This cute song is based on the maneki neko (まね)(ねこ) found in stores throughout Japan. Store owners place these cat statues out to welcome customers (and encourage buying). If you are a Makoto+ Shogun or Lifetime member, you can read an intermediate story about the まねねこ by clicking here. (Not yet a member, click here to learn more!)

This new Wednesday Campanella song is written from the cat's perspective.


Introduction

There are a few useful expressions and idioms in the song. It opens with 千客万来(せんきゃくばんらい) which is used to show many customers coming and going. That is, business is good.

商売繁盛(しょうばいはんじょう) is similar expression. It likewise means a thriving business.

But the best idiom in the song is – hands down (kind of pun intended) – (ねこ)()()りたい which means, "(I'm so busy) I want a cat to lend me a hand."

If you aren't familiar with Wednesday Campanella (水曜日(すいようび)のカンパネラ), you can read about them on Wikipedia here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wednesday_Campanella

A customer of ours introduced us to them a few years back and we've taken a liking to the music. It's weird—very weird—but fun.

The lyrics rarely make much sense, but the songs tend to be based on some topic of Japanese culture. This song is Maneki Neko, the Beckoning Cat, for example. There are other songs based on traditional Japanese folktales such as Momotaro and Ikkyuusan.

The lead singer recently changed from a lady named コムアイ (known as KOM_I in English) to 詩羽(うたは) (Utaha). Utaha has carried on the style and substance well, I think.

This song, 『(まね)(ねこ)』Maneki Neko, was just released on February 25th, 2022. We hope you both enjoy the song and learn a little from it.

While this lesson is free, Makoto+ and Patreon supporters have access to bonus content including a downloadable PDF and sound files. If you are a member, please click here for the bonus content.

Please consider supporting us by becoming a member or patron!


Video of the Song

Warning: The more you listen to it, the more addicting the weirdness becomes...


Sound File of the Lyrics

Here is a recording of all the lyrics spoken with pauses between lines. See below for breakdowns of every line with individual sound files.


Lyrics in Japanese with Furigana

Japanese Only Lyrics with Furigana



Line-by-Line with Vocabulary and Translation

Please note, in many cases, due to the poetic nature of songs, other translations are possible.

千客万来(せんきゃくばんらい) 千客万来(せんきゃくばんらい)

Business is booming

Vocabulary & Notes


右手(みぎて)あげりゃ 商売繁盛(しょうばいはんじょう)

When I raise my right hand, business prospers

Vocabulary & Notes


(びょう)(きゃく)()んでしまうこの肉球(にくきゅう)

By this paw, customers are called in a second.

Vocabulary & Notes


(こころ)をつかんでしまう(しろ)いボディ

)

(My) white body grabs the (customer's) hearts

Vocabulary & Notes


おかげで(みせ)連日(れんじつ)大繁盛(だいはんじょう)

Thanks to me, the store is thriving day after day.

Vocabulary & Notes


(いそが)しい(ねこ)()()りたいぐらい

I'm so busy I even want the help of a cat.

Vocabulary & Notes


姿(すがた)(ねこ)

(My) appearance, a cat

Vocabulary & Notes


中身(なかみ)はエリート経営(けいえい)コンサル

(But) my true self, an elite management consultant

Vocabulary & Notes


副業(ふくぎょう) (ねこ)

My side job, a cat

Vocabulary & Notes


本職(ほんしょく)(ほう)が 経営(けいえい)コンサル

As for (my) day job, it is management consulting

Vocabulary & Notes


No 違法(いほう)客引(きゃくひ)

No illegal pestering people to buy aggressively

Vocabulary & Notes


合法(ごうほう)手招(てまね)

(only) legitimate beckoning

Vocabulary & Notes


(いま)はまだ (さん)(りゅう)のこの(みせ)

Right now, this store is still third rate

Vocabulary & Notes


もっと(きゃく)()やすのだ

(We) need more customers.

Vocabulary & Notes


この右手上(みぎてあ)げた刹那(せつな)

The moment (I) raise this right hand (paw)

Vocabulary & Notes


(きゃく)(まね)(まね)(まね)(まね)()れるのだ (われ)

It is I who beckons and beckons customers to come in

Vocabulary & Notes


(ふく)(まね)(まね)(まね)(まね)()れるのだ さらに

It is I who invites fortune to enter. In addition…

Vocabulary & Notes


(やく)(はら)(はら)(はら)(はら)い のけるのだ (われ)

It is I who exorcises misfortune out of the way

Vocabulary & Notes


(きゃく)(まね)(まね)(まね)(まね)()れるのだ (われ)のこの肉球(にくきゅう)

It is I who beckons and beckons customers to come in with this, my paw

Vocabulary & Notes


ただの普通(ふつう)(ねこ)だったあの(ころ)

Back then, when I was just an ordinary cat.

Vocabulary & Notes


(みな)のんびり()ままに()らしてた)

We were all just taking it easy, living life as we pleased.

Vocabulary & Notes


ある()(てん)からの啓示(けいじ)()けた(われ)

One day, I received a revelation from heaven

Vocabulary & Notes


肉球(にくきゅう)偉大(いだい)力宿(ちからやど)

A great power came to reside within (my) paw.

Vocabulary & Notes


姿(すがた)(ねこ))

(My) appearance, a cat

Vocabulary & Notes


中身(なかみ)はエリート経営(けいえい)コンサル)

(But) my true self, an elite management consultant

Vocabulary & Notes


副業(ふくぎょう) (ねこ)

My side job, a cat

Vocabulary & Notes


本職(ほんしょく)(ほう)が 経営(けいえい)コンサル

(My) day job is management consulting

Vocabulary & Notes


No 違法(いほう)客引(きゃくひ)

No illegal pestering people to buy aggressively

Vocabulary & Notes


合法(ごうほう)手招(てまね)

(only) legitimate beckoning

Vocabulary & Notes


いつか一流(いちりゅう)になるこの(みせ)

Someday this place will be first class.

Vocabulary & Notes


もっと(きゃく)()やすのだ

(I will) increase customers more.

Vocabulary & Notes


この右手上(みぎてあ)げた刹那(せつな)

The moment (I) raise this right hand (paw)

Vocabulary & Notes


(きゃく)(まね)(まね)(まね)(まね)()れるのだ (われ)

It is I who beckons and beckons customers to come in

Vocabulary & Notes


(ふく)(まね)(まね)(まね)(まね)()れるのだ さらに

It is I who invites fortune to enter. In addition…

Vocabulary & Notes


(やく)(はら)(はら)(はら)(はら)い のけるのだ (われ)

It is I who exorcises misfortune out of the way

Vocabulary & Notes


(きゃく)(まね)(まね)(まね)(まね)()れるのだ (われ)のこの肉球(にくきゅう)

)

It is I who beckons and beckons customers to come in with this, my paw

Vocabulary & Notes


千客万来(せんきゃくばんらい) 千客万来(せんきゃくばんらい)

Business is booming

Vocabulary & Notes


右手(みぎて)あげりゃ 商売繁盛(しょうばいはんじょう)

When I raise my right hand, business prospers

Vocabulary & Notes

 

千客万来(せんきゃくばんらい) 千客万来(せんきゃくばんらい)

Business is booming

Vocabulary & Notes


右手(みぎて)あげりゃ 商売繁盛(しょうばいはんじょう)

When I raise my right hand, business prospers

Vocabulary & Notes


(びょう)(きゃく)()んでしまうこの肉球(にくきゅう))

By this paw, customers are called in a second.

Vocabulary & Notes


(こころ)をつかんでしまう(しろ)いボディ

)

(My) white body grabs the (customer's) hearts

Vocabulary & Notes


おかげで(みせ)連日(れんじつ)大繁盛(だいはんじょう)

Thanks to me, the store is thriving day after day.

Vocabulary & Notes


(いそが)しい(ねこ)()()りたいぐらい

I'm so busy I even want the help of a cat.

Vocabulary & Notes




For upper beginners and above.

Want to improve your reading, vocabular, grammar, and listening skills by reading about yokai such as oni or kappas? We have the digital bundle for you.

Living in shadows and the in between worlds of dreams and reality, yokai thrive in Japanese imagination. Yokai are monsters, ghosts, unnatural beings, and even sentient household items. Yokai can be harmless and amusing, or they can be terrifying.

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