Denny Sinnoh's "Akihabara Starlight"

Posts tagged ‘Pop Music History’

ZOOEY-CHAN IS PREGGARS !!!

She and Him_Brian

No … Matt is NOT the father, silly. Ms. Deschanel-sama and her fiancé, producer Jacob Pechenik, announced in January that they were expecting a child together.  Looks like she is “beginning to show” here in this special music video.  She and Him are in the studio to back up rock legend Brain Wilson. Mr. Wilson has a great new record out. Brian of course, is one of Zooey’s heroes. Zooey-chan has always been very comfortable in a 1960’s genre. You can hear a little Beach Boys in the songs she writes!

Brian looks good… looks good … I am hopeful.

Um … I don’t look that burnt out do I? Be honest with me!

There is also a very cute lyric video here. Retro-hip cool, as you might expect from these three.

More on Zooey’s pregnancy diet linked here.

I hope Zooey will take it easy this summer. I hope that she works LESS on the TV show and MORE on writing her songs.  Sit down there girl and write me a new Volume Number of Deschanel-penned songs.

Starlight: Five more months until September.

Image

“Spanish Was Her Loving Tongue …”

tt mexicanpin-up

“… but She she never spoke Spanish to me …”

texas tornados cd cover thanks bob

I want to share a great song from 1990, by a very good –but not well known — Texas-Mexican group the Texas Tornados.

The members were Freddy FenderFlaco JiménezAugie Meyers, and Doug Sahm (wiki links there).  I love this song. The original music and lyrics were by Texas singer-songwriter Butch Hancok. Please enjoy the accordion, the simplicity, the beauty, the mysticism, and my forlorn regrets of a lost love from long ago …

I met her in old Mexico
She would live in sad and young
This smokey room where no one could see
Her favorite poets all agree
Spanish is a loving tongue
But she never spoke Spanish to me

She was born in Monterrey
And all the Christmas songs were sung
Padres knew what she would grow up to be
Saints and sinners all agree
Spanish is a loving tongue
But she never spoke Spanish to me

Like a lion screaming in the jungle low
She’d never fool with things she couldn’t see
She spoke to all the shadows in her bungalow
But she never spoke Spanish to me

She said if you’re from Texas, so
Where’s your boots and where’s your gun
Well, I got guns that no one can see
Well, after that we both agreed
Spanish is a loving tongue
But she never spoke Spanish to me
Well, she never spoke Spanish to me

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

——————————–

When I first hear this, I thought that the part about the lady “speaking Spanish” was a metaphor about how she would … ahem … moan words in Spanish when she was in the “moment’ … ah … if you know what I mean. If she was not just faking, and … um … er … having a REAL ONE, she would let loose in Spanish … at least according to what the other “poets” claimed.

The poor guy, he never got to hear her speak Spanish. She could never truly love him.

I like the Tex-Mex-Native mystical aspects of that line “She spoke to all the shadows in her bungalow” but never to him.  On the surface it may seem like a simple song, yet it does have its mystical qualities.

Like the protagonist in the song, I also feel that “I got guns that no one can see” — even if I do not look the part of the Texan.

Starlight: My amigo Roberto — “Ella Tiene Dos Sillas Grande!” — Los Gatos de Jacobs gave me this great record (CD) for my Birthday in 1990.  Buenos Nachos Bob!

SHE AND HIM. Finally, something worth listening to on America’s NPR!

she-him_wide

Finally, something worth listening to on America’s National Public Radio!

Apparently NPR has eased its “Never have anything interesting on” format, and has allowed a free listen to the new She & Him modern-meets-retro album “Classics” which will be released on December 2.

You can hear the entire album, or listen to individual songs at the NPR website link here.

http://www.npr.org/2014/11/23/364681077/first-listen-she-him-classics?utm_content=nllink-3dc80127-Classics+Pre+Stream&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=email%7C1036467921%7C20141125&utm_source=uscolumbia-haerts&cid=nl%3A1036467921

WARNING: NPR has put a 10 second self advertisement before the album starts.  Just try not to die of boredom in that time …

I love it of course.  Zooey’s singing is sweet, but old-timey.  She does great justice to the singers of the 40s, 50s, 60s etc.  Was that Matt imitating Louis Armstrong on “Stars Fell on Alabama”?

  1. “Stars Fell on Alabama”
    2. “Oh No, Not My Baby”
    3. “It’s Not for Me to Say”
    4. “Stay Awhile”
    5. “This Girl’s in Love With You”
    6. “Time After Time”
    7. “She”
    8. “Teach Me Tonight”
    9. “It’s Always You”
    10. “Unchained Melody”
    11. “I’ll Never Be Free”
    12. “Would You Like to Take a Walk”
    13. “We’ll Meet Again”

What FUN! I suggest just starting the album and minimizing it. You can work at your desk, and have a great time with this authentic sounding retro trip. I am going to close my office door, and listen to it all morning. I will be filling out those agricultural chemical purchasing forms with a big smile on my face tomorrow.

Oh, Zooey-chan you are so wonderful …

… now if you will excuse me I will be busy fainting in happiness.

All She and Him albums are available as a high quality vinyl record.  If you want me to send you one for Christmas, just ask.

 

“Stay awhile …” WHACK .. ow ….

Please enjoy this great new music video from my favorite American band : She and  Him.

Zooeys intimate dance with "The Invisible Man"

Zooeys intimate dance with “The Invisible Man”

The song is “Say Awhile” originally made a hit by Dusty Springfield in 1964. It will appear on the new She & Him album “Covers” coming out on December 2. Yes, I already pre-ordered it!

I love the Modern-Meets-Retro styles presented here. It looks like a copy of “Better Homes” magazine circa 1966. The choreography is wonderful. The special effects look great (watch in the available HD)!

In case you could not figure it out: This was how the man was making her feel in the bedroom.

In case you could not figure it out: This dream sequence represents how the man was making her feel in the bedroom.

Matt’s production is a great tribute to the original.  Zooey is beautiful of course, and … WHACK!

Ow. Sorry everyone. Mrs. Sinnoh often hits me with a frying pan whenever I stare at Zooey Deschanel too long. … and I was NOT looking when her dress twirled up at time 1:53

WHACK!!

You will have to admit, “The Invisible Man” is one lucky dude here …

WHACK!!!

Gotta go now … ow …

Did you see the shadow of Matt’s guitar at the end?

Image

My Pop Music History: What ever happened to CHAM ?

CHAM_by_MirrorQueen

Most anime fans are familiar with the late Satoshi Kon’s directorial debut  “Perfect Blue” (trailer linked here).  The all-girl Jpop Idol group “CHAM” were an important part of this compelling, and mind-bending drama. Despite the initial  popularity of CHAM, the group has now been relegated to the “Where are they now?” files of Pop Music History.

I LOVED their big hit single: “Ai no Tenshi”.  The video below captures Mima, Rei and Yukiko at the time just  before they would rocket to stardom. It is a fantastic peak inside the recording studio.  The girls are not wearing their stage outfits here —  but who cares – they look (and sound) AMAZING.

One of the greatest anime film songs ever IMHO.

Here is a brief snippet of how they appeared in the German (translation) version of the film. Sorry for the obscure video reference — original CHAM footage is very hard to find, and valuable these days.

They were an exciting Jpop trio to watch live.  CHAM paved the way for other Idol groups.  Without CHAM’s trailblazing, Jpop girl groups today would probably not be the same!

cham on stage

Classic CHAM moves. They did it first. They did it better!

The ladies also recorded an English language version of “Ai no Tenshi (Angel of Love)”.  The song has been covered and performed in stage concerts by American singers Madonna and Tiffany. (No, Denny is NOT making that up!)

The lyrics translated into English, although seemingly cute and innocent, recap the very creepy story that is “Perfect Blue”

“Angel of Love” translation:

And now you come and see it all just for yourself
See the angel’s wings, but something else is there
And all those magic hearts are all for you again

And then you come and listen to the sweet little voice
Singing there for you and only just for you
She is protecting you right now…

And if sometimes you feel for your love
Send a little heart for her
And she’ll be there with you with her love
Waiting only for you!

And when you love her, love her she will be
A little angel, angel in your heart
You’ve got to push it, push it for her love
And then forever, ever she will be
A sweet angel of your heart to be there together

And now you need a little faith in me and yourself
When you make your way to change the destiny
If you could only see what I could do for you

And even when you feel you have a difficult time
Listen to my heart who sings to make you shine
When you start to fall in love …

Another amazing moment was captured on this YouTube video. After years out of the limelight, CHAM makes a sudden guest appearance at an Anime convention. Here, the cameraman only captures part of their show.  I do not blame him however.  My jaw would have dropped in shock: OMG — IT’S CHAM!!! … grab the camera!!!  Pardon the quality, but can you imagine, being at an Anime Conference in Russia, when CHAM makes a surprise appearance after being gone for so long?

The group had its ups and downs over the years. Mima graduated from the group to purse an acting career.  Although she was critically acclaimed, she never reached the commercial success and popularity of CHAM.

For a few years group member Mima tried to go solo as a singer, and made a number of convention appearances. Yet these never came close to matching the appeal of the three-member unit.  The video is very low quality … still any CHAM footage is valuable. Please forward to time 1:35 to see Mima’s solo.

The group would often appear at conventions, but mainly to sign autographs as they were without a record contract for over a decade.  The ladies appeared in various commercial ads, sometimes as solo models, and sometimes in pairs (Documented in this slideshow below.)

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Many years later the group surfaced at this Lisbon, Portugal fundraiser in support of Pancreatic Cancer research. This performance may actually be a little difficult for dedicated fans to watch.  The ladies are older, out of shape, and have a hard time performing their moves. Still, it is an interesting, and final note of CHAM history.

Although CHAM may have now faded into pop music history, they will be remembered as one of the most inspiring pioneers in the Idol genre.

perfectblue06 cham poster

CHAM is gone, however fans keep a Facebook page linked here.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/CHAM/278278312204229

 Enjoy the memories. It took 12 years for the light of “Perfect Blue” and CHAM to reach my world.

Image

She and Him: “It’s hard … to be ignored …”

the cover for S H classics

Denny coined the phrase: “modern-meets-retro”

PART I: I am very happy to report that there will be a new She & Him album released December 2!

The album is called “Classics” and it will be a “cover”album of classic songs, performed in that Modern-Meets-Retro sound that Mr. Matthew Ward-sama applies to his records.  Very authentic.  Not sarcastic …  not a parody … the sound is a tribute. She and Him covers are faithfully made with love to the genres — and to the eras.

They are perhaps my favorite American group. You will get about a 23 preview of the Dusty Springfield cover in the clip here.

I love this clip — too bad it is so short.  Did you see me enjoying my stereo? I was thin and professional looking at the time.  The only way it would have been more accurate would be if I were in my bomb shelter (hiding from tornadoes).

You may visit the official She & Him website linked here. I just looked and …

OH WAIT!!! The whole song is available on the official channel now!  Super! Super!!

Can you tell that I am happy? … and did you SEE those HAIRCUTS?

However, I am perhaps only slightly disappointed that Zooey Deschanel has not written another collection of songs for the album.  I consider Zooey Deschanel to be a brilliant pop-music songwriter.  As I had blogged about in a previous post linked here, I get a lot of weird looks and laughs when I make that statement.  “But she is a woman!” “She is only an ACTRESS!” they say, meaning that they think she can’t be a serious songwriter-musician. “But she is too pretty!” – they say, meaning that she cannot be taken seriously.  I disagree … but I digress …

The new album was recorded “Live in the studio” with a 20-piece orchestra.  This will be the track list, and who the originals were by …

1. Stars Fell on Alabama (Guy Lombardo, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong)
2. Oh No, Not My Baby (Maxine Brown, Dusty Springfield, Aretha Franklin, Carole King)
3. It’s Not for Me to Say (Johnny Mathis)
4. Stay Awhile (Dusty Springfield)
5. This Girl’s in Love with You (Herb Alpert)
6. Time After Time (Frank Sinatra, Chet Baker & Shirley Bassey)
7. She (Charles Aznavour, Elvis Costello)
8. Teach Me Tonight (Frank Sinatra, the DeCastro Sisters)
9. It’s Always You (Bing Crosby, Benny Goodman, Chet Baker)
10. Unchained Melody (The Righteous Brothers, Elvis Presley, Lee Ann Rimes)
11. I’ll Never Be Free (Van Morrison, Willie Nelson, Jean Shepard)
12. Would You Like to Take a Walk (Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong)
13. We’ll Meet Again (Vera Lynn, the Byrds)

Soon "Classics" will be heard on this radio!

Soon “Classics” will be heard on this radio!

PART II: The Misunderstood Deschanel-sama

Let me share a little more She and Him music with you, as I am now jumping out of my pants in anticipation …

My favorite She & Him album is 2010’s Volume II.  “In the Sun” is a bubbly throw-back to 1970s pop.  I will share the MISUNDERSTOOD music video on this YouTube link:

Why misunderstood?  The official music video looked very “High School”.  Critics thought that Zooey-chan was just badly imitating Britney Spears.  By her own admission, Zooey is not the best dancer (I always thought she was fine, but we are sometimes our own worst critics).  The “big butts” missed the point of the song, but that is always par for the course.

This high-school theme masks the simple, yet poignant lyrics about a woman who is slowly coming to the realization that she wants to leave her husband.

Full lyrics and guitar chords linked here.

On that note, I will also share this perhaps better, more sincere, She & Him performance on the David Letterman Show later the same year.  Turn on the HD! At the end, even Paul Schaeffer exclaims “I LOVED THAT”.

So do I, and I will be patently waiting for more Deschanel-penned originals : )

See more Zooey and Matt on my Pinterest board linked here

Image

My Gingham Checked Nostalgia

“Should I tell you how I feel inside?  … I feel just like Gingham Check”

Slide1

Young Denny was full of good ideas!

If you are following this blog, you are likely already familiar with AKB48’s fun and crazy  “Gingham Check” music video.  The official YouTube video is below. (I remind you to turn on HD and “CC” for English translated lyrics.)

I think that a lot of AKB fans — and all of the the big-butted critics — could not appreciate the nostalgic meaning contained within the lyrics however.  The lyrics may have gotten lost in these humorous parodies of Japanese horror movies.  The video was a lot of fun, but it has already been the subject of other blogs. I will not talk about that now —  but I will share this screen shot I once used as computer wallpaper:

Yuki Kashiwagi suggests this wallpaper for your computer.

Yuki Kashiwagi suggests this wallpaper for your computer.

The video is so Japan-pop-culture-bat-shit crazy, and the music is so fast paced, it may be difficult for one to catch the endearing simplicity and meaning in the lyrics.  Despite the crazy humor of the video, it is actually a sweet, nostalgic song.  The original lyrics are by Yasushi Akimoto.  The Japanese/English translation is available from Stage48 linked here. (I do think that the English translation for the JKT48 later is a much better  translation.)

I always loved the original, but now I think I like the JKT48 version more.  It is sung in an Indonesian-dialect.  Turn on the HD!

Somehow, someway — I am transported back to my childhood.  In this twisted, time-distorted realm, the JKT48 girls are there!  We are at one of those Americana “theme” restaurants, which feature pop culture artifacts such as Marilyn Monroe posters, juke boxes, neon signs, gas stations, etc.  I do not know how, but the girls transport me back to my youth in the early sixties. This JKT48 music video is all about how I wanted to go on a date with this one girl that I liked. Somehow she has also been transferred to this time-and-space distortion.  

Slide2

Even at that age I was already girl crazy! Here I am being a little gentleman.

The Jakarta 48 girls will help me out, as you will see.

Thanks for all the advice ladies!

Thanks for all the advice ladies!

This video version is probably a little better at capturing the spirit of the original song lyrics.  Gingham Check is another “boy’s perspective” song, a format often used in the Idol genre. (i.e. although it is sung by a woman, the lyrics tell a man’s story). I think the lyrics read better if said by a male, and that is how I will explain the song.  (Although the video above does not describe the lyrics exactly, it is still closer than the AKB48 version.) The tempo of the song is the same — upbeat, fun, and contains those great searing guitar parts.  I think they used the same music track as AKB48, but just added JKT48 vocals in Indonesian. The happiness of the music perhaps masks the bittersweet nostalgia and (perhaps) emotional pain of the lyrics.

The song is about a boy and girl walking their bikes to work on a summer morning.  I will infer that they work at the same seaside resort.  The young lady wears a blue and white “Gingham Check” uniform for her job.  The boy is in love with the young girl, who, unfortunately for him is only his “friend”.

He feels very conflicted.  He likes the girl but is too afraid to ask her out.  This conflict is symbolized by the blue and white “Gingham Check” pattern on the girl’s uniform.  “Blue-White-Blue” is the pattern the pretty young lady wears, but it is also the pattern of his internal conflict.  He wants to tell her he likes her, but what if she rejects him?  His good intentions are checked by his doubt — blue-white-blue

You girls have no idea how hard it is to make that first move. If women have the physical pain of childbirth, then men have the emotional turmoil of asking a girl for a date. I know, you are sitting in the comfort of your computer chair thinking: “That’s so easy. He should just tell her!!!”  Well, he does not want to ruin their friendship.  You see, he likes her, which makes him happy, but he likes her so much it hurts. Conflicted in opposite directions … blue-white-blue … just like Gingham Check.

As the sea comes into view,

 In a single shade of blue, 

It will tell me all I have to do,

All it takes is just one word inside my mouth,

But I try to speak and nothing will come out ..

I remember having these same feelings. I think that anyone can relate.

The summer goes on. Everyday he thinks that THIS WILL BE THE DAY that he will finally tell her how he feels.  But of course he doesn’t.  Blue-White-Blue.  Of course, he is kicking himself, but there is always the next day when he will walk with her to work again.  Should he tell her?  … “Yes-No-Yes” … feeling conflicted by LOVE cross-hatched by DESPAIR  … Blue-White-Blue

The summer days, begin to shorten, the days become cooler, and the boy realizes he will never tell her.  They will work together again next summer, so he might tell her then.

Should we be critical of the boy for never having the guts to speak up?  No.  That he never tells her of his love — is maybe not such a bad thing.  One has to have compassion, even for your former self.

There was once a great movie line read by actor Jack Palance in the old Billy Crystal comedy movie “City Slickers”.  The Palance character describes a farmhouse woman he would often see while riding herds back and forth across the prairie.  He describes her beauty, and the song she often sang as she hung out her laundry.  Smiling, he tells the other cowboys that he fell in love with the woman, and goes on to say what the memory of her means to him.  The other guys exclaim: “But why didn’t you approach her … she could have been the love of your life”!   Palance replies “… She is.”

It may be difficult for a young person to understand that.  When you eventually reach the nostalgic place a mature heart has traveled, you may understand. Do we have the compassion to forgive ourselves?

I am also going to include the “English Version” performed again by JKT48.  English lines are onscreen. Although some lines feel a little forced, a little awkward, in order to match the rhythm of the song, I think that the simple sweetness of the Mr. Akimoto’s lyrics shine through.

Lastly I will share with you the cover by GooseHouse sung in Japanese.  It is very sweet.  Full of joy in the way that only GooseHouse can make it! Their version slows the song and captures the bittersweet emotions and simplicity of the original Japanese lyrics.

The music video is FUN and CUTE.  It makes me happy, in my world that is otherwise filled with ugliness. The “Big Butts” will never understand.  Yet another reason Why I Like AKB48 — and the 48 Families!

Starlight: The JKT48 Indonesian version took four months of light-speed travel to reach my world.

Tag Cloud

MNL48 Translations

JPN to ENG translations of MNL48 content

Escape Zero

News and reviews with Smuggy and Friends~!

Art Expedition

a painter´s attempt to conquer the great white canvas

A True Outsider Writing

I read what seduces me, I write what perverts me.

MiddleMe

Becoming Unstuck

Collinization 2.0

Just another mild-mannered blog featuring artwork by me, Collin J Wood, and many things that interest and inspire me...

The Great Passage

manga and words for the weird

Yuri Death Ray

Turning fanon into canon

SaitoWinterStar

Denny Sinnoh's "Akihabara Starlight"

The Lily Garden

Yuri visual novels, yuri anime, and yuri manga

Cars Club

Real Car Pics With Names

KAWAIIPAPERPANDAS

"If you hadn't fallen into madness you might've been treated as a hero." -No Guns Life

Lucid Being💫

Digital Life After Life!

SANAKANIN

adventures in alternative fashion

japan.world.net

MUSIC WORLD NET

IceCreamNako🍨

💖矢吹奈子中文首站💖

Renmi's World

The world through my camera lens...

Life, the Universe, and Lani

observations, humor, and nonsense

John Jr's Blog

Dreams And More

Jeffrey's blog

I write things, you read them. Seems like a fair deal

Campzzz

The problem slayer

Aphoristic Album Reviews

Personal Album Review Website

historyreads

an informative site for rediscovering art from the past!

Single at 60 Sucks

A blog for women starting over at 40, 50, 60 and beyond. "Sixty the new sexy," my ass!

Power Plant Men

True Power Plant Stories

Fanfiction Anime World

Welcome to Fanfiction Anime World アニメ

Himalayan Buddhist Art - Art Bouddhiste de l'Himalaya

5th to 18th century Buddhist Art of the Himalayas

ENGLISH CONNECTION

The medium for cultural understanding, economic cooperation and fostering peace.

Iwata Karen Indonesian Fans Club

岩田華怜インドネシアファンクラブ

100 Word Anime

Reviewing Anime

Sunlit Sakura

A Japanese Lifestyle Blog

My Aesthetic Insanity

Open the Doors of Perception

Nicole's 5 Cents

Semi-insightful, self-critiquing feminist with a passion for learning (especially from mistakes)

Anime QandA

Asking The Big Questions on Anime and Manga

The Millennial Merit

Perhaps they'll listen now

MPA Travels

Exploring Japan Through Pictures

Anime Girls NYC

Anime all day everyday!

JKB Idol Updates

Your daily dose of Philippine Idols. News about the latest Idols around the country.

Chaula Rininta Anindya

Terrorism and Military Studies Enthusiast

%d bloggers like this: