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Graham Parker — Discovering Japan
Album: Squeezing Out Sparks
Avg rating:
5.6

Your rating:
Total ratings: 568









Released: 1979
Length: 3:16
Plays (last 30 days): 1
Her heart is nearly breaking, the earth is nearly quaking
The Tokyo's taxi's braking, it's screaming to a halt
And there's nothing to hold on to when gravity betrays you
And every kiss enslaves you-oo-oo

She knows how hard her heart grows under the nuclear shadows
She can't escape the feeling repeating in her head
When after all the urges some kind of truth emerges
We felt the deadly surges

Discovering Japan--an --an
Discovering Japan--an --an

The GIs only use her, they only ram right through her
Giving an eastern promise, that they could never keep
Seeing a million miles, between their joke and smiles
She heard their hard denials [don't pause]

As the tears dropped sideways down her face, face
I woke up talking in the tongue of a different race, race
And as the flight touches down my watch says 8:02
But that's midnight to you,
Midnight to you
Midnight to you

I dreamed headlong collisions in jet lag panavisions
I shouted sayonara it didn't mean goodbye
But lovers turn to posers show up in film exposures
Just like in travel brochures
Discovering Japan Discovering Japan

(x6 and fade)
Comments (65)add comment
Having been there as an avid teenage music enthusiast, this sounds SO 1979.  Great lyrics, but super standard music.  Graham Parker never had a major hit, I think, but he probably had a lot of of influence on the direction of rock music.
"I shouted sayonara, it didnt mean goodbye."

Great tune.
I bought the LP on release - lots of good music at that time.

It's a funny old world. Ten years ago I went to Japan, met and married a wonderful lady.

We are living happily ever after.
 ScottFromWyoming wrote:
I saw Graham open for Eric Clapton (!) and as prickly as ever, and knowing full well that EC was credited by the audience for bringing reggae to the masses, Graham told them he'd recorded reggae years before any of them had ever heard of it {4 years after I shot the sheriff, actually} and got booed for the rest of his set. Great show
 
GREAT STORY!

That G.P. is a feisty one.
I had a  curry last night and still I'm 'squeezing out sparks' 
Hugely influential album. This one came out around the same time as This Years Model and I'm The Man. Graham was right up there with Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe and Joe Jackson in the New Wave, Post Punk Singer Songwriter pantheon.
I saw Graham open for Eric Clapton (!) and as prickly as ever, and knowing full well that EC was credited by the audience for bringing reggae to the masses, Graham told them he'd recorded reggae years before any of them had ever heard of it {4 years after I shot the sheriff, actually} and got booed for the rest of his set. Great show
songs like this make me appreciate the fact i didnt had to grow up in the 80s. i was waiting for a 2 minute long synthesizer solo, at least that didnt happen.
 leafmold wrote:
Why is this rated so low?
 
'Swat I was wonderin'.
Always liked this tune, and album.
Never really got beyond cult favorite over here.  Nonetheless, he's cranked out high level music for decades.  65 years on and capable as eva!
Much prefer "Turning Japanese".I really think so.
Now you're talkin'...
 Rtschnell wrote:
I saw Graham as the warmup to a Cheap Trick show in Chicago when the 'Squeezing out Sparks' album was out, and he blew me away. One of those instances when the unknown warmup band completely eclipses the main act you go to see. Hearing Graham again is like a breath of fresh air.
 
cool!
wicked song 
Quality Rock  : )
Thanks—it's great to see a play request granted!

Now, about those Buzzcocks' smoke signals I've been sending out...
 fretman wrote:
There, its a 5.6 now...
 
Why is this rated so low?
It's been almost EIGHT YEARS since we've heard this one...PLEASE DUST IT OFF AND GIVE IT A GO!
Always a sentimental fave- love his stuff. Just bought some GP on CD- all I had was vinyl. I can hear now where the comments about production quality come from- Good ears folks!
Always liked Parker. That album is class, as someone said, from one end to the other. Unfortunately, it wasn't recorded well, in my opinion. He had problems with his labels, and maybe that's why I've never seen a good remaster. Anyway, he's brilliant.
Apart from the fact that this is not really a style I like, the quality of the song/mp3 seemed kinda poor too. Or maybe the producer was just taking a nap while they were recording it.
There, its a 5.6 now...
Wow! It's been a long time since I've heard this. I bought the LP (should give you an idea how old I am!) when I was in college and wore it out. It's good from one end to the other. Thanks for queuing this up!
Sounds like Col. Tom Parker. Or Pappy Parker. Or the Jam with Paul Weller, with Ranking Roger not singing lead...
For such an upbeat melody, the lyrics are certainly dark
Her heart is nearly breaking, the earth is nearly quaking, The Tokyo taxi's braking, it's screaming to a halt And there's nothing to hold on to when gravity betrays you and every kiss enslaves you She knows how hard her heart grows under the nuclear shadows, She can't escape the feeling repeating in her head When after all the urges, some kind of truth emerges We felt the deadly surges discovering Japan The GI's only use her, they always ram right through her, Giving an Eastern promise that they could never keep Seeing a million miles between their jokes and smiles, she heard their hard denials As the tears dropped sideways down her face, face I wake up talking in the tongue of a different race, race And as the flight touches down my watch says eight-oh-two, but that's midnight to you I dreamed headlong collisions in jetlag panavision I shouted 'soyanara', it didn't mean goodbye But lovers turn to posers, show up in film exposures Just like in travel brochures discovering Japan
Haven't heard this in years. Thanks, Bill.
I drove about 8 hours from East TN, to Phoenixville, PA to check out Grahm, had never really heard much of his stuff except for studio recordings. Yeah, ok sounding;however... This guy put on a great solo show. His voice surged with energy and his guitar held the room with ease. Worth an effort to see him perform live if he comes to a venue near you.
Saw Parker about three months ago in a very small club here in California. Him and another guy playing guitar and they were hot. His new material sounded better than the older, of which I am a hardy fan. As for being like Elvis Costello, Parker preceded the mid-seventies "punk" movement by recording earlier and being part of the English "pub-rock' era from 1973 to 1975, so I guess that would make Costello like Parker, although the similarites between the two are vocally close.
Reminds me of Elvis Costello. Unfortunately not a compliment in my book!
vvlee wrote:
Saw Graham Parker a couple New Years Eve's ago at First Night in Boston. Great, energetic show! The guy can still rock.
I was wondering if he was still around. Good to hear. Always liked his stuff.
Something from "Live! Alone in America", would be appreciated greatly. GP remains vibrant and relevant. Great stuff.
Saw Graham Parker a couple New Years Eve's ago at First Night in Boston. Great, energetic show! The guy can still rock.
jah_blessed wrote:
I really need to discover Japan!
It's right there between China and California!
Wonder what he did with the money his mom gave him for singing lessons.
Where was I when you played this? Off line, not pachinko...one reason I'm here, thanks G.P.! :doh:
I really need to discover Japan!
Love Graham Parker! :clap: Please seed the playlist with more of his brilliant tunes. The man has been around for 30+ years and has rarely missed a step during all that time. Still the underdog, underplayed genius. Where better to show respect than RP?
Classic "GP" on RP...you just can't go wrong with anything from "Squeezing Out Sparks" :cheers:
There was another song playing on the album rock stations about the same time as this one, called "This is Japan." (Can't remember the artist.) If someone could find it and upload it (hint! hint!) it would make a nice paring with this one.
I had part of the playlist covered by another application, so I thought it said Graham Parsons, and unmuted. This isn't bad, but can we hear some Graham Parsons now? \:D/
tonypf wrote:
Always been a fan. Glad to see more of Graham's tunes showing up here.
totally agree, he deserves more.
8-< Not crazy about it ...
AI-in-Japan wrote:
A classic song from one of Parkers many great albums, Squeezing Out Sparks.
A great and underrated album -- same is true of the artist. Told the record companies to take a flying leap (listen to "Mercury Poisoning"), and suffered the consequences of that.
This song always gets me tapping my feet and doin' a little dance in my chair. Really, I must look like an idiot when I'm listening to this song. Oh well, too bad. :D
Always been a fan. Glad to see more of Graham's tunes showing up here.
"the plane touches down; the clock says 8:02, but that's midnight to you..." not sure why this line always got to me. talkin' 'bout time zones. great lyric-writing, maybe? gave it a 9.
please turn this off
...AND, he survived Mercury Poisoning!
I saw Graham as the warmup to a Cheap Trick show in Chicago when the 'Squeezing out Sparks' album was out, and he blew me away. One of those instances when the unknown warmup band completely eclipses the main act you go to see. Hearing Graham again is like a breath of fresh air.
drH wrote:
Outstanding Joe Jackson... er, Graham Parker selection!
I believe he spells his name E-L-V-I-S C-O-S-T-E-L-L-O. Good stuff.
brando wrote:
this song is awful!
you should hear what was being played on mainstream radio when this came out. :puke: this song was truly a breath of fresh air! :nodhead:
this song is awful!
ScottFromWyoming wrote:
Let me get this straight: You have Elvis' Radio Radio as a 10, and GP's Discovering Japan a 1? I think someone's hacked your RP account.
siccum scott! by the way... my "waiting for the ufo's" didn't make the cut. rats!
Happy Birthday, GP
lotus_65 wrote:
:cry: terrible :cry:
Let me get this straight: You have Elvis' Radio Radio as a 10, and GP's Discovering Japan a 1? I think someone's hacked your RP account.
JrzyTmata wrote:
that would be me!
Thanks Jrzy. Love this one....
This was the music that big kids listened to when I was a mere tyke. Well, at least the cool kids did. . . .
:cry: terrible :cry:
JrzyTmata wrote:
awww thanks!! I don't think I know that one. just looked it up on iTunes and listened to a sample. I remember it now! it's from Squeezing Out Sparks. It's been many years since I listen to that vinyl. 8O Holy Moley!! you can download Squeezing Out Sparks+ Live Sparks at iTunes for $9.99. that's 22 songs!! what a bargain! I have to tell DrH about this! :lol: he loves a good iTunes bargain.
Cool, Jrzy,one of my alltime fave artists. I have the Live Sparks set, very good. The setlist is exactly the same as the actual album and it's a good freshener after hearing the actual album a few hundred times.
Kurt_from_La_Qui wrote:
most excellent Jrzy!!!! i'm going to upload "waiting for the ufo's" in your honor.
awww thanks!! I don't think I know that one. just looked it up on iTunes and listened to a sample. I remember it now! it's from Squeezing Out Sparks. It's been many years since I listen to that vinyl. 8O Holy Moley!! you can download Squeezing Out Sparks+ Live Sparks at iTunes for $9.99. that's 22 songs!! what a bargain! I have to tell DrH about this! :lol: he loves a good iTunes bargain.
JrzyTmata wrote:
that would be me!
most excellent Jrzy!!!! i'm going to upload "waiting for the ufo's" in your honor.
ScottFromWyoming wrote:
Do I hear right? Finally a Graham Parker classic? Wow. Thanks uploader! :notworthy: sounds a little muddy tho
that would be me!
Outstanding Joe Jackson... er, Graham Parker selection!
Do I hear right? Finally a Graham Parker classic? Wow. Thanks uploader! :notworthy: sounds a little muddy tho
A classic song from one of Parkers many great albums, Squeezing Out Sparks.