Technicolor Paradise: Rhum Rhapsodies & Other Exotic Delights

Technicolor Paradise: Rhum Rhapsodies & Other Exotic Delights


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Exotica defined a place in time, but only a handful of artists defined it. Martin Denny coined the term in 1957 when he called an album Exotica but at that point, the fad was well underway, kicked off at the dawn of the '50s by Les Baxter, who released his own groundbreaking album, Ritual of the Savage, in addition to producing and arranging Voice of the Xtabay, the 1950 debut by Yma Sumac. What all these records had in common was a fascination with the island culture of the Pacific Ocean -- specifically the island of Hawaii, which had yet to become an American state when exotica was all the rage in the '50s. Eventually, Hawaii entered the union and the South Pacific craze waned, but exotica lingered into the '60s, only to resurface during the '90s as the anchor of the lounge revival. Technicolor Paradise: Rhum Rhapsodies & Other Exotic Delights, Numero's deep dive into exotica, appeared in 2018, 20 years after the '90s lounge craze peaked, which means it could be seen as the revival or a revival, but that's not quite right. While Technicolor Paradise does contain its fair share of camp -- camp is baked into the genre -- Numero never winks at its audience with this triple-disc set. It's accompanied by a hefty hardcover book, tracing all of the highways and byways of exotica's history, while detailing the artists who feature on this 54-track box. None of the genre's heavy hitters are here, but that's the point of the whole enterprise: Technicolor Paradise is designed to show how deeply exotica spread in the '50s and earliest years of the '60s. The people behind the set -- chiefly Ken Shipley, who was assisted by Daniel Shiman on the research and compilation side and Rob Sevier on the production end -- achieve this goal by concentrating largely (but not entirely) on acts who recorded for obscure local labels. Often, these acts would cover exotica standards or interpolate themes to their own end, so all this music feels exceptionally familiar even if the recordings themselves are rare. Technicolor Paradise is divided into three themes -- Daiquiri Dirges, Rhum Rhapsodies, and Mai Tai Mambos -- which helps maintain the mood while drawing subtle distinctions, such as the very slight surf rock guitars that flow throughout Mai Tai Mambos. These little details are fun but, ultimately, Technicolor Paradise is about the big picture, serving as supporting evidence that the exotica craze was really as vast as it seemed on any number of '90s lounge reissues. Just as importantly, this music is every bit as frothy and fun as the music made by the well-known names of exotica, and that's the reason why any hep cat or kitten should get this set.

Product Details

Release Date: 05/25/2018
Label: Numero
UPC: 0825764106528
catalogNumber: 41065
Rank: 63654

Album Credits

Technical Credits

Lincoln Mayorga   Composer
Baxter   Composer
Jimmy McGriff   Composer
Russell Garcia   Composer
Phil Moody   Composer
Aki Aleong   Composer
George Wright   Composer
Felix DeCola   Composer
Frank Loesser   Composer
Nacio Herb Brown   Composer
Ross Anderson   Composer
Ed Cobb   Composer
Duke Ellington   Composer
Arthur Freed   Composer
Gene Howard   Cover Image
Nelson Miller   Composer
Jim Mills   Composer
Bobby Paris   Composer
Dan Shea   Composer
Mel Taylor   Composer
Juan Tizol   Composer
Alfred Newman   Composer
Vern Acree   Composer
Eden Ahbez   Composer
Robert Drasnin   Composer
Ann Farina   Composer
Santo Farina   Composer
John Greek   Composer
Hakki Obadia   Composer
Betty Moore   Composer
Mel Leven   Composer
Cyril Scott   Composer
Ken Shipley   Producer
Eddie Kochak   Composer
Arnie Derksen   Composer
Mark Bretz   Composer
Andre Brummer   Composer
Rob Sevier   Producer
Eaton Magoon   Composer
Rich Dangel   Composer
John Farina   Composer
Ben Chlapek   Illustrations
Vern Duarte   Composer
Nicky Roberts   Composer
Darla Hood   Composer
Jack Bowman   Composer
James Testa   Composer
Pony Sherrell   Composer
Bill & Jean Bradway   Composer
Gene Sikora   Composer
Walter Bolen   Composer
Clyde Derby   Composer
Bruce Norman Quintet   Composer
Myles Wells   Composer
Joe Wagner   Composer
Gene Toney   Composer
Jerry Swede   Composer
Tommy Falcone   Composer
Roland L Buck   Composer
Harry Blasingame   Composer
Norman Bailey   Composer
Bob Smith   Composer
Herb Kliebe   Composer
Dick Baker   Composer
Don W. Meade   Composer
Bill Loomis   Composer
Daryl Bredeson   Composer
Garth Andrews   Composer
Eddie Wasil   Composer
Barney Allen   Composer
Morrie Duenow   Composer
Jim Bachman   Composer
Halle Benjak   Composer
Carmen Paterra   Composer
Mary Carver   Composer

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