Thursday, September 13, 2007

Splotchy's Contribution To No Speak English

Here's a discussion of my selections for No Speak Englsh, Volume 5 of the Green Monkey Music Project.

Lassie Singers - Hamburg [German]
Back before the kiddies, when I had cash burning a hole in my pocket, I'd periodically check eBay for obscure Feelies or Luna releases. I would also search for out-of-print books by Italian author Italo Svevo. One of my searches for this author brought back a CD compilation of German artists, Sturm Und Twang! - A Private Collection Of German Underground Pop (one of the artists on the disc went by the name of Svevo). No one had bid on it, and it sounded interesting. I had a variety of German artists in my music library -- Faust, Kraftwerk, etc., but hadn't heard any of these bands. So I placed my $5.00 bid, and soon after I had the CD in my sweaty hands. This song by the Lassie Singers is my favorite of the bunch. I do believe at least one English word is sung in this song, and it's a dirty one!

Gilberto Gil - Sai Do Sereno [Portuguese]
From the wonderful album Expresso 2222. I love the melody, love the drumming, the guitar. It's just a really nice song off a really nice album.

Pugh Rogefeldt - Små Lätta Moln [Swedish]
This guy is Swedish. It was by pure luck I stumbled across his music. As you can see from his official website, he's not necessarily interested in cultivating an English-speaking audience. A lot of his songs are rocking and rolling, but I prefer the softer side of Pugh. You might be a little startled by his use of falsetto in this song, but it works for me. From The Pugh Box, a collection of songs spanning his career.

Michel Polnareff - Le Desert N'est Plus En Afrique [French]
I first heard a song by Mr. Polnareff on Pop Romantique, where Luna covered a song of his (you can hear it for yourself in the Total Absorption mix). This is from the album Polnareff's. I was going back and forth whether to have a song by Polnareff or Françoise Hardy, but this particular song just felt right. I will include a picture of Ms. Hardy, though.


Faust - Psalter [French?]
This German band often produces skronky, dissonant music. This is one of their gentler songs, and it's very beautiful. Taken from 71 Minutes Of... These guys sing in German and English, but this song sounds French to me.

Boubacar Traoré - Samba [Bambara]
A wonderful African guitarist and vocalist. Just him and his guitar, but very powerful. From his album Macire.

Tom Zé - Ui! (Voce Inventa) [Portuguese]
I love me some Tom Zé. His stuff is often a little wacky, with interesting instrumentation. This song is a little calmer, and it is just plain wonderful. From Estudando o Samba.

Ohio Express - Yummy Yummy Yummy [Italian]
I had to throw this one on. I went through a pretty severe 60's bubblegum period, where I had to snap up anything yummy. This song is off some weird CD I got over the Internet, that was apparently put together in Australia. Occasionally artists record foreign language versions of their songs (ABBA, Kraftwerk, etc.) so this is my representative track.


dguzman said...

That Francoise Hardy is yummy yummy yummy.

Dale said...

Lassie never sounded so dirty! haha.

My sister had some Ohio Express albums when I was a kid and hearing YYY in Italian was pretty funny, actually in English it's pretty funny too isn't it?

Speaking of Africa, have you heard any Ali Farka Toure? Another blogger, Mellowlee, fired some of his songs at me once and he did an album with Ry Cooder, some brilliant stuff although Ali's no longer with us.

Excellent tunes.

Splotchy said...

dguzman, indeed!

dale, yeah, YYY is funny no matter what language it is sung in.

I think I have some Ali Farka Toure in my possession, but have not listened to a lot of it. I'm planning on flushing out my MP3 player soon -- I'll load some of his stuff and check it out.