Maki Asakawa (浅川 マキ) – Cat Nap (1982)

Capa

Japan. Today, we’ve got a point outside the curve of someone’s discography, nothing less than Asakawa Maki (Maki Asakawa, January 27, 1942 – January 17, 2010) the major female precursor for folk, rock and pop audiences in the country. Her hoarse and deep voice, hypnotic eyes and persona, all black style and the (always) cigarette in tow, managed to capture national and foreign fame throughout an extensive famous career. Much based on folk-rock, blues, and some jazz, these previous albums and characters will entry along with our galaxy. A rare live presentation it is available (for now at least) and can be seen here, check it out!

Today we’ll start with a twist overview. Different from its first releases and acclaimed developments through the ’70s, Cat Nap has its unique blends from Jazz, Rock, Funk, Reggae, Ska, Post-Punk and Pop in a solid experience direct from the early ’80s. (!)

Promo 76'
Promo 76′

Let’s go to their history:

Jazz and blues vocalist, lyricist, composer, and orchestrator Maki Asakawa was born in 1942 in Ishikawa Prefecture. After a short stint working at the town office in her small village, she headed for Tokyo to pursue music. She started by playing at U.S. military bases and cabarets, where she refined her style, which was largely informed by Billie Holiday and Mahalia Jackson. Asakawa released her first Ep, Tokyo Banka, on the Victor imprint in 1967. In 1968, Maki got her big break when she appeared for three days running at the Shinjuku underground theater known as Sasoriza, a project of underground playwright and controversial movie director Shuji Terayama. Shortly thereafter, she signed with Toshiba (currently EMI Music Japan), making her official major-label debut in July 1969 single’s: Yo Ga Aketara / Kamome.

Since then, Maki Asakawa has consistently released music and appeared live, garnering praise for her unique interpretation of jazz, blues, and avant-gardeshe has also collaborated with Yosuke Yamashita and Akira Sakata, and composer Ryuichi Sakamoto among many other legends!

Sadly, she died of acute heart failure in her hotel room in Nagoya on a Sunday night and later pronounced dead. She was 67. (RIP)

Years Active: 1967 ~ 2010

Live
Live

Let’s go to our album:

At the time of its release (October 21, 1982), Cat Nap received this type of commentary from the Japanese press:

‘A splendid work, with new horizons that Maki challenged, colored by improvisation, honed melody and stand out performance.’

Fact. Along with its trumpeter, composer and partner Toshinori Kondo, Maki sails free among a beautiful kaleidoscope of modern sound; once again (as JAGATARA), the 80’s aesthetics that prevailed through, were as revolutionary as those from previous decades. This is a very uptempo one with incredible experimental moments.

The ‘IM’ highlights are for: Shinkyoku B, a monster groove-reggae with crazy harmonics, fuzz and sexy vocals from our bluesy queen. A perfect song for a tropical panorama, good energies, friends and a cold drink! And Machine (an instrumental one), probably the pinnacle of the album. With its own avant-garde atmosphere, mimicking the functioning of some real machine, speaking of a Pop artist, this is quite something! We got dissonant woodwinds, atonal guitar solos, multiple sound effects and a constant pace beat that last until the final second! Crazy, crazy, crazy. 良い旅!

Writing
Indefectible Cigarette

Tracks include:

A1 暗い眼をした女優 (Kurai Me Wo Shita Joyuu)

A2 忘れたよ (Wasureta Yo)

A3 こころ隠して (Kokoro Kakushite)

A4 むかし (Mukashi)

B1 新曲“B” (Shinkyoku B)

B2 夕暮れのまんなか (Yuugure No Manaka)

B3 マシン (Machine)

B4 今なら (Ima Nara)

Maki Asakawa: Vocal

Toshinori Kondo: Trumpet, Percussion

Toshiyuki Honda: Alto Sax, Soprano Sax, Flute

Shigeharu Mukai: Trombone

Kiyoshi Sugimoto: Guitar

Kazuo Tobita: Guitar

Tamio Kawabata: Bass

Hiro Tsunoda: Drums

  • Yoshino Kimutsugi: Recording & Mixing Engineer
  • Tatsuya Sakamoto: Second Engineer
  • Nonaka Lily: Front Cover Art

Recorded at July 19, 20 and 21 1982 at Take One Studio.

Produced: 寺本幸司・柴田徹

  • All lyrics: 浅川マキ (Maki Asakawa) except B-2 by 山内テツ (Tetsu Yamauchi)
  • All songs composed by 近藤等則 (Toshinori Kondo)
  • Label: Express
  • Toshiba EMI (Japan)
The Inseparable Cigarette

Mother Love Bone – Shine Ep (1989)

Capa

Seattle, 1988. Before the worldwide mass exposure created on the so-called grunge scene and its characters, a genre that suddenly was self-proclaimed the soundtrack of Generation X (sic), there was a short-lived band who certainly opened the gates of stardom to all, this band was Mother Love Bone!

The first one to draw national media attention to the region, a contract with a major record company (PolyGram), putting the early Seattle scene definitely on the map. Alongside with Soundgarden, Melvins, Mudhoney, Nirvana and Alice in Chains, this prominent quintet had only a two-year living, with a full length (posthumous) album and an Ep. With no more than 20 shows held, one west-side mini-tour, two videoclips and a lot of hype around them, MLB was a comet of love.

Led by a flamboyant Andrew Patrick Wood (January 8, 1966 – March 19th, 1990), who previously created with its first band Malfunkshun, an alter-ego stage persona called, L’andrew the Love Child, a response to the Satan worship metal clichéLove Rock 333 (their sound) was the title that Andy glimpse, much based on its personal rock faves: Kiss, Queen, Elton John, and Marc Bolan. Andy’s exuberant personality, outlandish clothes, and funny lyrics helped bring attention to the band.

Mother Love Bone
Mother Love Bone

But the path the band was predestined to follow was subtly interrupted by Andy’s od on March 19th, 1990. He had historical problems with cocaine and heroin since 1985 (its first rehab), after the tour opening for The Dogs D’Amour, on mid’s 89, he checked himself into rehab and passed the last four months of the year sober. Their full-length album was recorded during this time. With the turn of the decade, high expectations on Apple began to arise, as its three remixes and a certain pressure.

A righteous future was broken when its fiancée Xana la Fuente, found him on a comatose state lying on the bed of their apartment. After three days in Harborview Hospital, living on life support, Andy was diagnosed with hemorrhage aneurysm; together with it’s family and band members, with A Night At The Opera playing, holding hands around the bed, they decided to plug out the life support and let him go.

Andy Wood
Andy Wood

Six months later the basis for Pearl Jam was formed and started to rehearse. Temple of The Dog was recorded on the end of the year, with two songs made directly to Andy (Say Hello 2 Heaven and Reach Down) it was Chris Cornell’s last homage to his friend, they also lived together for six months. Both Ten and TOTD releases happened in early 1991 and hits the musical charts in different ways, yet Seattle’s scene had already been paved by Andy, the love child. (RIP)

Let’s go to their history:

We will let Malfunkshun and Andy’s complete story to a dedicated post on the future, however, there is a very nice documentary about them directed by Scot Barbour.

By 1987, Andrew was living in Seattle and hanging out with Jeff Ament (bass) and Stone Gossard (guitar), members of Green River. It wasn’t long before the three of them were writing together, and as time went by they became closer. In late 87, early 88, Lords of the Wasteland started playing occasional shows, with the inclusion of Bruce Fairweather (guitar), though the repertoire was composed of covers.

By the time of their last show, Andy, anxious for success, left Malfunkshun and started to dedicate all his time for the new band. Stupid names like Dum Dum Boys or Daddy Long Legs were suggested, but it was from Andy’s mind that the band would be recognized: Mother Love Bone.

Promo
Promo

Regan Hagar (Malfunkshun’s drummer) was replaced by Greg Gilmore (10 Minute Warning) and the band changed their name, after a week of persuasion. They got into the studio as soon as possible and recorded 10 songs including, Holly Roller, Stargazer, Lady Godiva Blues and Capricorn Sister. The demo was received by Kelly Curtis (later the manager of Pearl Jam). Kelly made it possible for the band to record another demo, this one was sent to Geffen records who paid for them to make a third demo. With songs like Bone China, Crown of Thorns and Captain Hi-Top.

The demos made it out to a bunch of different companies, so the band waited through the summer and it paid off; they got a lot of calls from labels that heard the demo and they finally decided to signed with Polygram. They even got there on label on the company, Stardog Label. This process took place during February / August 1988.

They returned home and signed Kelly Curtis as their manager. In early 1989 starts the process to their debut album Shine. The band went on tour for the album and then took a few months to break, by September they were recording their next album.

Love Rock
Love Rock

In 1990 they had played around Seattle and gained much respect from local bands like Soundgarden and Melvins. The band had finished making their upcoming album Apple when Andy checked himself into a rehab program to deal with his addiction.

They were set to make their debut, when Wood died of a heroin od on March 16th.

Temple of the Dog was formed in Andy’s memory. The band included Stone Gossard, Jeff Ament, Soundgarden’s Matt Cameron, and Chris Cornell, and the new guy Eddie Vedder! After Temple of the Dog, Stone and Jeff got together with Eddie, Mike McCready, and Dave Krusen to form Pearl Jam. Bruce Fairweather joined Love Battery and Greg played with Blind Horse and Endino’s Earthworm.

Let’s go to our record:

Andy Wood, Jeff Ament, and Stone Gossard passed through the early ’80s in Seattle with punk, hard, glam, arena rock bands, gigs, friends, shows and a whole scene of musicians. They’re one of the founders from the so-called grunge scene and it’s here that this record gets something special and reveals us another side. It doesn’t resemble anything from the heaviness or angst-filled lyrics and moods like Soundgarden, Melvins, Mudhoney, Nirvana or Alice in Chains.

Apple's Photo Session
Apple’s Photo Session

With a heavy-tenor (like Robert Plant) sung by Andy, its lyrics, persona and a sharp band, they got all bases from the American Hard / Glam, with some mellow ballads on piano and funky uptempo. These ego imaginary dreamy lyrics ruled the short production of the band, yet they made also some mordacious, happy humor criticism, especially about catholicism, freedom of love, and the myth of commercial rockstar.

This is a small 5-track release, there are some proto-grunge, hard rock, funk, an epic ballad, and a blues. The ‘IM’ highlights are for: Crown of Thorns, their most famous song, much covered by Pearl Jam, got an 8-minute piece, here with Chloe Dancer introduction, the touching preamble reveals us some brute biographical lyrics based on choices, love, death, and addiction. An almost forgot classic from a modern rock!

Seattle's Wall
Seattle’s Wall

Cameron Crowe’s film about love on the early ’90s, Singles, was set in Seattle. On the very beginning of the film, we’re shown to a wall with Mother Love Bone name’s on it, still, Andy’s death interrupted any chance of a sequel or international recognition.

And Capricorn Sister: One of the first made, a nice blues with an over the top performance by Andy, remembering us those old blues singers from the South. This song also appears on Apple, but Shine’s version is much better, on the very final there’s a little funny hidden-track, Zanzibar, check it!

The Ep was recorded in November 1988, during ten days (or five?)Lastly, there is a revealing excerpt of Scot Barbour’s interview about Andy’s final moments:

Single's Wall
Single’s Wall

Scot: ‘Andy was allergic to everything, well not everything. But a lot of different prescription drugs & foods. In fact, that’s the REAL theory of how Andy REALLY died. Andy actually survived the heroin overdose and it looked like he was going to pull it off and live. When he was in a coma he was given a few different drugs to help him come back from the coma. The back of his brain swelled up so badly that the top his spinal cord actually protruded his brain causing him to be brain dead.

That is when they decided to take him off Life Support. The belief is that his brain swelling was the result of an allergic reaction to at least one of the drugs that were administered to him during that time. Coincidentally, the patient records for the last 24 hours of Andy’s life are missing and have yet to be located. And Virginia Mason (?) Hospital in downtown Seattle has made no statement. (!)

Shine's Tour
Shine’s Tour

He wasn’t into drugs as much as people are lead to believe. Andy had just gotten out of rehab recently. And the heroin dose he overdosed on was extremely small. Another very coincidental thing was the Hospital had reported four other heroin od’s that evening Andy was brought to the hospital, it was definitely a ‘bad batch’ that had hit the streets and wound up in Andy’s arm.’ (!) Drum Bun!

Tracks Include:

1 Thru Fade Away

2 Mindshaker Meltdown

3 Half Ass Monkey Boy

4 Chloe Dancer / Crown of Thorns

5 Capricorn Sister / Zanzibar

Released: March 20, 1989

Credits

  • Artwork: Klotz
  • Bass: Jeff Ament
  • Drums: Greg Gilmore
  • Guitar: Bruce Fairweather, Stone Gossard
  • Photography: Charles Peterson
  • Producer: Mark Dearnley
  • Vocals, Piano, Lyrics: Andrew Wood

Notes

Recorded at London Bridge Studios, Seattle. //// Mixed at London Bridge Studio, Seattle.

Mastered at Sterling Sound, New York.

Management: Kelly Curtis Management.

Label: Stardog/Mercury

(P) (C) 1989 Stardog Records.

Seattle
Seattle

Novos Bahianos + Baby Consuelo – No Final do Juízo (1971)

capa cópia

Brazil, 1969. After the infamous AI-5 (institutional act #5), the dictatorship that was ruling entered in a new phase, seeing its 5th birthday, with an urban guerrilla and a mass wave of protests throughout the country. The most reactionary group made a coup inside the coup. From that moment the previous censorship was installed on every layer of the society, no civil guaranties at all, any manifestation was a subversive act, elections/congress suspended, as the unions and student leadership.

The terror against anyone contrary to the order was real. Many people were persecuted, arrested, tortured, killed and buried as indigents under the iron tutelage of the State, and the connivance from big entrepreneurs, media groups, multinational companies, industrial bourgeoisie and CIA (Torture expertise). (!)

100.000 March, 1968
100.000 March 1968

The only thing that this tropical, multicultural and joyful society could vote and participate, was the emblematic Festivais (music festivals), liberated by the junta. Created in 1965, aired and transmitted live by multiple broadcasters, always held by the end of the year, it was the greatest musical event from the time; eagerly awaited, with mass media coverage, the crowds could boo and cheered to death in a collective catharsis, revealing new national superstars or villains!

Renowned artist like Elis Regina, Geraldo Vandré, Edu Lobo, Nara Leão, Chico Buarque, Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Gal Costa, Tom Zé, and many others was revealed there. However, due to the turbulent development in 1968 festival, the dictatorship decided to prune and systematize the spectacle. There was a strict preoccupation to show an ordained happily country to the world, the festival would be transmitted on early January to Europe, via Rede Globo (sic), in a 3-hour special.

At the end of the year, most mentioned artists were exiled by solidarity or not, Tropicalism was dead, Marighella too; inside this turbulent musical void, Os Novos Bahianos (first graphed with H, after without) emerged and caused a fuss.

Early Promo
Early Promo

Let’s go to their history:

It all started at Vila Velha theater (Salvador, Bahia) with the show ‘O Desembarque dos Bichos Depois do Dilúvio Universal’. The members: Luiz Dias Galvão, agronomist, poet, musician, cinema and dramatics enthusiast, 32 years; Antônio Carlos de Morais Pires, 21 years of fiery musical essay at Turiassu, interior of Bahia; Paulo Roberto de Figueiredo, ex-crooner from Orquestra Avanço, 23 years, nicknamed Paulinho Boca de Cantor; Bernadete Dinorah de Carvalho (Baby), from Niterói (Rio de Janeiro), newcomer to Salvador, which commemorate his seventeen years living under the bridge (!); lastly, Jorginho, Carlinhos, Lico e Pedro Anibal de Oliveira Gomes (Pepeu) that formed the backing band, Os Leif’s. With the exception of Bernadette, they were all from Bahia, unheard, strange, radicals and young.

It was the beginning of Novos Baianos, at the tropical chaos of 1969.

Baby, carioca problem-girl, dreamed, like many in its age, being an artist, a singer, the one who deserves posters with your initials. Her baptism name didn’t help too. In an impetus of boredom and freedom, she goes with her friend, Ediane, to Salvador, there she meets Galvão and Moraes at Brasa’s, a unique bar from there. Paulinho (boca de cantor) also met the triad and joins them at Dona Maritó boarding house. The only one with previous musical experience (live shows and recording), were Pepeu (guitar), owner of an unmistakable style, genuinely Brazilian, crossing Hendrix with Choro. (!!)

1970
1970

In the beginning, only a quartet: Moraes, Galvão, Paulinho e Baby (whose new name was born and celebrated from a movie character) which was accompanied by Leif’s. Galvão was the poet and mentor, Moraes the main composer, Galvão’s partner, with a subtle acoustic guitar. Paulinho was the rascal, Lúcifer, and mellow singer. Pepeu the guitar hero. Baby the stoned singer. All, with a Tropicalia pinch in 1969/70.

After the racket from Dilúvio in Salvador, they went to São Paulo, were performed in numerous TV shows always exceeding the expected number of songs and staging absurd expedients. The first manager was Marcos Lázaro, through João Araújo (manager of Gil, Caetano, Gal) they signed with RGE and release their first single:

Yet in 1969: De Vera /// Colégio de Aplicação.

Then in 1970, a caustic, sardonic, threatening Lp (Ferro Na Boneca – RGE) which included tracks from the compact, a cornucopia of styles/titles. They also participate as actors and on the soundtrack from two Underground (Marginal) films of the era: Meteorango Kid e Caveira My Friend. Still, they released a double compact without Baby, who was trying her first steps on a solo foray.

These early albums will have dedicated posts in the near future!

Fun!
Fun!

Let’s go to our record:

Today’s album is an incredible double compact, never re-released on Cd, forgotten and hated by the band due to technical aspects. It was the one and only attempt on Phillips, at the time directed by the mighty Nelson MottaOne thing that must be said, was the radical transformation that the band went through after meeting with João Gilberto, he also lived with them for a short period at the infamous apartment in Botafogo. The roots, that were until then based in various styles, such as, rock, baião, soul, tango, turned into samba and choro strictly.

This little revolution happened in late 1971, and it’s well counted in the documentary Filhos de João. So this is their last release without the sound that would be recognized and praised not only in Brazil but worldwide!

Psychedelic Novos
Psychedelic Novos

We go from hippy folk to a Latin brass experience (even sung in Spanish!), passing through some sambas and harsh fuzz rocks sang in an over the top registry by Baby! Special mention lyrics go for Dê um Rolê, a counterculture hymn, that became very (very!) famous on the interpretation of Gal Costa, the song preaches love from head to toe, going completely against the terror that was represented by the military.

Please enjoy this little gem and Jó Utat!

Tracks Include:

Novos Bahianos + Baby Consuelo – No Final do Juízo (1971)

A1 Dê Um Rolê (Moraes Moreira / Galvão) ~ Paulinho Boca de Cantor

A2 Você Me Dá Um Disco? (Moraes Moreira / Pepeu Gomes / Galvão) ~ Baby do Brasil

B1 Caminho de Pedro (Moraes Moreira / Galvão) ~ Moraes Moreira

B2 Risque (Moraes Moreira / Galvão) ~ Moraes Moreira e Baby do Brasil

Credits

Production Director: Nelson Motta

Photo: David Drew Zingg

Compacto Duplo – Philips 6245 003

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