11 May 2012

The search for Bob's Fish Market

I have scoured the 'nets for years trying to find further recordings of the Japanese band Bob's Fish Market of the late 70s. The only place I found anything besides seafood listings was a vinyl record catalog of sorts online. But it only has 1 album and it is the album I encountered while in college.

Now a flashback.

I was an aspiring thespian (who are often pains, too!) at a small college in a rural land. In my first term, I did not take Intro to Theater-like most with theatrical aspirations would take. In fact I sort of skipped it, but that is another tale. In 2nd term I  enrolled in Stagecraft. It sounded a little more serious. Behind the scenes it was often called "tools for fools," since there were whole units dedicated to tools used to build props and scenery. One of the requirements for the class involved working weekly in the scene shop. However, by some means I found myself also volunteered to design sound effects for the upcoming winter production of 2 contemporary Japanese plays by Shimizu Kunio. I had never done anything of the sort in my life-well not officially, I played with sound effects albums I would get at the public library when I was younger.
I spent quite a few hours up in the theater control room listening to and recording sound effects.
I was also tasked with compiling the the pre and post-show music. For this undertaking, the director Dr. L_, provided a pile of Japanese recordings on vinyl. Most were of the traditional sounds- the kind of music you would expect to hear if you were at Japanese restaurant. The only exception, I believe, was the eponymous disc- Bob's Fish Market. Listening to the album was a journey of sorts- to the 70s and to contemporary Japanese culture at the time. I recall it had a kind of beautiful music sound coupled reggae and jazz.
Since that time, Bob's Fish Market has been an obscure musical memory which I revisit from time to time. Perhaps their recordings have made it online-but I have yet to find them. They may be in that maelstrom of Japanese language websites I have not found.
However, I now delve into the depths of the Japanese web. Sure enough I hit gold. And Bob's Fish Market is decidely sound more harder than I recall.

And with the somewhat flaky translation program that Google and Bing provide, it appears they are still kicking it old school. Here's the reunion video.


There might be more out there but trying to decifer the Japanese is a bit difficult.

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