TURNING JAPANESE – 2008 – Eddy McManus is turning Japanese in this favorite of his from his youth.
The Vapors are an English new wave and power pop band that initially existed between 1978 and 1982. They had a top ten hit with the song “Turning Japanese” in 1980, which reached No. 3 in the UK Singles Chart, and No. 36 in the US Billboard Hot 100. The lyric consists mainly of the singer talking about pictures of his love. It prominently features an Oriental riff played on guitar.
Songwriter David Fenton explains: “Turning Japanese is all the clichés about angst and youth and turning into something you didn’t expect to.”
The band knew they had a success with “Turning Japanese”, so much so that they waited until their second single before releasing it, fearing that if they released it as their first, they would become “one-hit wonders”. They never matched its success.
The song enjoyed some sales in Japan after its great success in Australia, where it spent two weeks at No. 1 during June 1980