A while ago I’ve been searching for Sadao Watanabe’s song, “Old Photograph,” on the Internet but my efforts turned futile. Four years ago, I experienced the same thing while shopping for a jazz album for my father. I asked a crew at a Tower Records outlet if he can assist me in looking for Sadao Watanabe’s album which contains the song but he ‘s not familiar with the musician so I gave up. I got Lou Pardini’s CD instead for my papa.
It was Summer ’95 when I first heard “Old Photograph” over 105.1 Crossover, and I remember rushing to the phone to ask the DJ the name of the artist who performed it. He said Sadao Watanabe. I found out later that Sadao was the saxophonist but there was someone else who offered his voice for this number.
I thought of the man who sang “Old Photograph” as a rare talent. His voice is like no other. Okay, he may sound a bit like Stevie Wonder but there’s something else in him. His song and voice would always come to mind whatever it is I might be doing in a given time or day.
This afternoon, while working on an article, I found myself humming to the tune of “Old Photograph” and like always, I wondered how such a beautiful song can be nonexistent to the rest of the world? It seems it’s only I who appreciates it while the rest of the world are into thumping and noisier stuff.
Then I thought, maybe I should look up Sadao Watanabe’s website or even Youtube, there might be major improvement. I even asked the assistance of music buffs in the office.
Finally, out of the brilliance of our copywriter Avi, I found the man behind the mysterious voice! His name’s Warren Wiebie. I immediately went to check his official site only to discover that he passed away on October 25, 1998 at the age of 45. According to his info sheet, his mentor was David Foster and he had worked with the great people of musicdom during his lifetime such as Burt Bacharach, Tamia Washington and James Ingram, among others.
I guess I won’t be listening to any new song from Warren Wiebe, not in this lifetime. I’m left with no choice but to collect all his works and treasure them ’til my hair turns gray.