SUNS OF ASIA

June 11, 2013 – 4:43 am

There’s more to Asia than Gungnam Style.

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

YOUN SUN NAH & ULF WAKENIUS
“Women of The World” Festival 2013 [no label, 1CD]

Live at hr-Studio II, Frankfurt/Main, Germany; April 8, 2013. Broadcast on German radio station “hr2″ (via SkyStar 2) on May 30, 2013. Ex stereo.

While Girls Generation, Super Junior and the other bands managed by SM Entertainment, the giant Korean artist management team, were eyeing the teen market with regular K-pop tours to the USA, Asia and Australia, Gungnam Style shook their worldview, scattering her artistic community like ten pins.

PSY’s success has forced the pace for English-language releases by Korean artists. Girls Generation are reported in The Guardian UK to be readying such an album for release in 2013. Universal label, Interscope, are said to be their English-language label. But long before PSY, a tiny number of Korean artists had already staked their claim as serious musicians in the international music scene.

Jazz singer and interpreter Youn Sun Nah has already released her English-language album, Lento, in April. This concert in Germany was to promote Lento. Her partner is Swedish guitarist Ulf Wakenius. Wakenius earned his jazz chops playing with the Oscar Peterson Quartet and the Ray Brown Trio.

The best track to sample Sun Nah’s great vocal range is on Momento Magico. She scats, wails, holds high notes for a length of time and shows what great lungs she has. The material here also shows her affectionate, emotional side. Trent (Nine Inch Nails) Reznor’s drug song, Hurt, is here. The Broadway standard, My Favourite Things, is sung as a bittersweet ode to the past. She also does Randy Newman and Tom Waits to show her breadth and handles that old Western, Ghost Riders In The Sky. The Korean folk song, Arirang, is the only song that informs listeners she is Korean. Arirang is the informal national anthem of Korea and is about a journey to cross a mountain pass which results in leaving a loved one behind.

Youn has taken that long and winding road to fame. She is already 43.

Thanks to duckberry for sharing the show at Dime.
- The Little Chicken

Picture by Sung Yull Nah, posted at www.younsunnah.com.

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (224 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Please Do Not Hammer The Links. Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. The tracks should still be around. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Track 01. Hurt (Trent Reznor) 5:52 * (9.9MB)
Track 02. YSN announces next song 0:54 (1.5MB)
Track 03. Momento Magico (Ulf Wakenius) 6:30 * (10.9MB)
Track 04. My Favorite Things (Richard Rodgers/Oscar Hammerstein II) 4:19 (7.3MB)
Track 05. Soundless Bye (Youn Sun Nah) 4:56 * (8.3MB)
Track 06. Lament (Youn Sun Nah) 3:21 * (5.7MB)
Track 07. “Are there any Koreans here tonight?” 1:11 (2.0MB)
Track 08. Arirang (Korean trad.) 7:34 * (12.7MB)
Track 09. Jockey Full of Bourbon (Tom Waits) 7:24 (12.4MB)
Track 10. Same Girl (Randy Newman) 3:57 (6.7MB)
Track 11. Ghost Riders in the Sky (Stan Jones) 3:02 * (5.1MB)
49 mins

* These songs are found in studio versions on her latest album, Lento.

Lineup:
Youn Sun Nah - vocals, kalimba (# 04)
Ulf Wakenius - guitar

Youn Sun Nah’s latest album is Lento, released in March 2013. It is an English language album. She has been making albums since 2001. Buy the CD here or buy a digital download here.

Also recommended is Ulf Wakenius’ 2CD anthology, Signature Edition 2, released in 2012 in Germany. It has many friends guesting including Lars Danielsson, Til Bronner, Jack DeJohnette, Randy Brecker and Sun Nah. Buy it here.

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