Utopian Turtletop. Monsieur Croche's Bête Noire. Contact: turtletop [at] hotmail [dot] com

Friday, April 01, 2005


I come across him only occasionally on the oldies station, and I’ve never even seen a CD by him, but whenever I hear Chris Montez, I’m charmed & seduced. Fronting an easy-going, laid-back version of the Johnny Rivers hand-clapping party rock vibe, Montez has a sweet, light, friendly, sexy, slightly-and-charmingly-out-of-tune voice. The only songs I’d heard had been a bouncy, light, sexy “Call Me,” much less fervent than Petula Clark’s original; and a pretty big ‘60s hit I don’t recall having heard anyone else sing, “The More I See You,” another light bouncy sexy number. It wasn’t until today that I learned that he had recorded hand-clapping party-vibe arrangements of some Schubert Lieder, when I heard his Spanish-language take on “Die Forelle,” or “The Trout,” now sung as “La Trucha,” on the local world music station. You wouldn’t necessarily think that that Schubert’s brisk 6/8 would translate well to a laid-back 4/4 party rockin’ groove, but I found the whole thing awkwardly sweet. I guess it was a minor hit in Germany in the early ‘70s.
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