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Monday, March 25, 2019

Tokyo Rhapsody - Vicente Gomez

Blue Kimono
Tokyo Rhapsody
Vicente Gomez
Guitar Solos with Accompaniment
Directed by Charles Bud Dant
Decca DL 74948
Decca Records, A Division of MCA, Inc., New York, N.Y.

From the back cover: The setting is Japan. The music is Japanese. The instrument is pure Spanish – the classical guitar of Spain! This unorthodox combination of music from the Orient performed on an instrument traditionally associated with the Latin countries might well have failed in the hands of a lesser artist than Vicente Gomez. In his case, however, it reveals itself to be an exciting and unusual experience.

Throughout the years, the great skill and sensitivity of this dedicated artist have resulted in many outstanding contributions to the world of recorded music, and Tokyo Rhapsody, which features his magnificent guitar-playing in adaptations of popular Japanese melodies, must be regarded as yet another important musical milestone in his career. As an inspired performer and arranger, he remains topflight in his category.

Senor Gomez explains that what he has done is really not so difficult and really need not be considered as so unusual, for the guitar is by nature a most suitable choice for adaptation. A polyphonic instrument, it can produce many varying sounds and subtle effects when handled with skill. And the great skill of Vicente Gomez in handling the guitar is, of course, a long-established fact. The enormous popularity of the guitar in Japan, through, is a more recent phenomenon. The very warm reception accorded Vicente Gomez everywhere in Japan is evidence of the universal appeal of good music, which transcends the barriers of differing customs and wide geographical distance, where East happily meets West in our rapidly shrinking world

The collection of songs in this album reflect the very essence of the Orient. Here is music of great clarity, grace and charm, music that falls as gently on the ears as cherry blossoms softly scattered about in a quiet Japanese garden. Typically Oriental in purity of form and subtlety of expression, each delicate melody stands in pristine beauty like a dainty statuette carved in jade, perfect in every detail. Yet beneath it there flows a current that is warm and vibrant and unmistakably Spanish. It would be hard to find a more unpredictable yet completely successful combination.

To enjoy this music to the fullest, all you need do is free yourself of the notion that Oriental music is something austere and intractable or that the Spanish classical guitar is suited solely to the familiar musical patterns we associate with it. Freed of these restrictions, you'll discover a new musical world – fresh, inventive and infinitely satisfying. So we ask only that your kindly observe an old Japanese custom: remove your shoes at the door and follow us joyfully and expectantly into a delightful and fragrant room filled with the exquisite pleasures of pure musical enjoyment! – Judith Tase

The Nearness Of Your Shadow
Tokyo Rhapsody
So Young, So Alone
Blue Kimono
Green Horizon
Home Is Where The Heart Is
My Sake, My Tears
Tokyo Girl
Life Is A Blue-Green Lake
the Dear Days Of Youth
Sweet Memories
Walk Over The Bridge

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