 1953. Stone Bridge Press.
  25. ^ a b "Daily Shincho" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2019-03-21.
  26. ^ "2015 article on Mari Amachi" (in Japanese).
  27. ^ "Oricon sale history of Mari Amachi" (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved March 26, 2019.
  28. ^ 天地, 真理 (1997). スリムになるってステキなことネ―天地真理の白雪姫ダイエット. 双葉社. ISBN 4-575-28699-0.

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