Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Hiromi Ohta -- Te no Hira no Natsu （掌の夏）
(Track 1 excerpt only)
The high temperature got only as high as -13 degrees C yesterday, and so a few of us guys got together for dinner last night at the local gyudon shop in Old Chinatown where we tucked into the gigantic King Curry Platter to warm ourselves up. That was our gastronomic method,
My musical method for warming up today is with Hiromi Ohta's（太田裕美）"Te no Hira no Natsu" (Summer in the Palm of My Hand). Why this didn't get into my BEST album for Ohta I will never know, but it's nice to hear it over here. This first track for the veteran singer's 10th album in 1979, "Feelin' Summer", and for that matter, the entire album, is a continuation from her previous release recorded in Los Angeles, her 1978 "Umi ga Naiteiru"（海が泣いている...The Sea is Crying）in terms of her delving into the warm and laidback genre of City Pop. I was talking with one commenter about how in the late 1970s, there was this trend where kayo kyoku singers were exploring the planet through their releases at that time via an exotic-sounding beat. I should also mention that a number of already-established singers were simultaneously trying out City Pop through their albums.
"Umi ga Naiteiru" and "Feelin' Summer" were at least two of Ohta's contributions to the genre. As for the former album, nikala provided an article on one of the tracks, "Scarlet no Moufu"（スカーレットの毛布...Scarlet Scarf）. "Te no Hira no Natsu" is another summer-inspiring ballad with Ohta's light and warm vocals along with that sax and those horns whipping up those images of sun and sand and sea. The Kingo Hamada（浜田金吾）melody doesn't quite take things into West Coast AOR territory; there is very much a Japanese feeling that has me thinking of some of the early Anri（杏里）songs. The seasonal lyrics were provided by Etsuko Kisugi（来生えつこ）.