Yutaka feat Patti Austin – Love Light

yutakaMight to say, this tune is one of my lost treasure which has been returned after nearly forty years. I purchased this album on cassette in early 80s without know who Yutaka Yokokura was, but I certain it was so Grusin. The mere mention of smooth jazz activates the gag reflexes in many, also it containing some oriental elements probably to increase willingness to listen. “Love Light” was a corny duet Yutaka himself & Patti Austin which was a typical Jazzy tune circa 1978 that well accepted, and reach #81 on Billboard Hot 100. Yutaka previously recorded “Love Light” in 1978 with complete rejection by Japanese buyers. He decided to test American market starting on the West Coast, soon it began getting substantial airplay in Los Angeles and spread across the continent. Dave Grusin not only involved on the sessions of this Japanese album, he and GRP also recorded next three albums of Yutaka. It’s been a cherished part of my nostalgia collection when some of the biggest names in smooth jazz were coming of age. He has an exotic sound on the “koto” that is just what you’d expect from the glory days of the GRP label back in 88s. Obviously a highly-rated album among fans of the Jazzy-tunes, likely to be viewed as a collector’s item status. BTW, don’t ask the girl’s name on this clip ;o) 

Lagu Love Light menggiringku ke masa jaya Jazzy-tunes, berkisar sejak 40an tahun lalu. Minatku mulai beralih dari koleksi Led Zeppelin dan Queen, terperangah mendengar On Broadway-nya George Benson, Birdland milik Manhattan Transfer, terutama Spain versi Al Jarreau serta Mountain Dance khas Dave Grusin di awal 80an. Kemudian nemu kaset yg kukira album baru Dave Grusin. Unik karena suara Koto atau harpa Jepang, plus duet vokal Patti Austin yg kelak berkibar lewat “Razzamatazz”. Selanjutnya tiap album Yukata jadi koleksi eksotisku bareng Kazu Matsui dan John Kaizan Neptune, keduanya pendekar “Shakuhachi”, dan -tentu saja- Casiopea. Love Light merupakan produk awal Yutaka yg sempat direkam di Jepang tahun 1978, tapi gagal. Ia hijrah ke pantai Barat Amerika atas ajakan Dave Grusin lalu merilis ulang albumnya, ternyata sukses dan masuk Billboard Hot 100. Sekaligus penanda kebangkitan musik Jazz bersama sindikasi aliran West Coast yg kelak melahirkan GRP. Dan seterusnya .. biar sejarah yg bicara. (dionisius endy)

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