Apr 1, 2011

Pesto Paakin Mama

Yesterday I was listening to Seijin Noborikawa's (登川誠仁) CD "Howling Wolf" on my way to my office.

Seijin Noborikawa, known as Seigua(誠小), is one of the most famous Shimauta(島唄), Okinawan folk songs, singers. His voice is truly soulful, grooving and bitter. He himself is a master of Shimauta, but not at all a snob.

In this CD "Howling Wolf" Seigua sung the song called "Pesto Paakin Mama(ペストパーキンママ)".

After World War 2, the US army had occupied Okinawa for 27 years. When he was a child, he was a houseboy of a US soldier, who was stationed in Okinawa.

At that time he was used to listening to American music. He couldn't speak English, but he remembered many songs just through his own ears. He didn't know the meaning of the lyrics at all, but he had sung these songs with a Sanshin(三線), which is a traditional Okinawan instrument like Ukurere.

"Pesto Paakin Mama" is one of such songs. He sang this song happily in fake English.

Of course this is a kind of comic song, and I can"t stop laughing out when I listen to this song. But at the same time I'm deeply moved by this song thinking of the struggle of Okinawan people against World War 2 and the occupation by US army. They had a hard time, but they are so tough that they have never forgotten their humor.

"Pesuto Paakin Mama" sung by Seigua and Terurin

"Pistol Packin' Mamma", which is the original song of "Pesuto Paakin Mama", sung by Bing Crosby and The Andrew Sisters

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