A train melody is a succession of musically expressive tones played when a train is arriving at or about to depart from a train station. As part of train passenger operations, a train melody includes a succession of single notes organized to follow each other rhythmically to form a lilting, singular musical thought. In Japan, departing train melodies are arranged to invoke a feeling of relief in a train passenger after sitting down and moving with the departing train. In contrast, arriving train melodies are configured to cause alertness, such as to help travelers shake off sleepiness experienced by morning commuters.
Metro systems in several cities, including Budapest,Tokyo, Osaka, and Seoul mark train arrivals and departures with short melodies or "jingles".
In 1844, French classical pianist Charles-Valentin Alkan composed Le chemin de fer ("The Railroad"), a programmaticétude for piano designed to depict the happy journey of train passengers from departing a train station to portraying the train pulling into a second station. It is frequently cited as the first musical representation of railway travel. The joyful melody of Le chemin de fer subsequently has been celebrated as a forerunner to Arthur Honegger's famous orchestral work Pacific 231, which also represents a locomotive.
In August 1971, the Japanese private railway company Keihan Electric Railway became the first railway in Japan to introduce train melodies. Most of Japan's railway network was owned by the state until 1987. The former Japanese National Railways (JNR) company was privatized at that time, and the network was split between six major companies in the Japan Railways Group and a range of smaller operators. Under JNR ownership, bells were used at stations to mark the arrival and departure of trains; but privatization gave local managers greater autonomy to customize their station environments. The idea of introducing more melodic alarms was developed, and this quickly spread after passengers reacted positively.
Originally, the melodies used on Japan's railways sounded more like alarms. However, since the 1990s more attention has been paid to creating tunes which fulfil several criteria: clearly marking a train's arrival and departure, encouraging timely but unhurried boarding and disembarking, making passengers feel calm and relaxed, and standing out above announcements and other noise. Railway companies have established that the ideal length of a train melody, based on the typical dwell time of a train at a station, is seven seconds—so many tunes are designed to fit that length. Hundreds of different melodies—most written specifically for the railways—exist, and many stations or routes have their own characteristic tunes.
In Indonesia, most railways stations used full-hour segment of Westminster Quarters as its train melody. Upon arrival of a train, the chimes will be looped continuously until it departs from the station. Few stations are the exceptions, with the local folk songs acts as the train melody.
Train melodies have proved to be popular with many people in Japan. Train carriage and rolling stock manufacturer Nippon Sharyo received permission to use four different train melodies owned by East Japan Railway Company and West Japan Railway Company; and in August 2002 the company released an alarm clock that plays the same lilting melodies heard on Japan's high-speed railway lines. One tune is designed to invoke the relief a train passenger experiences after sitting down and moving with a departing train, and another is intended to reduce sleepiness, such as that experienced by morning commuters. By September 2002, Nippon Sharyo had sold out the first shipment of 2,000 units, priced at 5,800 yen. In view of the success of the product, the company launched a website dedicated to the clock, featuring the Shinkansen train's melodies. Other companies have manufactured keyrings and straps featuring the tunes.
There has also been criticism over the use of melodies on trains and at stations. These focus mainly on noise pollution and the tunes' contribution to it; but one author has also claimed that their use is symptomatic of a paternalistic, bureaucratic attitude towards passengers from the railway authorities, similar to the excessive use of announcements and warnings.
- ^ abcdefghiShiraishi, Takeshi (December 2, 2002). "Novelty clocks strike chord with hobbyists Rolling stock maker aims to raise brand recognition with bullet-train tunes". Nikkei Weekly.
- ^Budapest Metro jingle
- ^Brisson, Eric (2008). "Alkan - Le chemin de fer, étude, op.27". Pianopedia. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
- ^Weller, Wolfgang (1996). "The Piano Music of Charles-Valentin Alkan". Weller Music (in German). Retrieved 2008-01-11.
- ^Delaborde, Élie-Miriam (2000). Le Chemin de Fer, Op. 27 (score). London: Ludwig Masters Publications.
- ^Hitching, George (2006-08-24). "Charles-Valentin Alkan (1813-1888)". George Hitching personal page. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
- ^Murray, Christopher J. (2004). Encyclopedia of the Romantic Era, 1760-1850. London: Taylor and Francis. p. 12. ISBN .
- ^Eddie, William A. (2007). Charles Valentin Alkan: His Life And His Music. France: Ashgate Publishing. ISBN .
- ^"History of Japanese Railway (1949-1988)". Railway Technical Research Institute. 1997. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
- ^ abcdSpindle, Bill (1999-11-15). "Composer Takahito Sakurai Is The Master of 7-Second Songs". Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
- ^Widiarini (17 February 2017). "Yang Kadang Terlupa dari Stasiun Terbesar di Semarang". detikTravel (in Indonesian). Retrieved 16 June 2019.
- ^"Gadgets - Yamanote Train Melody Strap Set". Japan Trend Shop. 2008-07-24. Retrieved 2008-12-02.
TOKYO (AFP) - Mr Minoru Mukaiya is one of the world's most played musicians, with millions of people across Japan listening to his songs every day - but most of them don't even notice.
Mr Mukaiya is a composer of "Hassha Merodii" or "train departure melodies", short jingles that whisk commuters on their way at some of the world's busiest stations.
Almost no one would know his most famous track by name, a catchy electronic ditty broadcast for departures from platforms three and four at Tokyo's Shibuya station - the world's third busiest - but millions have it on their brains for hours after their commute.
Asked how many train jingles he has created, the 61-year-old former keyboard player with the jazz-fusion band Casiopea pauses. He has lost count and an assistant rushes over with a list.
"170? What? I wrote 170," he says, exploding with laughter. "That can't be right!"
"Hassha Merodii" is so common now in Japan that locals are unfazed when the sharp twang of an electronic keyboard or an organ's trill spills out of a loudspeaker but tourists are often thrilled.
Nevertheless, Mr Mukaiya's work has attracted a cult following.
He has more than 34,000 Twitter followers, performs the ditties at concerts to thousands of screaming fans and is now banned from playing at Ginza station - the epicentre of Tokyo swank - after a live show there sparked pandemonium.
Fans tell him the music is "good for their health, for their work, for walking. It warms them up" after a hard commute to the office, Mr Mukaiya told Agence France-Presse in an interview in his music room.
"I want them to be happy," he said.
"Hassha Merodii" started when train operators were looking for ways to make their stations stand out and came up with the idea of a catchy jingle.
The songs are capped at seven seconds - the "dwell time" train operators have to cram people into packed commuter trains and still, famously, run on time.
A spokesman for the JR East train company told AFP they were introduced "to prevent passengers from dashing onto the train".
But despite the short timeframe, Mr Mukaiya says that each ditty packs in a story.
In Japan's ancient capital Kyoto, "we have a deep respect for culture, so the song sounds more respectful of Japanese culture", he explained, sandwiched between musical instruments and computer screens.
The rapturous crescendo and rising pitch in Shibuya station's departure song, on the other hand, is a nod to the train's uphill journey to the next platform.
"The Toyoko line used to be up the stairs on a very high level. But now the Toyoko line has moved to the subway, and the journey from Shibuya to the next station is a very steep slope," he says.
"So I thought the departure song...needs to make it feel like the mountain train."
Other jingles nod to local history. The station at Takadanobaba, the home to popular anime series Astro Boy, pays homage to the cartoon with a jingle version of the show's theme tune.
And Osaka station features a soundbite of "I guess I really do love you", one of the region's most famous songs.
One of the distinguishing features of Mr Mukaiya's work is that the individual tunes at each station along a line can be combined to form a coherent song.
SCIENCE FICTION WORLD
The jingles have allowed Mr Mukaiya to combine his two passions, music and trains.
His interest in railways was first kindled as an eight-year-old when Japan's first-ever Shinkansen bullet train glided into Tokyo Station a week before the 1964 Olympics.
"I thought that this is a kind of science fiction world," he says.
Two decades later, he released one of the world's first train simulator video games for fellow enthusiasts, amassing a huge following and nabbing the attention of industry stalwarts like PlayStation.
The game was so realistic that train operators around the country started asking Mr Mukaiya to design something similar to teach their conductors and drivers.
He even designed a life-sized mock-up of a train conductor's compartment - complete with control panel - that occupies pride of place in his office.
Staring out to an imaginary platform, he rings a bell - confirming the train is clear to leave - and assumes his position at the wheel, watching the monitor above for the traffic light to turn green before taking off.
When the train pulls into the next station he walks back over to the carriage door, grinning. A makeshift platform projected from overhead, the number 10 appearing at his feet. He has lined up the train doors with the platform exit perfectly.
Japan’s Train Station Jingles
Our kids have been studying various Asian countries in home school this month, and the most recent country is our beloved Japan. Great Big Story (RIP) has a bunch of excellent and entertaining videos on Japanese culture, but this video about composer behind the unique train jingles that ring throughout every train station in Japan is particularly delightful.
Minoru Mukaiya used to be the keyboardist in the jazz fusion group Casiopea. After the band went on hiatus in 2006, he followed his fascination with trains to create the company Ongakukan, which builds professional train simulators. He then began composing the little melodies that play in Japan’s transit system to alert travelers of their arrival. To date, Mukaiya has composed 200 songs for over 110 stations. (My favorite detail from the video: All of the melodies that play along Tokyo’s Tozai Line are parts of the same song.)
If you want to hear more of these station melodies, check out this YouTube video and this Reddit thread. (Or you can buy a CDor two from Amazon Japan.)
Read more about Japan and Minoru Mukaiya.
If you enjoy reading Opus and want to support my writing, become a subscriber for $5/month or $50/year.Subscribe Today
Related EntriesSours: https://opuszine.us/posts/japans-train-station-jingles
Super Bell"Z (read "Super Bellz") is a group known for its "DJ Train Conductor" songs in which they lay sounds of trains, station fuss, etc., and voice recorded to resemble train announcements over hip hop beats. They were under contract with Toshiba-EMI, but in 2005 they went independent.
Their first single, "MOTER MAN (Akihabara ~ Minami-Urawa)", was such a hit that it was followed up with a whole "MOTO(e)R MAN" series. Since 2003 they have performed live at Seibu Railway's annual "Seibu Train Festa" event, for which they also created a mock sentai group called "Leo Rangers" whose costumes are designed to look like trains in Seibu's lineup.
Born 1972-05-22 in Obihiro, Hokkaidō. He creates the DJ Train Conductor tracks and does additional vocals. His character in Leo Rangers is modeled after the Seibu 10000 series.
Born December, 1972 in Hokkaidō. Sings chorus and plays keyboard. His character in Leo Rangers is modeled after the Seibu 20000 series.
- Nakajima Hiroki aka "Nakaji"
Born 1975-06-09 in Saitama Prefecture. Plays electric guitar. His character in Leo Rangers is modeled after the Seibu 3000 series.
- 1999-12-08 debuts with Moter Man (Akihabara~Minami Urawa)
- 2000 wins 33rd USEN Award for Best New Artists for MOTER MAN (Akihabara~Minami Urawa)
- 2005 leaves Toshiba-EMI to go independent
Many of their albums have the combined name of Motor Man and Moter Man, which is written with an 'e' inside an 'o.' They are therefore written here as "MOTO(e)R MAN."
- MOTER MAN (Akihabara~Minami Urawa) (1999-12-08) - first single
- 老・ラッパー [Old Rapper] (2000-09-13)
- MOTO(e)R MAN Vol.3 Sendai & Keihin Kyūkō (2001-02-21)
- Formula Man (2001-08-29)
- MOTO(e)R MAN Chuo-sen/Shinkansen Hikari (2002-01-30)
- MOTO(e)R MAN Enoden & Rikuu East Line (2003-06-25 CCCD)
- 鉄道戦隊 レオ☆レンジャー [Railroad Sentai Leo Rangers] (2003-12-17 CCCD)
- かいじ101号 [Kaiji No. 101] (2004-09-29 CCCD)
- MOTO(e)R MAN (2000-02-23)
- MOTO(e)R MAN Vol.2 (2000-07-19)
- スーパーベルズファン [SUPER BELL"Z Fan] (2000-10-25) - the CD booklet is a parody of the Japanese magazine Japan Railfan Magazine
- MOTER MAN Yamanote Line "Loop Complete!" (2002-03-27)
- MOTO(e)R MAN Hayate&Saikyo Line WATER FRONT (2002-11-30)
- MOTO(e)R MANでGO! [Let's Go by MOTO(e)R MAN!] (2004-06-23 CCCD) - The title song "MOTO(e)R MANでGO!" was used as the theme song of the Taito game Let's Go by Train!FINAL.
- Very Best Of MOTO(e)R MAN (2005-06-15 CCCD) - includes three new songs
- アイアンテクノ(仮) [Iron Techno (Unofficial)] (2002-06-26). The "(Unofficial)" is part of the title; it is not unofficial.
- 実写版! 鉄道戦隊レオ☆レンジャー [On the Spot! Railroad Sentai Leo Rangers] (2004-03-31)
Song japan train
.JAPAN✦COOL! - Japan Train Station Music! So Cool and Happy!
You will also be interested:
- Geico funny commercials
- 5960x reviews
- Tf2 creators.tf servers
- Henry street savannah ga
- Mfr mod
- Z590 micro atx
- Exotic pendant lights
- Cdl hazmat practice
- Animated capes minecraft
- Taemin smile