Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Yukihiro Takahashi


Yukihiro Takahashi – “Boys Will Be Boys”

Yukihiro Takahashi’s “Boys Will be Boys” – Live 1983. By the time home video rolled down the pike, I already knew to wait a bit. My first home video recorder was a Sony SL-5200 Beta hi-fi – I knew how to order it so as soon as this videocassette was offered for sale in Japan, I ordered one – must’ve cost in the neighborhood of $100 or so. But…but…almost an hour of Y.M.O.’s vocalist – live – with a “dream band”!

The songs: Ripple; My Bright Tomorrow; Kagerou; Ark Diamant; Sayonara; Flashback; The Real You; Are You Receiving Me?; It’s All Too Much (the George Harrison / Beatles song!); It’s Gonna Work Out; Cue (the Y.M.O. song); The April Fools. The band: Yukihiro Takahashi (Y.M.O.), Keiichi Suzuki (Moonriders), Hajime Tachibana (Plastics), Bill Nelson (Be-Bop Deluxe) and David Palmer (ABC) with special guest Haruomi Hosono (Y.M.O.)

The good news: the live show is great, lots of fun – and in support of an album that I really love: “What Me Worry” by Yukihiro Takahashi. The bad news: it’s in mono. That ordinarily wouldn’t have bothered me at all, but…I had just spent hundreds of dollars buying a stereo hi-fi videocassette machine, and – damn it – I wanted stereo! But I guess this video was one turn of the wheel before stereo Beta hi-fi walked proudly through the streets of Akihabara. Absolutely every other Y.M.O. (& family) videocassette is stereo (but not all of them were hi-fi, fans!).

Needless to say, I am looking at my music videos a lot these days – trying to dub as much as possible to DVD-R before the Sony shlf-2100 SuperBeta hi-fi breathes it’s last breath. And – nightmares confirmed – I have already had one essential tape not play all the way through – “The All Star Video” by Ryuichi Sakamoto / Nam Jun Paik. Tears! I got about 6 minutes into the dub (I even sat and was watching ti as it dubbed) – and the head clogged, dropping synch. I cleaned the head on the beta, but…no go, it won’t dub cleanly. So, scrap heap. Can’t do anything with it – the beta version of “laser rot”.

I guess that is why I’m really trying to take a look at everything now, in my music video universe. What’s unusable? What am I done with? What would my friends like to see? I have hundreds of cartons of music videos in my garage – and not all of them are MuchMusic air-checks! I have lots of lots of factory-made stereo hi-fi tapes that positively do not exist as DVD’s (in the US, anyway). I bet I can replace “The All Star Video” on my next visit to Japan, as an AC:2 DVD – but how expensive will it be? (I’m dreaming now: will it be part of a Sakamoto DVD box or a Nam Jun Paik DVD box?)

Back to Yukihiro Takahashi: I have at least 2 other great stereo Hi-fi betas by Takahashi-san: “A Fragment” – a collection of5 great music videos – “Walking To The Beat”, “Something In The Air” (no, not the Thunderclap Newman song), “Drip Dry Eyes”, “Poisson D’Avril” and “Brand New Day” – also in the rack: can’t read the title, but it’s a live cassette of probably the ’84 Y.T. tour, with Iva Davies replacing Bill Nelson.

No comments: