(A few months ago I had wanted to do with an all-Japanese month of music downloads — I started with Merzbow, and failed to follow up — and now here’s the continuation.)
Grown-ups don’t have to dislike music for kiddies, and kiddies don’t have to dislike music for grown-ups. There’s Dan Zanes (to whose concert I took Izzy last month), whose albums are infectious slices of Americana; Lisa Loeb and Elizabeth Mitchell (from Ida) also have an album of mostly nursery rhymes and lullabies. (An old grad school housemate of mine used to date Liz, I think, so that’s only a few degrees of separation there!)
But don’t get me started on those cut-rate albums where random kids are assembled in a studio and made to sing nursery rhymes — or worse, sanitized renditions of pop hits. I once heard this awful version of “Hey Ya!” with all the “Lucy Liu” references removed…
Izzy, in turn, likes the Beatles and the two Elvises (Presley and Costello); her very first concert was Gillian Welch, although she really only got into it when David Rawlings did a cover of “Big Rock Candy Mountain.”
But back to the subject at hand: Izzy really likes the Japanese singing duo Puffy, and the fact that neither one of us understands a word doesn’t stop her from jumping up and down. Okay, me neither.
“LONG BEACH NIGHTMARE,” from the 2003 album NICE., is a prototypical Puffy song (thanks here to Andy Sturmer, “Godfather of Puffy”) and though this one doesn’t utilize the usual “homages” — generally, a “Day Tripper” riff here, the introduction to “Baba O’Riley” there — it’s still full of creamy pop goodness: oooohs, handclaps, girly voices singing in unison. In other words, perfect.
Hear it (4.7 mb, 192 kbps .m4a).