Jazz has a reputation for being a somewhat esoteric genre of music, but I have a theory that many more people actually appreciate it than we realize. Part of its broad appeal is thanks to The Weather Channel in the mid-’90s, but I believe Gran Turismo also deserves some credit.
A friend recently turned me onto this excellent cover of a tune that will be instantly recognizable to anyone who spent hours browsing the dealerships of Gran Turismo 4. It’s “The Motorious Zone,” performed by Amedeo Serra, Cristiano Caiazzo, Francesco Corrado and Paolo Ulisse.
The quartet certainly does the track justice. I can’t get enough of that groovin’ bassline or the original guitar part toward the end of the recording. I have to think Isamu Ohira, who composed this and much of Gran Turismo’s soundtrack back in the day, would be impressed.
Later Gran Turismo titles supplemented the jazz fusion stylings of the early games with lounge and ambient techno. Sonically, there’s still a magic to the way these games feel when you’re not racing, just as much as when you’re actually on track.
However, GT4 remains the apex for many. Not only was the music on point, but there was just so much to explore, between poking into manufacturer’s classic collections, taking a stroll around the used car dealerships every couple of days, tuning your rides and snapping photos. It certainly gave you a lot of time for these songs to worm their way into your head. And once they got in there, you’d never want them to leave.