Girl Talk/The Speed Star

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"Girl Talk / The Speed Star"
Single by Namie Amuro
from the album Queen of Hip-Pop
Released October 14, 2004
Format CD Single, CD&DVD
Recorded Rojam Studio
Genre R&B
Length
Label Avex Trax
Producer(s) T.Kura, Akira
Namie Amuro singles chronology
"All for You"
(2004)
"Girl Talk / The Speed Star"
(2004)
"Want Me, Want Me"
(2005)
"Girl Talk / The Speed Star"
The CD and DVD version of the single.

"Girl Talk / The Speed Star" is Namie Amuro's 27th solo single under the Avex Trax label. It was released on CD and CD&DVD October 14, 2004. For three days the single placed #1 on the Oricon charts. It was the first time any of her singles since 1998's "I Have Never Seen" had reached the top spot.

Overview[edit]

"Girl Talk" and "The Speed Star" were unveiled during a private fan club tour in September 2004. Amuro released both songs as a double a-side single in October and it was an instant success.

Written by the husband and wife duo, T.Kura and Michico, "Girl Talk" is a midtempo R&B number similar to the kind of R&B that was being released in the U.S. during the late 90s, and not unlike Amuro's previous work with producer Dallas Austin. "The Speed Star", written by Akira and Monk, was a much harder uptempo R&B dance number. A guitar riff is played throughout the song giving it a quality similar to that of En Vogue's 1992 hit, "Free Your Mind."

In May 2005, Amuro announced the upcoming release of her sixth studio album, Queen of Hip-Pop (2005). Initial press releases of the album did not name "The Speed Star" as one of the songs to be featured on the album.

Commercial endorsement[edit]

Both "Girl Talk" and "The Speed Star" were used as the commercial songs for cosmetic company Lucido-L's new fall line. Amuro, a spokesmodel for the company since 2003, has appeared in two commercials for the campaign.

The first commercial featured "Girl Talk" as background music, and had Amuro's hair stroked by off-screen strangers. The image is supposed to convey Lucido-L's new hair dye product will make your hair radiant and soft. At the end of the video a young Eurasian boy is shown smiling at Amuro after feeling her hair.

The second commercial features "The Speed Star", and begins with a full screen shot of Amuro's face before zooming out and fading into full color. Amuro appears emotionless and the camera spans around her as she sprays her hair using Lucido-L's new line of hair spray.

Music videos[edit]

The music video for "The Speed Star" debuted as an MTV Japan exclusive in late September. Directed by Ugichin, the video features Amuro and five dancers performing in front of a giant car motor. As they dance, runners try to get pass Amuro before being blown back by the fan of the motor. The video switches between this scene and two others. Another scene has Amuro and her dancers performing in pink boxes. The camera spans back and forth between each dancer as they freestyle. The last scene of the video involves Amuro pole dancing alone. This scene was presented in black and white with high contrast between the tones.

A video for "Girl Talk" was filmed shortly after the video for "The Speed Star", but it does not appear on the retailed CD&DVD single. It was released to all music video networks in early October. The clip was directed by Masashi Muto and was filmed in a Spanish mansion. The video is simple, depicting Amuro in a variety of rooms. The main scene of the video has Amuro in a pink cowboy hat dancing with two female dancers. Another scene has her singing on top of a bed. Originally the director wanted Amuro to roll around on it, but she complained that she was too embarrassed to do it. A third scene had Amuro sitting in a living room with her two dancers talking on a coach in the background.

Both videos were choreographed by Chiharu and Etsu of TRF. Chiharu and Etsu have choreographed many of Amuro's past singles including "I Have Never Seen" (1998) and "Love 2000" (2000). They've also choreographed videos for Ayumi Hamasaki.

Track listing[edit]

CD only format[edit]

  1. "Girl Talk" (T.Kura, Michico) – 4:24
  2. "The Speed Star" (Akira, Monk) – 4:19
  3. "Girl Talk (Instrumental)" (T.Kura, Michico) – 4:24
  4. "The Speed Star (Instrumental)" (Monk) – 4:17

CD and DVD[edit]

CD portion[edit]

  1. "Girl Talk" (T.Kura, Michico) – 4:24
  2. "The Speed Star" (Akira, Monk) – 4:19
  3. "Girl Talk (Instrumental)" (T.Kura, Michico) – 4:24
  4. "The Speed Star (Instrumental)" (Monk) – 4:17

DVD portion[edit]

  1. "The Speed Star (Music video)" – 4:31

Personnel[edit]

  • Namie Amuro – vocals, background vocals
  • Michico – background vocals
  • T.Kura – multiple instruments
  • Monk – multiple instruments
  • Chiharu – Choreographer
  • Etsu – Choreographer
  • Keita – Dancer
  • Mayumi – Dancer
  • Rika – Dancer
  • Ryo – Dancer
  • Shige – Dancer

Production[edit]

  • Producers – T.Kura, Akira
  • Vocal Production – Michico, Akira
  • Mixing – T.Kura, Junya Endo
  • Music Video Director – Masashi Muto, Ugichin

TV performances[edit]

  • Girl Talk
    • October 8, 2004 – Music Station Special
    • October 15, 2004 – Music Fighter
    • October 23, 2004 – Pop Jam
    • October 23, 2004 – CDTV
    • November 1, 2004 – Hey! Hey! Hey!
    • December 24, 2004 – Music Station X'mas Special Super Live 2004
    • February 3, 2005 – MTV Asia Aid
    • June 5, 2006 – SMAPXSMAP
  • The Speed Star
    • October 21, 2004 – Utaban
    • October 23, 2004 – Pop Jam
    • December 15, 2004 – Best Artist 30

Charts[edit]

Oricon Sales Chart (Japan)

Release Chart Peak Position First Week Sales Sales Total Chart Run
October 14, 2004 Oricon Daily Singles Chart 1
Oricon Weekly Singles Chart 2 41,717 106,327 14 weeks

Oricon Sales Chart (Japan)

Release Chart Position Sales Total
October 14, 2004 Oricon 2004 Year-End Chart 97 106,327

RIAJ certification[edit]

"Girl Talk / The Speed Star" has been certified gold for shipments of over 100,000 by the Recording Industry Association of Japan.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Recording Industry Association of Japan". Retrieved May 3, 2006.