Ayu is well-known for reinventing herself and revamping her image, but there is one thing that has not changed throughout her career: the writing of her lyrics. Since her very first single to her latest release, Ayu always writes the lyrics for her songs. They range from the simple to the profound, from the straightforward to the heartfelt. Even when she draws on personal experience, her lyrics are easily relatable and often moving.
It's always so simple I could cry, but I want to smile.
I want your love.
itsu datte naku kurai kantan da kedo waratte itai anata no ai ga hoshii yo
What I’ve always found remarkable about Ayu’s songs is their emotional effect. Since I don’t know Japanese, I have to rely on translations to understand the words. Sometimes, though, in her most emotional songs, the effect comes across even without a translation.
Even my last words don't reach you
I'm made to realize the coldness of the parting
I wish I could have heard from you
That you never regretted the days we had spent together
Only once, even if it had been a lie
Sayonara ne saigo no kotoba sae todokanai
Wakare no tsumetasa o
Iyatte hodo omoishirasareru
Kikasete hoshikatta uso de kamawanai kara
Sugoshita ano hi o kuyandari shitenaindatte
Tatta ichido de iikara
Memorial address (take 2 version)
The evolution of Ayu’s music has naturally resulted in an improvement in her lyric writing. While her early songs have fairly straightforward lyrics, they have gotten deeper over time. Of course, there are still songs with simple lyrics (like “Curtain call”), but Ayu’s experience with writing lyrics leads me to believe it’s intentional. Ayu knows when to use words for effect, and when not to use them.
I’ve highlighted many of my favorite lyrics across this site, but here are a selection of a few other favorites. This is an incomplete list; I’m sure I’ll add to it in the future.