Aneka (born Mary Sandeman on November 20, 1954) is a Scottish female singer who earned "one-hit wonder" status in the UK and Europe, but fairly moderate success in the United States.
She got her name through a telephone directory. Before hitting it big, Aneka focused on folk music.
In 1981, Aneka recorded the song called "Japanese Boy" and her record company was so impressed by the results, the song was released as a single that summer.
The song became a hit, peaking at #1 in the UK, Ireland, Sweden, Switzerland, and Europe. It was also moderately success in Canada, Norway, Austria, the Netherlands, Austria, and Norway.
In the US, the song became a moderately successful dance hit, peaking at #15 on Billboard's dance charts.
The success of Aneka's song gave her a well-known Japanese image, but because her image was so well-known with her hit song, she kept the name, but modified her image.
In October of that same year, Aneka released her self-titled debut album which managed to peak at #19 on the albums chart in Switzerland.
During that month, Aneka released her second single, "Little Lady" which didn't match the success of her previous single, but was moderately successful in Austria, Germany, and Sweden. It also peaked at #50 on the UK Singles chart.
The song also raised concern about what Aneka's image should be now since a Japanese look was considered inappropriate for the song along with giving Aneka a limited lifespan.
She changed her image to a 19th century lady image, but kept her same singing voice.
The last single from the album, "Ooh Shooby Doo Doo Lang" which managed to chart moderately well in Austria and Germany, but failed to make any impact in the UK. In Europe, Aneka's single, "I Was Free" was released, but failed to make the charts there.
Aneka released two more singles, "Heart to Beat" in 1983 and "Rose, Rose, I Love You" in 1984 to little impact on the charts.
After that, she dropped her name and went back to her folk music career under her birth name, Mary Sandeman. Aneka appeared with the Scottish Fiddle Orchestra on record and in concert.
In 1994, Aneka (now Mary) made a documentary called "Aite Mo Ghaoil: Mary Sandeman and Islay." In 2006, she was featured on a UK television documentary, "Bring Back the One Hit Wonders."
To see the music video for "Japanese Boy," go to:
To see the music video for "Ooh Shooby Doo Doo Lang," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "Little Lady," go to;
To see a fan-made video for "Rose, Rose, I Love You," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "Heart to Beat," go to: