The Yomiuri Shimbun online has reported that Japanese lyricist Akira Itou passed away on May 15, 2021 due to acute renal failure. He was 80 yeats old at the time of his passing. Itou was most well-known around the world as the writer of “Lum’s Love Song,” the first opening theme to Urusei Yatsura, and had written over 1,000 anime songs, commercial jingles, and even J-pop tracks.
Itou was born on August 12, 1940, in Chiba prefecture. Under the mentorship of the late Torirou Miki, who eventually wrote the theme songs to Kimba the White Lion and Tetsujin 28-go (known as Gigantor in the west), Itou was given the opportunity to write some of the most influential jingles in Japanese commercials as well as theme songs of some of the most popular anime of the 20th century. The anime themes he wrote included the second ending theme of Tetsujin 28-go, the ending theme for the original Cutie Honey anime, the aforementioned “Lum’s Love Song,” as well as many more.