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Nippon Girls: Japanese Pop, Beat & Bossa Nova 1966-1970
The Big Beat International label returns with a bang and another celebration of the wonderful world of Japanese 60s pop. After our acclaimed GS I Love You volumes, it's the girls turn, as we examine the distaff side of the... more »
The Big Beat International label returns with a bang and another celebration of the wonderful world of Japanese 60s pop. After our acclaimed GS I Love You volumes, it's the girls turn, as we examine the distaff side of the country's remarkable GS pop scene with Nippon Girls.The likes of Shonen Knife and The 5-6-7-8s have given more face to women in Japanese pop, but they draw on a tradition that stretches back to the wild 1960s 'Group Sounds' era, when the Land Of the Rising Sun was smitten with westernized rock 'n' roll, yet came to develop its own distinctive brand of the same. Like in the west, female artistes tended to be solo, though their accompaniment often came from some of the top GS acts like the Bunnies. Major female stars of the period represented here include Miki Obata, Linda Yamamoto and Mie Nakao, the latter with the fuzztoned classic Sharock No 1.The sound was eclectic, drawing upon not only the full smorgasbord of 60s styles like groovy go-go, lounge-y bossa nova and wobbly pop-psych, but also traditional Japanese songwriting and themes. There's dance floor fillers such as Ye-Ye and the usual fascinating interpretations of western material, such as Nana Kanomi's take on the Zombies' I Love You.Nippon Girls is annotated by noted girl group expert and latter-day Japanese pop champion Sheila Burgel of Cha Cha Charming magazine, who provides a fascinating overview of this tremendous and compelling tributary of 60s pop. Highly recommended to girl group fanciers, GS groovers and any one else with a keen ear for eclectic 60s pop.
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Sixties J-Pop Genius
David Smay | San Francisco, California | 07/14/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is one of the best sixties girl singer compilations I've ever heard, (and I own a lot) hand picked by Cha Cha Charming's own Sheila Burgel. This stuff is super groovy though it covers a wide range of styles. Only a couple tracks are in the Bossa Nova vein, most of them are uptempo and very mod girl singer raveups. There's fuzz guitar, there's a track by Emy Jackson "Tenshi No Itazura" that even has a bit of Les Yper Sound to it. My favorite is probably "Black Room" by Jun Mayuzumi" which is absolutely electric. "Sharock No. 1" by Mie Nakao contrasts heavy fuzz guitars against sassy girl vocals (drenched in reverb). If you're a fan of the recent spate of Pinky Violence movies (Japanese early 70s exploitation) "Taiyou Na Waite Iru" sounds very similar to the haunting theme songs of films like "Stray Cat Rock." Some tracks emulate bouncy French Ye-Ye, others are more in the style of sixties soul, some play like some go-go interlude from Shindig. But every song has something distinctive and interesting to recommend it.
Great pictures and notes in the interior by Sheila.
This is what a great compilation should do: introduce you to an entirely new world of fantastic music.
David Smay, co-editor of Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth and Lost in the Grooves: Scram's Capricious Guide to the Music You Missed."