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The band was originally formed in 1955 at the end of the first jazz boom in Japan under the name The Cuban Cats. Signed to Watanabe Productions, their performances mixed music and comedic bits, in the spirit of Frankie Sakai and the City Slickers, and they soon changed their name to the Crazy Cats. At the end of the 1950s, the main members were Hana, Tani, Ueki, Inuzuka, Yasuda, and Ishibashi. Sakurai joined in 1960, and Ishibashi left in 1971.The group became nationally famous after appearing on the television show “Otona No Manga” starting in 1959. Beginning in 1961, they co-starred on the variety show “Soap Bubble Holiday” (“Shabondama Horidē”), performing in skits written by Yukio Aoshima, who later became governor of Tokyo. Their 1961 song, “Sudara-Bushi,” sung by Ueki, was a major hit and led to seven consecutive appearances on NHK’s Kohaku Utagassen. Their popularity also led to a series of films produced at the Toho Studios, the most famous of which was the Musekinin Otoko or Irresponsible Man. The series of films featured Ueki as a salaryman attempting to advance up the corporate ladder.