What is "Zunpa"?

I have just uploaded a video of “Zunpa Ondo” with Japanese lyrics and my rough English translation.


I wished to translate this song into English last year, but it took me one year to start it…..and when I actually started this afternoon, it took me only two hours to complete this video.


It reminded me of a saying of “It’s all in the first step.”

Then, what is Zunpa?

I found many people talking about “what is Zunpa?” but nobody knows the meaning of Zunpa.  One of the websites indicated
that this song was made in 1973 (lyrics written by Koji Yume) in order for more young people to join in the Bon Dance.


And then, again, what is the meaning of Zunpa?

I don’t know if it’s correct…but after repeating “Zunpa”…. many, many times, I was able to guess Zunpa must be a type of new dance music like Zunba, Samba, or Rumba!

Because it was a brand-new type of Bon Dance song in those days, the word was also made “new” and it was used
as it was!


So my answer is…..Zunpa is Zunpa and I discovered it maybe came from the abbreviation of “Japanese Rumba.”

If you suspect this answer, please try to say “Japanese Rumba” faster over 10 times.   “Japanese Rumba” sounds like “…zunpa.”


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Comments: 2
  • #1

    Colleen (Monday, 22 July 2013 04:47)

    Hi again Rev. Kosen! Thank you for this explanation! I always wonder what the various dances/songs mean. I'm so nosy that way *LOL* I again landed on your website when I searched for "Gokigen", that new bon dance. It's such a cheerful song, I'm glad they added it. Thank you also for finding the song on youTube. Jordan and I enjoyed listening to it.

  • #2

    Kosen (Monday, 22 July 2013 14:40)

    Aloha Collen-san! Thank you very much for your comments. It might take one more year...but I will upload a video of Gokigen Song with English translation. I hope I can thank you in person at the next Bon Dance!