Mariya Takeuchi


is a Japanese singer and songwriter. Regarded as an influential figure in the city pop genre, she is one of the List of best-selling music artists in Japan, best-selling music artists in Japan, having sold over 16 million records, and has received several accolades. Takeuchi was born in Taisha, Shimane, Taisha, Hikawa District, Shimane, Hikawa district, now the city of Izumo, Shimane, and attended Keio University. She made her singing debut after signing with the Bertelsmann Music Group, RCA record label in 1978, with whom she released her debut album , which peaked at No. 17 on Oricon Charts. She then released four albums between 1979 and 1981, all of which obtained commercial success, including the 1980 album , which became her first work to peak at No. 1 on Oricon Charts. Takeuchi then announced she would go on a temporary hiatus in 1981, terminating her contract with RCA records. Three years later, Takeuchi and her husband Tatsuro Yamashita signed with Moon Records, and she made her comeback with her sixth studio album ''Variety (Mariya Takeuchi album), Variety'' in 1984, which was released internationally and shot her to mainstream success, and peaked at No. 1 on Oricon Charts. The track "Plastic Love", which was released in 1985 as a single, became a surprise hit outside of Japan in 2017 after a YouTube upload of the song went viral. The song has since attained a cult following and is seen as the staple in a revival of interest in city pop in the late 2010s. Following the success of her ventures throughout the late 1970s and 1980s, Takeuchi began releasing albums less frequently, her latest release being in 2014 as she shifted her focus to work and release standalone singles. Since 1981, every single she has released has charted on the Oricon Charts. She has stayed with the Moon record label, working with the different branches since signing in 1984 and since 1998 has been signed with Warner Music Japan, with whom she released the single in 2012, for which she re-recorded in 2020; the latter of which charted at No. 1 on Oricon Charts, making her the oldest singer to achieve a No. 1 single.

Early life

Takeuchi was born in Taisha, Shimane, Taisha in the Hikawa District, Shimane, Hikawa district of Shimane Prefecture in Japan. She grew up in the family ''Shinise Ryokan (inn), Ryokan'' (Japanese long-established inn) business by the name of ''Takenoya'', that her paternal great grandfather founded in 1877. Her family always played records from all over the world. She had already learned to play piano and guitar by third grade, but the Beatles left an impression that inspired her to travel. In 1972, for her third year of high school, she studied in Rock Falls, Illinois, United States, as an international exchange student through the AFS Intercultural Programs. Her nickname was Mako, as one of the AFS yearbooks has a caption that reads Mariya "Mako" Takeuchi. She entered the Japanese Keio University in 1974 majoring in English literature and won a nationwide English recitation contest by ''The Japan Times'' in the spring of that year. She married fellow musician Tatsuro Yamashita in April 1982. They have one daughter.


Takeuchi joined the music club of the university and there she was invited to participate in 's recordings and in March 1978 so-called the omnibus album recordings. In August that year she signed up with the Bertelsmann Music Group, RCA recording label, and in November her debut single , and the debut album were released. The 1979 singles , were hits, and she won the 1979 Japan Record Awards, Tokyo Music Festival, Japan Music Awards, Shinjuku Music Festival and Ginza Music Festival best new artist awards as a singer. The 1980 single was also a hit. Takeuchi has had one song (1981) appear on the NHK program ''Minna no Uta''. From the late 1970s to the early 1980s, she recorded five albums and several singles. Those recordings featured dozens of prominent Japanese and North American songwriters, instrumentalists and producers, including Kazuhiko Katō, Tetsuji Hayashi, Shigeru Suzuki, Masamichi Sugi, Shigeru Suzuki, Takashi Matsumoto (lyricist), Takashi Matsumoto, Al Capps, Peter Allen (musician), Peter Allen, David Lasley, Alan O'Day, David Foster, Jim Keltner, Jay Graydon, Steve Lukather, Jeff Porcaro, David Hungate, and a fellow RCA artist and her future partner and husband, Tatsuro Yamashita. One of her songs from the 1980 album , "Heart to Heart" (music by Roger Nichols (songwriter), Roger Nichols), was given English lyrics and a new title, "Now". It was recorded by the Carpenters, released in 1983, and was the last recording by the late Karen Carpenter. At the end of 1981 after the release of her fifth album , She announced she was going to take a break for a while and paused doing concerts and releases, and got married six months later. While taking a break she continued composing for numerous different Japanese idol, idols and singers such as Naoko Kawai, Hiroko Yakushimaru, Yukiko Okada, Akina Nakamori, Miho Nakayama, Hiromi Iwasaki, Masahiko Kondo, among many others. Several of these songs scored top-ten on the Oricon, such as and performed by Naoko Kawai, performed by Yukiko Okada, performed by Miho Nakayama. Takeuchi has often re-recorded those songs for her own album. , a song originally written for the album by Akina Nakamori, became known by the composer's recorded version, and had been covered by many artists. "Genki o Dashite, Genki wo Dashite", a song first recorded by Hiroko Yakushimaru, is recognized as one of Takeuchi's notable compositions. The song was later covered by Hitomi Shimatani in 2003, and became a moderate hit. Since her return to the Japanese music industry in 1984, she has recorded seven successful studio albums that mainly consist of her self-written songs, and all of them have reached No. 1 on the Japanese Oricon chart. As a singer-songwriter, she has produced eight top-ten hit singles on the Oricon chart, including , , , and her only No. 1 hit .Yamachan Land , Single Chart Daijiten , Mariya Takeuchi (Archives of the chart positions and sales of the singles)
In addition to her work as a performer, she has continued writing songs and lyrics for other singers, including Ryōko Hirosue, Takako Matsu, Riho Makise, Seiko Matsuda, Masayuki Suzuki and Tackey & Tsubasa. Several of these songs scored top-ten on the Oricon, such as performed by Ryōko Hirosue, "Miracle Love" performed by Riho Makise, performed by Takako Matsu, and performed by Mana Ashida. Up to September 2014, Takeuchi had released 12 studio albums, 42 singles, several compilations and a live album which was recorded in 2000. Her total sales have been estimated at more than 16 million units by 2009. Her 1994 compilation, ''Impressions'', sold more than 3 million copies in Japan alone, and became her best-selling album.Yamachan Land , Album Chart Daijiten , Mariya Takeuchi (Archives of the chart positions and sales of the albums)
In addition to her musical career, she has also managed her family's ''Ryokan'' ''Takenoya'' since May 2018 "until the next generation can take over". Outside of Japan, she is best known for the city pop song "Plastic Love" from her number-one album ''Variety (Mariya Takeuchi album), Variety'' (1984). At the time of the song's release, Takeuchi had not considered attempting to release her music in the Western world, stating in a 2018 interview, "Considering that [the song] was mostly performed in Japanese, we figured it would be impossible to go abroad." The song went Viral video, viral after it was uploaded to YouTube during the mid-late 2010s. Popularized overseas via the vaporwave and future funk scenes, the song has received more than 67 million views on YouTube as of June 2021. It has received critical acclaim, with ''Noisey'' calling it "the best pop song in the world" and Gorillaz calling it "a wonder woman slab of Japanese funk". K-pop singer Kim Yu-bin (musician), Yubin's "City Love" is based on the song. The Black Madonna, The Blessed Madonna closed a ''Resident Advisor'' November 2017 mix with a rendition of the song. Chai (band), Chai released a cover of the song in 2020. "Plastic Love" has also inspired numerous fan art and videos. On 17 May 2019, Warner Music Japan released on YouTube a short version of a music video for the song, 35 years after its initial release. A longer, five minute version was subsequently released on 12 November 2021.


Studio albums



Songs written for other singers


External links

* (in Japanese) *
Warner Music Japan , Mariya Takeuchi (Japanese)

History of Takeuchi family
on the ''Takenoya'' roykan site {{DEFAULTSORT:Takeuchi, Mariya 1955 births Living people 20th-century Japanese women singers 21st-century Japanese women singers Keio University alumni Japanese women pop singers Japanese women singer-songwriters Musicians from Shimane Prefecture Disco musicians