Friday, May 27, 2011

Y is for Yaz

It's been such a terribly busy week that I haven't had too much time to post anything other than my "Song of the Day," and though I do have other catching up to do, I wanted to take this opportunity to get a leg up on the Z-A Blogger's Challenge. So far, I've only done "Z," and the rest of the pack is somewhere around "E" or even "D" by now, but whatever. I'll get to it in my own time. As I said earlier, this Z-A Challenge, for me, will center around the subject of music, and I actually had to pen a piece for Y!CN before I could do "Y."

Y is for Yaz

Yaz, or Yazoo as they were called in the UK, was a very short-lived new wave duo back in the early 1980's and though they were only around for two years or so, they definitely left their mark. I remember this Puerto Rican kid I went to Fordham University with. His name was Ritchie Rodriguez and he was one of my best friends during my time at Fordham. Anyway, Ritchie was heavy into music, especially new wave music which was just beginning to blossom back in 1982-83. He turned me on to Culture Club and Yaz, two groups that definitely hold a lot of memories for me.

Yaz had an album called 'Upstairs at Eric's,' which was absolutely epic. The album was very new wave, with lots of synthesizers n' such, but all of the songs were very well written and just awesome. I even got Joe to love them during our time together, the music was so good.

The duo consisted of writer/keyboardist Vince Clark, formerly of Depeche Mode and afterwards Erasure, and powerhouse soul singer Alyson Moyet. Alyson was sort of like an Adele of her time, with that British soul and powerful pipes. The combination of well-written songs and her fantastic vocals was simply classic.

You probably already know the song 'Situation,' which has been sampled many times over, and maybe even their other club hit, the fast and furious 'Don't Go.' There aren't too many videos for their songs, and I want to share a couple of my favorites, so I'm going to place a combination of vids and audio for you to check out. The first one is actually off of the band's second and final album, 'You and Me Both,' and I absolutely love the almost rap-like in your face vocals by Alyson. I couldn't find the original audio version of this song, and of course the live version doesn't do it justice, but check it out:

Don't mind me honey I'm just looking
I'm just looking
Smelt your chicken
And I watched you cooking
Souped up, jacked up, cracked up, stacked up
You're a bad stain
And you need to be cleaned up

State Farm - The Best of Yaz

Here's my absolute heartfelt and authentic. This one still gives me goosebumps when I hear it. Check out 'Midnight':

Midnight, it's raining outside
He must be soaking wet
Everyone is sleeping tight
God knows I've tried my best, but
Darling you know it looks bad
Just lost the best thing that I ever had
Still I don't know why I did him wrong
it's too late now he's gone to say

I said baby, ooh no,
Can't leave me now, say
So think about me please
Cause I love you'
And I need you
And I should have thought about that
Before I did you wrong

Finally, here's 'Don't Go,' a fast moving club song that hit #1 on Billboard's Hot Dance charts back in 1982:

Living for the city Walked into the door
I turned around when I heard the sound of footsteps on the floor
Love just like addiction now Im hooked on you
I need some time to get it right
Your love gonna see me through

Pick up 'Upstairs at Eric's' below:
Upstairs At Eric's - Yaz

I published a full review of the album, which you can see by clicking the picture below...

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