Tag / R&B

Other than being a great proponent of why we need paid maternity leave in America, Tabo’s Project’s Eyes Of A Child is a great proponent of how many hidden gems in Japan’s musical history are still left to be rediscovered. A balearic masterpiece, or walearic (if we’re being pedantic), Eyes of a Child was conceived […]

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/ September 1, 2017 / Comments Off on The Milky Way: Summertime Love Song (1979)

The Milky Way: Summertime Love Song (1979)

Pull out your surfboard, put some sangria on ice, and really enjoy this one. A surprisingly unknown masterpiece, and a rare, rare, rare one at that, of Japanese City Pop, J-AOR, or light mellow, no matter what you call The Milky Way’s Summertime Love Song, one thing you can’t say it is is uninspired. Released […]

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/ August 9, 2017 / Comments Off on Katsutoshi Morizono: 4:17 p.m. (1985)

Katsutoshi Morizono: 4:17 p.m. (1985)

There’s an appeal to Katsutoshi Morizono’s 4:17 p.m. that can only be heightened, or fully appreciated, during summer, our current time of the year. Cycling from truly elegant compositions – a frequent, recurring theme lately on the blog – 4:17 p.m. mixes jazz fusion, post-bossanova, reggae, light mellow/City Pop, and even experimental bits of New Age […]

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/ July 21, 2017 / Comments Off on Mike Francis: Let’s Not Talk About It (1984)

Mike Francis: Let’s Not Talk About It (1984)

Now this, this right here, is the promised boogie wonderland. The late Michele Francesco Puccioni’s (aka Mike Francis) 1984 debut is that unheralded statement piece of funk and R&B music that once you have your chance to get your hands on you’ll never forget. Let’s Not Talk About It was the product of some hard-earned […]

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Power can manifest itself in many ways. Power isn’t always in the density of something but in the lightness of it. Kenji Omura’s spirited take on funk, sophisticated pop, and so many other smooth genres comes together into one powerful album: Gaijin Heaven. The late, great Kenji Omura, one time or some time YMO guitarist, […]

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/ March 6, 2017 / Comments Off on Marju Kuut & Uku Kuut: Zuke (1992)

Marju Kuut & Uku Kuut: Zuke (1992)

Funk can sometimes come from the unlikeliest of places. Take for example: Hollywood. Hollywood, and America’s West Coast one could argue, has always been a haven for all sorts of groove maestros…but Tallinn, Estonia? Estonia, that’s where the creators of Zuke hail from. From an ex-Soviet country that barely has a record industry one would be hard-pressed to […]

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/ February 10, 2017 / Comments Off on Melon: Do You Like Japan? (1982)

Melon: Do You Like Japan? (1982)

assively influenced by American R&B, Do You Like Japan? holds that rare thing for us as listeners: it’s a question posed in the title. Was ex-Plastics frontman Toshio Nakanishi asking us if we liked Japan or was he asking himself that same question? The answer would be hard to tell after you listen to the album. Created after his breakup […]

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/ December 12, 2016 / Comments Off on Akira Terao: Atmosphere (1983)

Akira Terao: Atmosphere (1983)

It’s not often you hear someone split the difference between Boz Scaggs, Bryan Ferry, and Nick Cave. It’s not often that you find quite a character like Yokohama-native Akira Terao, and music quite like Atmosphere. Before Mark Hollis discovered Coltrane, before Paul Buchanan decided to soundtrack the sight of Glasgow at 4 a.m., in the year that […]

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/ October 17, 2016 / Comments Off on John Klemmer: Barefoot Ballet (1976)

John Klemmer: Barefoot Ballet (1976)

  There’s smooth jazz, then there’s: Smooth Jazz. Chicago-native, and Art Institute alumnus, John Klemmer, thankfully, belongs to that of the latter kind. In the ’70s, he was primarily known as the go-to sax session man for all sorts of Rock and Pop musicians looking to dip their toes into a jazzy sound. What set John apart from most […]

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/ July 4, 2014 / Comments Off on (World Cup Edition) Marvin Gaye: Star Spangled Banner (1814)

(World Cup Edition) Marvin Gaye: Star Spangled Banner (1814)

I take a break today to celebrate the greatest country I live in…the one and only United States of America. Quite possibly the best cover ever, Marvin Gaye’s re-imagining of Francis Scott Keys’ original work. Y’all know the story of America and this song, if not read a book, or visit wikipedia. Stay safe, light […]

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