I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Yellow Magic Orchestra -- Mad Pierrot

This is a special follow-up here. In the last half hour, I heard from CNN that one of my comedic heroes and inspirations, Robin Williams, had suddenly passed away today at the age of 63. Usually when news of a favourite celeb going over to the other side breaks on TV, I grimace sadly and sigh. Tonight, my jaw dropped and hit the carpet.

I've already mentioned about Yellow Magic Orchestra's "Mad Pierrot" when I wrote about the technopop band's first album back in March 2012. But I've decided to feature it here since the title reflects how I saw Robin Williams. Back in my high school days, his appearances on the American late-night talk shows were absolute must-sees. None of us could expect what he would do on the show: dance on the host's desk, crack his head on the TV camera, run into the audience. But all of us would know he would have us laughing up our internal organs and then talking about him the next day.

The title for YMO's underrated "Mad Pierrot" had been derived from the 1965 French film, "Pierrot le Fou" (Pierrot The Madman), and apparently the song was so difficult to perform live, the band decided to stop doing so, although I can't imagine that they've completely given up on it in concert. Haruomi Hosono (細野晴臣)was responsible for the creation of this thrilling early entry in their discography with a refrain that sounded like it was the theme song for something that Williams would do on stage followed by a sneaky percolating beat which could describe his quicksilver mind coming up with some sort of unbelievable example of improvisation.

I leave you with the above video of one of his guest appearances on "The Tonight Show".

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