Japanese Children’s Songs on Stamps

When I started research for this article, I was hopeful to find a lot of examples of children’s songs on stamps. I could find numerous childhood activities: games, toys, holidays, learning, entering adulthood – everything is there. I even found a niche topic that I would like to explore in the future – childhood looked at with nostalgia: how children in days of yore were having fun (with the unclear implication whether nowadays children have the same amount of fun). However, I couldn’t find many examples of children’s songs on stamps.

The reason I researched this is because I want to talk today about one of my all-time favorite series of stamps. Nothing fancy. It’s a series of stamps from Japan called “Japanese Song Series” (in Japanese: 日本の歌シリーズ) and which was issued between 1979 and 1981. The distance in time alone makes the stamps already “vintage” to some extent, but the thing that really attracted my attention was their attentive, almost peaceful design and the variety of songs described.

Now if you don’t have any Japanese tune you can’t get out of your head, maybe you want to click on the Youtube link below:

Of course you can skip that and directly go to the topic of stamps (since everyone knows that children’s songs are infectious and that’s part of their scam). So the series of stamps I am talking about includes as much as 18 stamps – issued in pairs of 2. Each stamp includes the chorus of the song in musical notation and text. That makes the stamps extra lovely.

Pictured above: 荒城の月 – Koujou no Tsuki (“Moon over Ruined Castle“) and
タやけこやけ – Yuuyake Koyake (“Afterglow“).

Pictured above: もみじ – Momiji (“The Maple“) and 故郷 – Furusato (“Home“).

Pictured above: ふゆげした – Fuyugeshita (“Winter Landscape“) and
富士山 – Fujisan (“Mt. Fuji“).

Pictured above: さくらさくら – Sakura Sakura (“Cherry Cherry“) and 春の小川 – Haru no Kogawa (“The Rivulets of Spring“).

Pictured above: うみ – Umi (“The Sea“) and おぼろ月夜 – Oborogetsuyo (“The Veiled Moonlight“).

Pictured above: 日のまる – Hi no maru (“The Rising Sun“) and 夏の思い出 – Natsu no Omoide (“Summer Memories“).

Pictured above: 浜辺の歌 – Hamabe no Uta (“The Song of the Shore“) and 赤とんぼ – Akatonbo (“The Red Dragonfly“).

Pictured above: 子守唄 - Komori Uta (“The Lullaby“) and 椰子の実 – Yashi no Mi (“The Coconut“).

Pictured above: 春が来た – Haru ga Kita (“Spring Has Come“) and 花- Hana (“The Flower“).

Stamps featured in post: 18; Period: modern (1979-1981); Pricing: low; Availability: rather available, a full set is harder to assemble.






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