Life Is A Rock - 洋楽こそ我が人生
洋楽全般について、英米ヒット・チャートに登場有無に関係なく、お気に入りの洋楽作品についての独り言やコメントをつれづれに掲載します。「新旧お宝アルバム!」「恒例グラミー賞大予想」など定期コラムが中心です。洋楽 ファンサイト、meantime(www.meantime-jp.com)のスピンオフ企画としてお楽しみ下さい。
Unsung Gems 70s to Now - Facebook 追いつきアップ(Part 3)

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 11

(2012.8.25 FB Posted)

You've Got It - Simply Red (1989) 
From the album "A New Flame"

Although this beautiful blue-eyed soul song written by Lamont Dozier of Motown fame was cut as single in UK, it wasn't even a major hit for whatever reasons, so this definitely qualifies as an "unsung gem." Mick Hucknall is one of the best blue-eyed soul singers that UK has ever produced, and this song clearly proves it and also reflects the unforgettable atmosphere of treasuring the good R&B musics now & then so prevalent in UK back in mid- to late 80s. Mick's voice can give you some breezy coolness in this searing heat of summer...enjoy!


Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 12

(2012.8.26 FB Posted)

Shaekespeare - Susan Cagle (2006) 
From the album "The Subway Recordings"

Honestly speaking, I don't know why Susan Cagle is still unnoticed even after she debuted with the brilliant album "The Subway Recordings." Her solid songwriting and mainstream catchy pop/rock is right on the money for most of current music fans - consider her as Tracy Chapman rocking on the self-written pop songs as if she's Taylor Swift! This song, and all of those in the album, was recorded live in NYC Subway stations, and you couldn't help yourself but to tap and stomp to the beat and her great song! Please take a listen to the whole album, as it was so good that I put this album as #2 Best Album of 2006.

正直言ってこれだけの才能とパフォーマンスを見せてくれる実力派スーザン・ケイグルが、素晴らしいデビューアルバム『The Subway Recordings』リリース後もう5年経つのに未だにメジャーな人気を得ていない理由がわからない。彼女の実力あるソングライティングとメインストリームのキャッチーなポップ・ロックは正に今の音楽ファンのストライク・ゾーンだと思うのだが。誤解を恐れずにたとえると、ロックっぽいトレーシー・チャップマンがまるテイラー・スイフトのような歌声でポップ・ソングを軽快に歌っているのがスーザンという感じ。この曲とこのアルバムの殆どの曲が実際にNYCの地下鉄の駅でバスキング・ライブ収録されたもので、曲を聴くと体を動かさずにいられない、そんな魅力いっぱいのアルバム、是非一度聴いて見て下さい。ちなみにあまりに良かったので私は自分の2006年度ベスト・アルバムの第2位に入れました。

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 13

(2012.9.2 FB Posted)

Crazy - Hot House (1988) 
From the album "South"

The album "South" is truly a buried gem with the highest musicianship quality issued in 1980's UK during its R&B renaissance era. All songs but three were written by the band and the excellent vocalist Heather Small, who later becomes famous as lead vocal of M People ("Moving On Up" hit UK Top 10 and US Top 40). Back in 1988, Hot House was one of those UK soul bands, but an excellent one. Take a listen to this sizzling R&B ballad - Heather's vocal reminiscent that of big blues big names such as Ella. And this song was written by Willie Nelson! The rest of the album is equally or even more wonderful and whenever you find this truly unnoticed gem in the CD store - I strongly suggest that you grab it if you are love a true good music. Enjoy!

この曲の収録されたアルバム『South』は80年代UKがR&B懐古ブームの真っ最中にリリースされた素晴らしいミュージシャンシップで作り上げられた正に見逃された逸品というに相応しい作品。3曲以外は全曲バンドの自作自演で、共作者の一人、ボーカルヘザー・スモールは後にMピープルを結成し、英米でヒット曲となった「Moving On Up」を発表。1988年当時はホットハウスはシーンを彩るUKソウルバンドのワンオブゼムでしたがその音楽性は素晴らしかった。この匂い立つようなR&Bバラードを是非聴いて下さい。ヘザーのボーカルは堂々としてエラを彷彿させるほどの表現力。そしてこの曲、実はウィリー・ネルソンの曲なんですね!アルバムの他の曲も本当に素晴らしいので、いい音楽が好きな方は次にCD屋でこのアルバムを見かけたら是非ゲットすることをお勧めします。Enjoy!

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 14 

(2012.9.9 FB Posted)

Black Gold - Esperanza Spalding (2012) 
From the album "Radio Music Society"

She came out of nowhere last year to nab the Best New Artists for 2011 Grammy as the first jazz artist ever to win that award. She is the youngest instructor at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. And she's a cool R&B and jazz singer playing wood bass. How cool is that! And if you take a look at this video clip, you will feel her deep love for the music and pride in being the part of the African American cultural heredity. If you love R&B, jazz, blues, soul music - I bet you instantly love this tune, and eventually, this album. I know this album will definitely make it to my 2012 annual top 10 list. Enjoy!


Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 15

(2012.9.15 FB Posted)

Just Call My Name - Alyson Williams (1989) 
From the album "Raw"

Back when I was dipped deep down in 80's soul, Alyson's "Just Call My Name" was day-changing song at the midnight after a lot of dancing, with a glass of good rum & soda. This is quintessential 80's slow jam at its best. The harmonix sound of the guitar of the intro always turns me on....enjoy this gem after midnight, with your better half if possible.



Unsung Gems 70s to Now - Facebook追いつきアップ(Part 2)

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 6

(2012.8.5 FB Posted)

New York, New York - Ryan Adams (2001) 
From the album "Gold"

Whoever was in New York City in 2001 to go through the 9-11 incident, and whoever loves the great American roots music, Ryan Adams' this song is something that cannot be forgotten for years. Even though having released great alt-country, roots rock, and troubadour type singer-and-songwriter gems for all these years, Ryan Adams have only been recognized by the music critics and dedicated followers, and that's really a shame. This second solo album is simply a masterpiece for those who loved 70s country rock. Take a listen!


Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 7

(2012.8.11 FB Posted)

Zero To Sixty In Five - Pablo Cruise (1976) 
From the album "Lifeline"

Before Pablo Cruise broke the U.S. hit chart with "Whatcha Gonna Do?," they had already been the U.S. west coast FM playlist staple. Take a listen to this thrilling and hard driving, but yet lyrical instrumental gem. Try visualizing the tube-riding surfer in the Hawaiian ocean! Great music for a hot summer day. The title refers to the time a speeding car takes to get to 60 mph from zero - 5 seconds! By the way, they are coming to Blue Note Tokyo on August 27-29 - must go!

1977年に全米最高位6位のヒットとなった「Whatcha Gonna Do?」でブレイクする前から、パブロ・クルーズは全米西海岸のFM曲のプレイリストの常連。中でもサーファー達を中心に人気を集めていたこのスリリングながら詩情あふれるインスト曲(映画「フリーライド」のテーマ曲でもあった)は今聞いても興奮します。この曲を聞きながらハワイの波に挑むサーファーをイメージしながら、暑い夏の一日を過ごして下さい。タイトルは、スピードレースで車が停止状態から時速60マイル(96キロ)まで5秒で行ってしまう、という意味だそうです。時にこのパブロクルーズ、何と今月末にブルーノート東京で33年ぶりの来日ギグを行うとのこと。行かねば!

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 8

(2012.8.14 FB Posted)

Nothing But A Miracle - Diane Birch (2009) 
From the album "Bible Belt"

Anything could happen in the music world - right in the middle of 2000's, how could you imagine that you could bump into this wonder mixture of Carole King, Laura Nyro, and Bonnie Bramlet all into one? This indie release by 29 year old blue-eyed singer songwriter from Michigan was soooo good that it won the 2009 CD Grand Prix Award selected by CD shop employees in Japan, and made it to the best album ranking in my own 2009 list! Her song and singing definitely grab your heart and if you're in for R&B, you will fall in love with her. Please check out another video clip in which none other Daryl Hall duets with Diane in his own "Daryl's Room" show (http://youtu.be/H9lyrOETXao). Hugely recommendable album - you're not going to be disappointed.


Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 9

(2012.8.15 FB Posted)

Ol' 55 - Eagles (1974) 
From the album "On The Border"

I know Tom Waits might hate their cover of his song, but unless I met up with the album "On The Border" and this song, I wouldn't have suck it up for the Eagles and American rock, and eventually reached Tom Waits to find even more beautiful original rendition of this song! (Tom's original is in the album "Closing Time (1973)" and is here - http://youtu.be/ZXunos4IXDU- another masterpiece) This is before Eagles bloats itself up to larger than their own lives, and when we still had Bernie Leadon and Randy Meisner in the lineup. You can actually visualize a pickup truck running away from you into the Nevada desert - the final chorus refrain is particularly making this song memorable. Great song beautifully done with complete justice.

原曲の作曲者で曲者シンガーソングライターのトム・ウェイツは彼らのカバーをお気に召さないと思うけど、僕に取っては、このアルバムのこの曲に巡り会わなかったら、イーグルスをはじめとするアメリカンロックにはまることもなく、結果的にトム・ウェイツにたどり着いて彼の美しいオリジナル・バージョンに驚嘆することもなかった(アルバム「Closing Time」収録の彼のオリジナルもこちらでどうぞ:http://youtu.be/ZXunos4IXDU)、そんな大事な一曲。ホテキャリとかで自らもコントロールできないくらいにイーグルスが巨大化してしまう前、まだバーニー・レドンランディ・マイズナーが初期からのイーグルスの美しさを支えていたそんな時代の歌です。この曲を聴くとネヴァダの砂漠のまっただ中の一本道を夕陽に向かって走り去っていくピックアップトラックが見えるのは僕だけでしょうか。曲の最後の部分のコーラス・リフレインも含め、オリジナルの名曲の良さを見事に表現したカバーです。

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 10

(2012.8.19 FB Posted)

Whammer Jammer - The J. Geils Band (1972) 
From the live album "Full House"

I'm sure you had listened to this one of the greatest rock and roll blues harp song of all time around midnights at FEN (now AFRTS) radio, back in the 70s and 80s. Magic Dick did put himself as the rock and roll blues harp legend with this sole performance, and you know what, it still kicks ass! Great for summer parties - enjoy!


Unsung Gems 70s to Now - Facebook追いつきアップ(Part 1)
こちらのブログのアップ不足をカバーするために、Facebookの方でちょこちょこアップしてる音楽関係の書き込みをこちらにもアップしておくことにしました。FBやってない人にも読んでもらえるので。で、手始めに、7月から始めた、「埋もれた名曲〜Unsung Gem 70s to Now」の過去分をcatch upのためアップすることにします。Enjoy!
Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 1

(2012.7.28 FB posted)

昨日たまたま某所の集まりで名前の出ていた織田くんの向こうを張って、シングルカットされていない曲で、一般には知られてないけどお勧めしたい曲を不定期でご紹介する企画をやります。題して「Unsung Gems - 70s to Now」。気分は昔のNHK FM「クロスオーバー・イレブン」!

I'm starting the FB posting titled "Unsung Gem - 70s to Now." This is to share non-single tracks but nonetheless great songs to anybody who loves music! Enjoy!

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 1

"Lahaina Luna" by Dan Fogelberg & Tim Weisberg 
From the album "Twin Sons Of Different Mothers" (1978)

Great for hot summer morning, thinking about the unworldly turquois ocean far, far away....

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 2

(2012.7.29 FB posted)

Sunshine - Enchantment (1976) 
From the album "Enchantment"

The quintessential 70's slow jam from the underrated R&B vocal group from Cleveland OH and Detroit MI! Anybody who is moved by "Gloria" should be able to enjoy this masterpiece from the album with ever-famous "frog" album jacket! This is one of staples for R&B slow jam stations in the USA.


Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 3

(2012.8.1 FB posted)

Jolie - Al Kooper (1973) 
From the album "Naked Songs"

Not necessarily an "unsung gem," this moving soul ballad was made into the "Free Soul" classics during 90s, but this song is standing on its own excellence. Wailing female back chorus, the melody reminiscing the 60s memphis soul, and Al's soulful mourning vocals....


Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 4

(2012.8.1 FB posted)

Karen - Euclid Beach Band (1979) 
From the album "Euclid Beach Band"

Quintessential 70s pop by surf-pop duo from Cleveland ("There's No Surf in Cleveland"), produced by none other than Eric Carmen (you immediately notice his fingerprints all over if you hear this sound!). Not exactly a musical masterpiece, but still fun and heartwarming to listen to.


Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 5

(2012.8.4 FB posted)

Unsung Gems - 70s to Now --- Vol. 5

Say You Love Me - Patti Austin (1976) 
From the album "End Of A Rainbow"

Patti is well known for her performance with Quincy Jones, James Ingram, et al, but this breezy ballad from her debut album (she wrote most songs, including this one!) from Creed Taylor's CTI label is not really an extravaganza track, but very soothing, comforting track perfect for relaxing Saturday morning, despite its a little sad lyrics. Check out the backing musicians including Eric Gale, Steve Gadd, Randy Brecker, Richard Tee, etc., etc....


もう少し頑張って過去アップ分、catch up します。
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