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Flower Travellin' Band are an influential Japanese hard rock outfit that was first active in the late 1960s and early 1970s, consisting of Akira "Joe" Yamanaka (vocals), Hideki Ishima (guitar), Joji "George" Wada (drums) and Jun Kozuki (bass). As of January 12th, 2008 they have officially reunited and hired a new member, keyboardist Nobuhiko Shinohara.
The band was initially organized by Japanese entertainer and entrepreneur Yuya Uchida as "The Flowers," a cover band, and featured two vocalists - himself, and female vocalist Remi Aso, who was touted as the Japanese version of Janis Joplin. Their first album consisted of covers of Western pop songs. It was primarily notable for the fact that all of the band members appeared nude on the cover, including Aso, which was considered scandalous at the time.
However, after the "Flowers" album, Uchida lost interest and Aso drifted away. The remaining members reorganized themselves, acquiring Joe Yamanaka as a vocalist on the recommendation of Uchida, and proceeded to explore a more original and rock-oriented direction.
In early 1973, they were billed to open for the Rolling Stones, but Mick Jagger's visa was rejected from a previous drug conviction and all concerts were cancelled. Later that year the band broke up, with Yamanaka going on to release various solo albums.
Guitarist Hideki Ishima released a solo album, One Day, in 1973, and continued a career as a studio musician, guesting on several of Yamanaka's solo albums. Ishima is still active in the music scene in Japan, and specializes in playing the "sitarla," an instrument he designed. The sitarla combines the qualities of a solidbody electric guitar and the sitar.
More fully structured songs, featuring a stronger progressive rock influence, although the intense guitar workouts and longer song structures remain somewhat similar to Satori. During this period, Flower Travellin' Band opened for many of the top rock acts of its day, including Emerson, Lake and Palmer, The Jeff Beck Group, and others.
01. Introduction (0:27) 02. Unaware (5:51) 03. Aw Give Me Air (3:20) 04. Kamikaze (4:16) 05. Hiroshima (5:13) 06. Spasms (5:23) 07. Heaven And Hell (3:50) 08. That's All (6:39)
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