Random J Pop playlist: Hikaru Utada R&B & Ballads

Random J Pop playlist: Hikaru Utada (R&B and Ballads) | Random J Pop

I created these playlists a while back. Like...a WHIIIIIIIIIIIIIILE back. They had followers not long after I made them, so some of ya'll found them from the offset. But there they are. Officially posted and shared right here at Random J Pop.

These playlists focus on the two styles of music that Hikaru Utada started out with and has maintained pretty much throughout her career. R&B and ballads.

Whilst Hikaru hasn't explicitly stuck to R&B over the years, some of her songs still pull from it. In fact, the only album of hers which didn't feature a song you could put in the R&B ball park was Ultra blue. Every other album of hers, including her US releases, feature at least 1 song you can say is R&B or R&B-like.


When it comes to the ballads, there is no question; Hikaru stays delivering them with every album. The way in which Hikaru Utada generally approaches her music and then scalps with commercial success put her on a whole other level to her peers long ago. But the way in which she approaches ballads is also what seperates her. Many Japanese artists land a style of ballad and never move out of it. *Cue Ayumi Hamasaki and Kumi Koda walking onto the stage* Hikaru Utada has always played with the way she delivers ballads to the point where no two sound alike, but they are still distinctly HER style. She's not afraid to try new things with her ballad arrangements and I love that.


I didn't realise until I put the playlist together just how much I listen to her ballads. In fact, they're probably the songs of hers I listen to the most. Despite a couple of folk dragging "Hatsukoi" here on this blog, I fucking adore that song. It's gorgeous. And one my of my most played Hikaru Utada songs and quite possibly one of my favourite songs of hers, would probably be "Deep river".

At time of writing, Hatsukoi is not available for streaming. So the playlist is void of the album title track and also "Chikai". But bitch, once that shit goes up, you can rest assured they'll be added along with "YĆ«nagi".

Listen: Hikaru Utada: R&B on Spotify | Hikaru Utada: Ballads on Spotify

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