Part of what makes Yagami Toll!!
Translation: Lola

-First album [Louisiana] released in March 1973.
-Seventh single [Funky Monkey Baby] released in June 1973.
-Second album [Funky Monkey Baby] released in July 1973.
-Third album [Carol First] released in July 1974.
-Live album [Moetsukiru Carol's Last Live! 1975-4-13] released in May 1975. (1)

How did you first come to hear of them?
From my big brother. At first I was surprised that they were a Japanese rock band. When my brother was listening to them I thought, 'What's this?! It's amazing!!'. Until then my big brother mostly listened to Western music while my older sister listened to GS (2). I thought GS bands were so cool when I was in grade school but, once I entered the higher grades of elementary school until I was a junior high student I thought among Japanese rock bands, CAROL was the best! Around the time of [Funky Monkey Baby], when I was about eleven, that was basically Carol's only major hit. But no matter how many hundreds of times I listened, I never got tired of it. This is actually the record that my big brother bought back then and that I kept as a keepsake.
I began playing the drums at fifteen and the first cover song I played was 'Funky Monkey Baby'. I played it at an arts festival in junior high. So, it really had a great influence on me.

What are your memories or some stories associated with CAROL?
They were only active for about two and a half years, they made their debut at the end of '72 and then disbanded in April of '75. I never actually got to see them perform live. But I wanted to see them when they came to Takasaki during their '74 tour. Anyway, I did get to see Yazawa Eikichi-san live though when he went solo after. My older sister brought me to the show since I was still in junior high.
What surprised me was, even though they broke up after the live at Hibiya Yaon on April 13th of '75 they released a live record of that last show in May, barely a month after. Even though they said it was their last live, I think it's amazing they released it on a record a month later.
There was also some controversy back in the 70s within the Japanese rock scene about whether or not to sing in English or in Japanese. But you know, CAROL mixed both English and Japanese in their songs. And because they were able to sell it, the dispute became moot.
In those days rock albums didn't really sell well. But theirs sold something like 100 000 copies. 100 000 copies for a rock band in those days was really something of a miracle you know.
CAROL even made an appearance for the Paris Collection of Yamamoto-Kansai-san (3). They performed live at his fashion show.
Then about four years ago, in 2003, I even got the guitarist to sign something for me. And he signed "CAROL" so perfectly!!

Notes: (1) 'Moetsukiru' translates as 'burn out'. Though given the context the album title would translate as 'Burning it up! Carol's Last Live!'
(2) GS is the abbreviation for the term Group Sounds. It applied to a genre of Japanese rock music that drew its inspiration from The Beatles.
(3) Yamamoto Kansai is a Japanese contemporary designer and event producer. He designed costumes for David Bowie during his Ziggy Stardust tour among others.