Let's head off to Margueritaville! That's the feeling I get when I listen to the following soother of a song.
There's a bit of a Doobie Bros. vibe when I hear "Hoshikuzu" (Stardust) by the 1970s band Makoto Kubota to Yuyake Gakudan（久保田麻琴と夕焼け楽団...Makoto Kubota & The Sunset Band）, but it's even more wonderfully mellow. The vocals by Kubota and the softly, softly delivery by the other instruments easily make it hammock time on the beach. It may be anything but summery right now (we've got a wind chill of -19 degrees C tonight!) but it's nice to dream of the warm days again.
"Hoshikuzu" is a track on the band's 2nd album "Dixie Fever" from 1977. Kubota and his Yuyake Gakudan released 5 albums between 1975 and 1981, and they were a group that focused on hippie culture, Hawaiian and Okinawan sounds.
However, the Kyoto-born and Ishikawa Prefecture-raised Kubota started his career in 1970 while he was a student at Doshisha University when he not only debuted his solo song but also participated as a member of the avant-garde band Hadaka no Rallizes（裸のラリーズ...Les Rallizes Dénudés）. Later on, he would take a year off university and head over to the States after which he released his first album "Machibouke"（まちぼうけ...Waiting in Vain）in 1972 with the help of producer Masataka Matsutoya（松任谷正隆）.
Near the end of the Yuyake Gakudan's run, he would bring in Aya "Sandii" Suzuki（鈴木あや）to become the main vocalist. The band itself would change its name to Sunsetz at the beginning of the 1980s and then finally to Sandii & The Sunsetz.