First posted in April 2010, days after I launched this blog. It's no exaggeration to say that this is precisely the sort of thing I opened Bodega Pop's doors to share with the larger world.
I had no idea what this was when I posted it. A poet friend of mine in Singapore hipped me to the artist's identity thusly: "Joey Boy is superstar." I got to work searching YouTube.
as well as Filetram and other file-sharing search engines. Over time, I put together Joey Boy's entire catalog. Which I listened to obsessively.
Having done that, I feel totally comfortable grabbing everyone who walks into the Bodega by the sleeve, sitting each of you down in one of my metal folding "guest" chairs and yammering breathlessly about JB's pop genius.
That said, I totally don't have time to do that, today. I'm due up in Saratoga Springs to oversee a print job for my work and I've been commissioned to write a piece about New York, bodegas and international music ... by August 22nd.
Given that, here's a short bio, followed by what I originally wrote about this CD three years ago:
Born Apisit Opsasaimlikit in 1975, Joey Boy began his career in the 1990s, recording his first hit, "Fun, Fun, Fun" (see video above) with Canadian reggae artist, Snow, in 1995.
Found last year in a Vietnamese CD/Video store on Argyle Street in Chicago--this is quite honestly one of the most bizarrely satisfying purchases of a musical nature I have ever made.
First, let's take a look at "what's up" on the cover. Note that "Rap" is in quotes on the back. As it should be. I have never heard rap like this. I'm fairly certain that, unless you have already heard Thailand's Joey Boy, you probably have never heard rap like this either.
Well, so what is it, then? I'll go out on a limb and just say that it's quite likely the single most carnivalesque melange of rubbery cartoon-y dance-y hip-hoppy trippy-y influences from around the world ever burned into polycarbonate plastic. It is simultaneously the flarfiest and rockin'est thing I have ever heard. I have quickly grown to love it almost as much as life itself. Could any language be less suited to rap than Thai, the most soft-spoken-deferential-un-pissed-off-sounding language on the planet?
But why is that woman in the sunglasses on the cover pointing to her nose like that?