Saturday, February 04, 2012
Lt. Uhura, Song Report
Way back in 2009, I posted Nichelle Nichols' album, "Out of This World". In the post, I stated that this was her second album and that I did not own the first one, "Down To Earth". Since that time, I have come to own "Down To Earth" and thought I would share it with you all. I stated in the 09 post that I thought it might be pretty good. In my opinion, though it is way better than "Out of This World", it still sounds like someone who is trying way too hard. But all in all, not terrible. You decide when you listen to Nichelle Nichols' "Down To Earth". Enjoy!
Nichelle Nichols - Down To Earth
For some added enjoyment, here is the post from 2009 featuring "Out of This World".
Many Star Trek cast members have released albums over the years. There is the infamous "The Transformed Man" by William Shatner (along with the great follow up, "Has Been"), Leonard Nimoy's classic records and even Brent Spiner got in on the act in 1991 with an album called "Ol' Yellow Eyes Is Back". But for my money, it doesn't get any more "far out" then Nichelle Nichols' musical contribution to the world of celebrity recordings. In all fairness, we must remember that Nichelle started out as a professional singer. Her first gigs were with some big time heavy weights named Duke Ellington and Lionel Hampton. This was all before she donned the infamous short red dress and went down in the history books as Lt. Uhura. And in 1967 she banked on this fame and released her first solo album entitled, "Down To Earth". 23 years later she would release her second album. That's the one we are going to talk about today! It's called "Out Of This Word" and believe me, it is! I have never had the privilege to hear "Down To Earth" but I have owned "Out of This World" for years. I picked up a copy back in the mid 90s and hold it in my collection but never put it on. I am going to assume that "Down To Earth" is not all that bad and that Nichelle really shines (if anyone has a copy, please feel free to share it with me as I will pay the favor forward forward and share it with everyone here). With "Out Of This World", Nichelle has completely gone in the opposite direction. Her singing is not the problem. It's also not the cure! However, what really tends to stick out more than anything is the poor songwriting and even worse production. The whole album sounds like it was put together with Casio Keyboards and a Tascam Porto-Studio. There's a whole batch of "space-inspired" songs and Nichelle evens takes a stab at singing the immortal Theme from Star Trek. Then there's "Gene". Nichelle's tribute to her former lover (yes, you read right!). There are two versions of "Gene" here. The first is sung and the second is spoken and both are bad. At the end of the album is an interview track that lasts just about the same amount of time as the songs do. All in all, a complete package. But don't let my opinion sway you. Take and a listen and judge for yourself as I present to you "Nichelle Nichols: Out of This World". Enjoy!
Nichelle Nichols - Out Of This World
While listening to the caucaphonus sounds of Miss Nichols, why not color Uhura?! (click picture to open a new window with the full size)