Wet Pinkey is the inaugural project of New York City-based husband and wife duo Masashi and Chinatsu Ohtsu. Their first album can only be described as deranged Indie J-Rock, rounded out with head-nodding guitar and a few jokes for good measure. It reflects the couple’s varied interests and influences, from Iggy Pop to Janis Joplin, from visual art to hair design to James Brown to Deerhoof to their young son, Shigi. Mostly, it is meant to be fun.
Their band formed in 2010 over an unforgettable beat and a Japanese dish of sautéed potatoes and beef (“Niku Jaga”). The music brings together their separate long histories in music and performance: Chinatsu fronted a ‘70s cover group and a rock band in her birthplace, Japan, and Masashi released “A Soundtrack to an Imaginary Film” with bass guitarist Hiroyuki Shido and percussionist Will Ryan. The ten tracks on that album have been described as “city-urban ambient music,” and were released on Buddhafunk Records in 2010.
Musical influences are called out affectionately in the album: “Pop” is about Chinatsu’s high school teacher, who first played for her the ‘70s classics (Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, and more). In a small town in the mountains above Osaka, Japan, a little girl dreamed of rock music and the big city. After 13 years in the U.S., and new influences including poetry slams in California and New York City street culture, Wet Pinkey represents a return to the music she loves and a lighthearted album with rock at its core. She says, “Wet Pinkey just happened. I hope people have fun listening to it.” She wrote and performed all the lyrics on the new album.
Masashi plays acoustic, electric, and bass guitar on the new album, and mixed, arranged and produced the album. Born in Japan and raised in New York, his education at Parsons School of Design and a successful career in photography and visual arts always lived alongside a love of music: everything from Son House to Bach to Miles Davis to Iggy Pop. With this album, he has a chance to express his playful side and his love of rock music: “This was a fun project that happened organically. It’s nice to work on something that is all about having fun -- I really enjoyed the process from start to finish,” says Masashi.