Continuing in my obsession with everything that isn’t happening on the field, this page will cover the various FC Tokyo-related CDs that have been released as well as “official” club songs.
スタジアムへ行こう (Let’s Go To The Stadium)
Played a good 45 minutes or so before every home game, “Stadium e Yukou” (“Let’s Go To The Stadium”) strikes the first-time listener as one of those cheesy corporate theme songs that all Japanese companies think is necessary. Then you find out that it was recorded by none other than legendary ska ensemble Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra. This is about the same as finding out that the conductor in the Thomas the Tank Engine TV series was none other than foulmouthed comedian George Carlin; it makes the work in question a little better just based on the reputation on the performer, but for the most part you’re just left wondering what the hell all involved were thinking at the time.
According to what I’ve found on the interwebs, the song was first performed by the band in a special pre-game concert before the 2004 season opener. Since then, it is traditionally played before every FC Tokyo home game. Ever since the team’s 2004 Nabisco Cup victory against Urawa Reds, Tokyo supporters have been known to sing the tune at Saitama Stadium just to piss off the Reds fans.
At the moment I can’t find any YouTube videos of the full song, but I’ll be sure to get it on camera this season. In the meantime, here are the lyrics with translation.
|Sutajiamu e yukou
Mune ga waku waku
Sutajiamu e yukou
Minna wa doki doki
La la la la la la Vamos Tokyo
|Let’s all go to the stadium
My heart is beating fast
Let’s all go to the stadium
La la la la la la Vamos Tokyo
Since this song, TSPO has continued to have some influence on FCT supporters. Fans regularly sing the Lupin the 3rd Theme (famously covered by SkaPara) before the second half of most matches, and Naohiro Ishikawa’s supporter chant is based on the melody of the band’s hit song “Downbeat Stomp.” In winter of 2009, “Let’s Go To The Stadium” was finally made available for purchase as a cellphone ringtone in conjunction with the band’s new album, Paradise Blue, which featured a cover of the Liverpool and FCT anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone.
The Midwest Vikings – Vamos Tokyo
Yusuke Chiba is one of Japan’s most influential vocalists of the last 20 years, having helmed Thee Michelle Gun Elephant, the side project Rosso, and his current band The Birthday. He’s also an FC Tokyo supporter, and in 2005 collaborated with former TMGE drummer Kazuyuki Kuhara and two unknown musicians to form The Midwest Vikings. All four band members perform under aliases, wearing FC Tokyo uniforms with custom names as well as sunglasses, bandannas, and sombreros.
The members are as follows (numbers refer to their uniforms):
02 LACOSTE (vocals, guitar)
7 ARNOLD (guitar)
13 TOROY (contrabass)
63 HANG TEN (drums, melodica)
The band’s activity consisted of one live show (August 9th 2005 at Shibuya’s Club Crawl) and the October 5th 2005 release of VAMOS TOKYO!, their first and only maxi-single. The single consisted of three tracks: VAMOS TOKYO!, Let’s Kick Go Go Blue And Red Boys, and a cover of You’ll Never Walk Alone.
Awesome, is it not? You can still find the CD in some of the larger stores in Japan. Tower Records even had a special display to promote the album’s release, featuring the uniforms worn by the band:
Lollapalooza and “City Bred, Two Colors”
Anxious to make us all forget about the 2007 season, FC Tokyo hired corporate song factory Lollapalooza to create new background music for player introductions, walk-on music, that sort of thing. Lollapalooza also threw in a new pre-game singalong song in the form of “City Bred, Two Colors,” which makes スタジアムへ行こう sound like a goddamned symphony orchestra in comparison. Some random Japanese singer with really poor English pronunciation, picking at an acoustic guitar and rambling about something involving how blue and red are the colors of the city and his heart. Here’s a really poor-quality YouTube video but you’ll probably get the idea.
As for the rest of the CD, here’s the tracklist and what the respective songs are used for:
１．Follow the count (Player warmup entrance music)
２．City bred two colors (You don’t really wanna sit here and listen to this shit, do you? Go get in line for beer before the game starts)
３．Take me to a game (Goalie warmup entrance music)
４．Opening goal (Postgame music)
５．Knights on the field (Player entrance music, first half)
６．Your voices make the stadium go round (Postgame music)
７．Outstanding (Player entrance music, second half)