I consider myself eclectic in taste when it comes to music but I will say that Jazz holds a very special place in this little heart of mine. Especially the amplified sounds of Acid Jazz, Jazzfunk, Jazz Fusion and Ghoema (I am, after all, a child of the Cape). One could probably say that my heart beats Jazz.
Growing up we used to record our music from the radio – rewind, record then pause before the dj speaks. My friends only did R&B, you see. There was the odd one who was into the likes of Skunk Anansie and another was West Side one day and East Side the next. I just loved them all. I was like one who was in Dire Straits for Bread feeling the Earth, Wind and Fire – just me, Kool and the Gang looking at the Bloodstone wrung out by The Carpenters. We were all about the latest club hits. Yet, in our home, we listened to anything from classic 70’s and 80’s hard rock to just plain classic. Ain’t no shame in my Tchaikovsky game.
Thinking back now there was one song that threw me into Jazz Music – Jonathan Butler’s 7th Avenue. To this day it remains one of my favourites and is just one of those songs that has a permanent spot on my playlist. It’s not just that the song is great but, man, what a story!
I come from a family who LOVES music. Our homes are rarely silent. Because of this I have two uncles who influenced my intense love for music greatly. Some of my earliest memories are of them playing Lisa Stansfield from one room and Sade from the other right next door. And a cousin pumping Michael Jackson. All this in one house. These two uncles introduced me to Acid Jazz. I fell instantly in love with Incognito. That yellow and black album – aptly named “Positivity” – had me hooked from the first note. In my opinion they are one of the greatest exports from the UK. Maysa Leak is a such a classy vocalist (she’s since gone off on her own). Whether it’s vocal or instrumental, they’re simply awesome.
But I think there is a band that stands out above all the rest. The tightest band ever (in my humble opinion). There is no other band that keeps it together like Casiopea. If one considers that Casio is a timepiece manufacturer and the name is derivative of time and space (constellation of stars Cassiopeia) then their name suits their style and ability perfectly. I can listen to their distinct sound for hours. It’s also so much fun watching their videos because they clearly enjoyed making music for the masses. I don’t think Japan has produced another band quite like them since. True class. Here is the video for Asayake and Fightman below that. Enjoy.
Well. that is my mouthful about music that takes me through my paces emotionally and, somehow, intellectually (I work better with a bit of jazz and 90’s alternative rock in the background).
What is your genre of choice? I’d like to know. Perhaps you know of some bands I could check out? I’m always up for new music (even though everything I listed here is now considered old school). Let me know your thoughts.