Yoko Kanno Week #2

Yoko Kanno feature week in progress here on E. Leventine.

In this, the second installment, we will be cherry-picking some of Kanno’s work that can best be categorized as Jazz and Blues (music scholars must forgive me for grouping these two genres together. You must know that I ultimately don’t give a care. Besides, it’s mostly jazz.)

The bulk of Kanno’s work in jazz has been written for her band The Seatbelts, and are arguably her most fan-beloved tracks. They were used as the original soundtrack for the anime series Cowboy Bebop. And I mean every song in every episode was written by Kanno. Rarely have I seen an original score so symbiotic with a movie or TV series.

And oh my god, you guys. It is SO AWESOME. Do yourself a favor and just take a minute to listen to this, even if you only listen to the intro and skip to around 0:58 when shit gets real.
Cowboy Bebop OST 1- Bad Dog No Biscuits

Just so ya’ll know, I had a really hard time narrowing down which tracks to include. But I had to include Odd Ones, the song I used to put on first thing in the morning to inspire my roomie and I to light a fire under our asses and get to school. We were nevertheless, always late.
Cowboy Bebop Vitaminless- Odd Ones

This next track is best for when you want to feel like a lone badass, wandering the post-apocalyptic wasteland. As one does.
Cowboy Bebop OST 1- Digging My Potato

And here is an example of some of Kanno’s non-Cowboy Bebop work. Still performed by the seatbelts. Not even sure what to call this, some kind of fusion surely. Benny Goodman goes to Arabia? Still though, when that percussion comes in at around the 1:15 mark, I am there with money in my hands. Just bill me, Yoko Kanno. Bill me.
Macross Plus OST II- Nomad Soul

So what do you think? Got any favorite Kanno jazz tracks not mentioned here?


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5 thoughts on “Yoko Kanno Week #2

  1. dblbasscleph says:

    Nice, that Macross one is pretty raw. I like hamduche a lot

    • E.Leventine says:

      Gorgeous, haven’t heard that one since I watched the series years back. Basscleph you’re a jazz guy, to say the least. Where would you best source the jazz genre for nomad soul?

  2. dblbasscleph says:

    Probably Jazz/World Fusion, the melody sounds like it was borrowed from some middle-eastern traditional. That soundtrack was recorded in Tel-Aviv I think but they borrowed a lot from different ethnic musics when working on the macross album (and the bebop one too I suppose).

    • E.Leventine says:

      It’s actually kind of scary how handily kanno is able to compose in any genre she wants. The more I listen to this week, the spookier it gets. I’ve been looking around for more music with that minimalist style, one instrument and a drum is so powerful.

  3. […] Kanno. If you are just joining us now, here are the first six parts so you can catch up: #1 (Intro) #2 (Jazz and Blues) #3 (Classical) #4 (Rock and Metal) #5 (Electronic and Ambient) #6 (Pop Music and […]

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