As mentioned in earlier posts, Tiki culture was a big part of the Atomic Age. And, also, as mentioned in earlier posts, I often struggle with the idea of labeling music as “atompunk” or not. However, much like Bossa Nova and ambient music, the music found in tiki lounges across America during the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s is a definite treasure from the time period. I can just image the people of the supposed “future” sitting around in “futuristic” cocktail dresses and two button suits, sipping the newest concoction out of googie inspired glasses and listening to Exotica tracks from Les Baxter and Arthur Lyman like these in the background, on their new hi-fi systems.
From the ‘pedia:
Exotica is a musical genre, named after the 1957 Martin Denny album of the same title, popular during the 1950s to mid-1960s, typically with the suburban set who came of age during World War II. The musical colloquialism, exotica, means tropical ersatz: the non-native, pseudo experience of Oceania (Polynesia, Melanesia, Micronesia, Southeast Asia, and especially Hawaii). Denny described the musical style as “a combination of the South Pacific and the Orient…what a lot of people imagined the islands to be like…it’s pure fantasy though.” While the South Seas forms the core region, exotica reflects the “musical impressions” of every place from standard travel destinations to the mythical “shangri-las” dreamt of by armchair safari-ers.