Just One More Kiss ― Sakurai Atsushi

26/October/2023 in Belgrade

2 days ago at late night

I got to know Sakurai Atsushi passed away

He is a Japanese singer

He was not a kind of musician that every single Japanese knows

He was slightly a lesser known person, despite his +35-year long career

But once he passed away, many fellow musicians released a comment & it became almost nationwide news

I can not say, I was "a big fan" of Sakurai

But apart from this word of mine,
if I look at "the fact",
if I look at what I did,
I've actually listened to his songs since 2007, for more than 15 years

So probably I was, at least, a fan of him

When knowing his passing,
I was surely shocked,
I was surely feeling like "I don't want to believe"

And thinking about a couple of things.....


This is actually 2nd time that
I got to know some "important person" in my life passing away while staying in Serbia

July, last year
8th July 2022, I was in Belgrade

And I got to know Abe Shinzo/Japan's ex-prime minister was shot dead

As some of you would know,
I was almost devastated by this news at that time

Then, this time,
one Japanese artist passed away, who I'd listened to for +15 years

I had to notice that
this time I was not as upset as last year,
which felt a bit strange

Because Abe is a politician and Sakurai is, basically, a person in the entertainment industry

Over the past 15 years, I heard his voice very often

I came across Sakurai's voice & lyrics/thoughts far far far more often than Abe's voice & thoughts

But somehow, my sadness this time was not as acute as the one from Abe's death

Now, I'm not really sure why
Probably I need more time to think about it

Perhaps I have too many memories related to Sakurai's music and unable to sort it out yet


The reason why I started to listen to his music was
one small flyer I got in 2007 at the concert venue in Nagoya/Japan's 3rd city

I traveled to this city from Tokyo in order to see my favourite singer's concert who I've liked for 20 years

After the concert, a staff gave me a small ad flyer about Sakurai's new song,
and because of this, I decided to listen to his music

This travel from Tokyo to Nagoya was my first ever solo-trip

First time I booked a hotel by myself
First time I stayed in a hotel alone
First time I experienced "travel" alone

In a sense, without that 1 day-trip,
perhaps I wouldn't have got into traveling

And I wouldn't have been abroad
And I wouldn't have met so many people
And my life was not as exciting as it is now

And perhaps I'm not in Serbia now


Subconsciously or consciously
I'm always afraid of getting a message/phone call from my family member

I always feel that
one day they would tell me some extremely bad news

I'm far away from them. And big time gap exists

So, if "unfortunate things" happen,
it must come to me via a messaging app

For example,
in the morning, in the bed
I want to check the time

Open the smartphone and, perhaps it would be when I see a message from one of my parents, telling some devastating news about my family

Apparently I must not be ready then

What I want is just checking the time

But I 'm forced to know something I don't want to know

For a long time I've been subconsciously afraid of that this kind of thing would happen in real while I'm abroad

Just like I was forced to know Abe's death last year
Just like I was forced to know Sakurai's death 2 days ago

Since 2 days ago
I haven't been able to listen to Sakurai's songs

I'm supposed not "a big fan" of him
I'm supposed not to be emotionally attached with him

But still,
his music was always there during my life journey, since 2007

But still,
his voice was giving various colours & emotions to my daily life, for +15 years

"A person that produced all these colours & emotions no longer exist in this world"

Probably I'm scared of facing this fact by playing his music
Probably I'm scared of accepting this fact by listening to his voice
& Probably I'm scared this reality becomes real inside me

Arigatou, Sakurai San