Saturday, April 23, 2011

Japanese Childrens songs

These 3 short clips of traditional Japanese children's songs are from the Warabekan, a toy and childrens song museum in Tottori City.

The childrens song section of the museum I found particularly interesting and thought the way they displayed these songs were good.

Unfortunately I have no information about these particular songs, so if any readers know what they are aor anything about them please post a comment.


  1. The first and third songs are same. Tha name of the song is "Antagata Dokosa". We sing this song when we play bouncing ball.
    Second one is "Kagome Kagome". Several children surround one child in the middle who close his or her eyes, and go around while singing this song. When the song is finished, the child in the middle guesses who is behind.

    Hidesada Shimazaki

  2. Many thanks Hidesada
    Ive replaced the 3rd video with the correct one now.

  3. Jake -
    wonderful of you to branch out past the more standard pic's to include architecture and NOW the MUSIC of Japan. If your ever uncover the music (in its' Western form) please post or pass on. You may not recall that his architect has 2 music-professional children, who now teach children music.
    Best, Paul

  4. The second song - "Kagome, kagome" - is of ambiguous meaning of which much hay has been made in Japan. There are many books on the possible meanings of the song, covering everything from ancient childbirth practices to the Hebrew Ark of the Covenant being secretly buried under Mt. Tsurugi in Tokushima. This Wikipedia page has a number of possible translations into English:

    These children's songs seem strange even to modern Japanese. This is probably because the overall conservatism of children's games and folklore (in terms of not changing much over time) means that the songs are probably very old.

  5. As DCL mentioned, various interpretations are possible for these songs. Children sing these songs (I have never heard of the 3rd song) without knowing the meaning.

    Unfortunately, these songs have been disappering because children doesn't play outside these days and play only computer games.