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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.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Ego-Wrappin' -- Paranoia


Man, Yoshie Nakano's(中納良恵)voice can be the equivalent of a 1940s comedy-crime caper. The way she can just dive into "Paranoia" and scat all over the place at one moment while going into sultry vamp mode at another moment.

"Paranoia" is another jazz track from the 2nd album by jazz unit Ego-Wrappin', "Michishio no Romance"(満ち汐のロマンス...Tide Flow Romance)from 2001, and the first album that I got by the Osaka-based duo of Nakano and Masaki Mori(森雅樹). I've always wondered about how some of the tracks have been named weirdly after psychology terms; there is the chaotically fun "Psychoanalysis" which was the very first Ego-Wrappin' song that I covered in the blog, and another song elsewhere by them labeled "Nervous Breakdown". I can only gather that Nakano and Mori were emulating the old tradition of some of the old jazz masters from America giving just-as-weird titles to some of their masterpieces such as "Salt Peanuts" and "Stereophonic".


In any case, when I first listened to "Paranoia" and some of the other tracks by Ego-Wrappin' on "Michishio no Romance", I had thought some of them were covers of somewhat more obscure jazz songs by American artists. However, I was impressed to find out that all of the tracks were written and composed by Mori and Nakano

And "Paranoia" has that frenetically chuggy beat as if the song was melodically illustrating a traveling jazz band in the 1920s or 1930s moving from city to city, from low-paying gig to low-paying gig all over the Midwest as the members come across their various trials and tribulations on their sputtering bus. There's even some hint of Latin mixed in with some of that ragtime; maybe there's a whole bunch of jazz stuff that I have yet to pick up on. But it's all good to me.



For quite a few years, I was very interested in the different forms of jazz when I was in Japan, so I did pick up a number of albums which included a couple of the songs that I have already mentioned. So to finish off, here is "Salt Peanuts" by Dizzy Gillespie.

And here is the really cool "Stereophonic" by Count Basie. If I want to get pumped up by jazz, this is the song for me.


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