Just Because Music: Kongos’ “Come With Me Now”

I was recently watching Kiss Me Kate for the umpteenth time and thinking, as I always do, that (a) I like Howard Keel’s voice, (b) I like baritones generally, and (c) there are no baritone pop voices today. That didn’t used to be the case, of course. Back in the day, one could listen to Bing Crosby, or Dick Haymes, or Billy Eckstine, or any number of other pop-singing baritones. Nowadays, though, it’s rare to hear a “grown-up” male voice. They’re all pop tenors and exceptions, if they exist, tend to go even higher and squeakier (think Cee Lo Green or Nate Ruess, who has a fascinating, but not very manly, voice).

I guess that’s why I was taken aback when I first heard the Kongos’ “Come With Me Now.” This is kind of old-fashioned rock-and-roll, sung by people whose voices have clearly changed. The singers are four brothers, of Greek extraction, who were born in South Africa, and raised both there and in England. Whether or not one likes their music (I’m old enough to like this kind of throbbing rock ‘n roll), I think they stand out simply because they sound like men:

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  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com/2014/06/02/santa-monicas-new-theme-song/

    While Japanese pop have music which I can hear for longer repetitions, I really liked the song in my blog post there, in terms of reading the lyrics and the AMV arrangement, which is slightly different yet makes a large difference in tone.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EY5OSzZ3kdM

    The theme is essentially about why a person might be motivated to fight.

    立ち上がれ 気高く舞え 天命(さだめ)を受けた戦士よ
    tachiagare, kedakaku mae, sadame wo uketa senshi yo
    Stand tall, dance with pride, oh warriors who’ve accepted your destiny,

    たとえ傷ついて 力尽きても
    tatoe kizutsuite, chikara tsukitemo
    even if you’re in pain and your strength is spent.

    赤く燃え 見事に散って 星になった命よ
    akaku moe, migoto ni chitte, hoshi ni natta inochi yo
    Oh the lives of those who died in glory, burning bright red as stars.

    時を越え その名前を 胸に刻もう Just Forever
    toki wo koe, sono namae wo, mune ni kizamou Just Forever
    Overcome time and carve their names into your heart forever.

    立ち上がれ 気高く舞え 天命(さだめ)を受けた戦士よ
    tachiagare, kedakaku mae, sadame wo uketa senshi yo
    Stand tall, dance with pride, oh warriors who’ve accepted your destiny,

    たとえ傷ついて 力尽きても
    tatoe kizutsuite, chikara tsukitemo
    even if you’re in pain and your strength is spent.

    熱くなれ 大きく咲け 天に捧げし命よ 明日の平和への 礎となれ
    atsuku nare, ookiku sake, ten ni sasageshi inochi yo, asu no heiwa e no ishizue to nare
    Burn with fury, bloom profusely, oh lives offered up to the heavens, become the cornerstones for tomorrow’s peace.

    赤く燃え 見事に散って 星になった命よ
    akaku moe, migoto ni chitte, hoshi ni natta inochi yo
    Oh the lives of those who died in glory, burning bright red as stars.

    時を越え その名前を 胸に刻もう Just Forever

    toki wo koe, sono namae wo, mune ni kizamou Just Forever
    Overcome time and carve their names into your heart forever.

    • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

      The lyrics are from the last stanza. For the full lyrics, check the blog link, it should be on the main page.