It's been quite some time since I've sat down and listened to Basia. She is one of those acts whose music should be so cheesy, because it hems so close to "smooth jazz" *gags*. And when I say "smooth jazz" I'm not talking things like Diana Krall (who is much more in the vein of classic vocal jazz) but I'm talking things like Kenny G and Dave Koz and all those other things they would have played on the Jazz Patio on whatever radio station that was out of Cedar Rapids. But somehow, she manages to pull off the style of music that she does - and not only does she pull it off, she pulls it off with panache.
I first heard of Basia one morning when I was in high school sitting at the breakfast table watching "Good Morning America." She was a guest on there and sang the song "Time & Tide" which I immediately fell in love with. I got her debut CD through one of those "buy 9 CDs for the price of 1" CD clubs that were all the rage then. And initially, I didn't like it. But as it turns out, it was a rather slow burn.
By the time her second CD came out - London Warsaw New York - she had actually eked out a minor radio hit in "Cruising For Bruising" and I was really into her. It took her an ungodly 5 years to put out her next (and, so far, last) CD The Sweetest Illusion which, well, ranks in my top 20 favorite CDs of all time. Like most good music, it's made even better by memories from the time and this is no exception. I was in the last little bit of my 4th year of college and was breaking out of some pretty negative social situations that I had gotten myself stuck in. I was learning how to enjoy just being by myself, and Basia's great CD made that so much easier. Not that it was easy - it involved separating myself from people that I thought had been good friends and iin actuality, weren't. But listening to songs like "Third Time Lucky" and "An Olive Tree" were just the antidote I needed at that time in my life.
And of course, there's also the copious use of song lyrics as saved games in Wolfenstein 3D which my sister and I played relentlessly that summer. But that's another story altogether.
You can imagine my excitement when I realized that Basia was coming back, sort of, with a Matt Bianco CD. I've already blogged this CD once, so I won't bore you with the long harangue, but it was great to have new Basia music to listen to. And surprisingly, I keep coming back to Matt's Mood despite the fact that really, it's only mediocre -- certainly, I like Basia's solo stuff better.
So I don't know what the point of this entry has been, other than to go on about an obscure Polish singer. One that I happen to like a lot, and one that I frequently forget about.