Starting your day with a full Tank

Singapore Bill: The song “TANK!” is best known as the theme song to the Japanese anime (cartoon series) “Cowboy Bebop”. It’s a very popular show and this driving tune is impossible to ignore. That’s why I use it as my ringtone. These musicians are the original players.


  1. What is it about drummers? as the song went on I started paying attention to how the musicians were dressed. The tie wearing flautist, the button down sax player, the rocking guitarist, but both the drummers were in the international uniform of drummers, extremely casual with a heaping helping of don’t give a fuck. Great song, great performance, and if they’re all in lock down at home, their neighbors must hate them.

  2. Yoko Kanno’s music for Cowboy Bebop is great. Who’d’ve thought to score a cartoon about space cowboy bounty hunters with jazz?

  3. You mean the story wasn’t built around Jazz from the start? 🙂

    Great series, and yeah, I’m missing the original intro. Great modern version though.

  4. There was certainly a musical theme running through it. The episodes were called “sessions” and all named for songs or something like one.

    I didn’t realize until the second time through the US run that they skipped an episode originally. “Cowboy Funk” was delayed until the next year. These originally ran in the fall of 2001, and this episode involved a terrorist bombing buildings.

  5. clell65619: A couple of the horn players are pretty casual as well, with one in a t-shirt and one in a hoodie. But nobody can slob it up like a drummer. As for the neighbours, I thought the same thing. Having spent three years living in Japanese apartments, the walls are thin. So thin.

    larK: Yes, I do miss that part, I think it really does add to the overall je ne sais quoi. For that reason, I thought of sending CIDU Bill a link to this concert version that has that in it. But the lockdown version does have its own appeal too.

    All y’all: I think the show does owe a huge amount of its success to the music. A good number of other anime have more syrupy, poppy music in them and, while that might still sell, it sets the tone. The jazzy stuff in Cowboy Bebop has always made it feel a little disreputable and connected it with detective B-movies of the 50s and early 60s.

    I received my Blu-ray disc of the complete series a few days ago but haven’t had a chance to crack it open yet. It’d been on my wishlist for a while and, for no apparent reasons, the price dropped by about 35%. And since my birthday is coming up, it was a justifiable purchase. 🙂

  6. They have the series at the public library. I might get that now that they’re beginning to reopen (curbside at this point).

  7. You always have to let your drummer dress as he wants. He’s the only member of the band who has a van.

  8. Coworkers of mine are in a blues band. One complains to me from time to time about his drummer, but he had been booking the gigs.

    Also, music is a major element in the series Space Dandy, which is created by the same guy behind Cowboy Bebop. Numerous composers and performers submitted songs, all in a variety of styles differing from episode to episode.

    And then there’s the series Kids On The Slope, which is about a Japanese jazz band’s struggles in the mid 20th Century. It just so happens to have been another collaboration between Watanabe and Yoko Kanno. They do get around…

  9. I was watching a tribute band the other night, wondering the same thing. Buttoned shirts and even vests on all the band members except the T-shirt clad drummer. Then I realized he’s the only one who works up a sweat playing his instrument.

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