Sunday has become a regular busy session day for me and excitingly Tony in Sydney is in the studio tomorrow with members of Australian legends Taman Shud recording his songs. Lovely to see the progress and see Tony’s songs find their way into a proper studio. Rajan in Brooklyn sent me a great new song today, progress. Brian in Minneapolis is finding his way into the creative spirit and coming up with cool ideas and Doug in Wappingers Falls is gathering ideas, learning songs, writing and imagining a musical future. Inspiring people inspire me to be inspired. You learn so much from the people you teach. You learn from the discussion, the analysis and the action, the exploring of the options, the creations, the different perspectives. Just watching art grow is an inspiration in itself.
I was in the studio doing the sessions today and I kept seeing shirtless bodies with no heads walking by the window. At one point a girl, a can of beer and a friend sat outside the window talking. They were sitting between the cars, it seemed like such an odd place to sit as the park is 30 seconds away. Ah, it just occurred to me, you can’t drink in the park, million dollar fine. There was a constant flow of people heading down into the park or through it to the sea front and the town beach. De Pfeffel told everyone not to gather till Monday, on this really beautiful and hot day, Dominic?
The riots in America have been really making me feel sad for the world. It seems that the problem is that people protect their own people when they do wrong, although, I read that sadist Chauvin’s wife had filed for divorce. But really, if you saw your friend kill someone what would you do? I mean, kill someone, not steal a loaf of bread, kill someone! That’s why the other three sadists have to be charged because they stood and watched him murder the guy and that poor man’s life was less important than their loyalty to their sadist mate. Tragic.
I spoke to Jerome today in Berlin about the tracks I’m working on here and as it happens Olivia’s Dad sent an article from the local paper (Bonn/Cologne area) with a picture of Tangerine Dream and there was Jerome. I guess it’s 50 years since Electronic Meditation was released. On Wikipedia’s Tangerine Dream discography 160 titles are listed from 1970 – 2020. What a legacy.
I was also talking to Ricky from Brian Jonestown Massacre today as he sent me his other band Mellow Drunk’s albums and it was an opportunity to get a list of albums from him for this Guest Listening project that is transpiring each night. So I have two more lists after tonight. I can choose my own records to play, but there’s something surprising about doing it this way, I like it.
Music today has been chosen by Sessioneer Noel from just south of London. It was Noel who donated his pristine condition collection to the In Deep Music Archive. Some great albums here I haven’t heard for a very long time.
Eno seems to be most famous for three things, ambient music, producing U2 and others as well as being in the initial lineup of Roxy Music (for two albums), but the best thing about him are his four vocal albums. Here Come The Warm Jets (1974) being his first. I played this to death when it first came out. What’s good about it is that it’s just so interesting. Interesting songs, ideas, tunes, approach. Odd lyrics, odd voice, odd arrangements. It’s arty, thoughtful, original and makes you want to wear eye-shadow and fake tiger skin. Heavy friends include Robert Fripp and John Wetton from King Crimson, Phil Manzanera, Paul Thompson, and Andy Mackay from Roxy Music, Chris Spedding from everywhere, Paul Rudolph and Simon King from Hawkwind, Marty Simons from Sharks, Bill MacCormick from Matching Mole, Busta Jones from session land. Love, love, love.
The Violent Femmes debut album took off and I’m sure it was a big surprise to everybody. Great cover art, wacky name and strange musical lineup, snare, acoustic bass, acoustic guitar and Gordon Gano’s funny voice and witty lyrics. It’s like college Folk, catchy, somehow unexpected, smart, ironic, brainy people having fun. Played with them once in Columbus, Ohio, again in California, hung out with Gordon a bit, he was nice. Saw them years ago at the Town And Country Club in London, packed out.
I hadn’t heard Lou Reed’s Berlin for such a long time. It’s another arty masterpiece. Apparently nobody bought it when it came out. That’s how you know how good it is. It’s a great album to listen to into the night, eyes closed, following the characters that Reed remembers or reimagines. A beautiful and tragic album.
The fourth album I played from Noel’s list tonight was another album by Welsh band Man, Back To The Future (1974), after Nicklas Barker’s 2oz Of Plastic With A Little Hole In The Middle from last week. A period of transition for Man with an ever-changing lineup, this was a double album, half studio, half live. It went to No. 23 in the UK chart despite original member Clive John leaving and Deke Leonard gone two albums before (missing presumed forming Iceberg). Bass player Martin Ace was also gone. My first Man experience was the next album Rhinos, Winos And Lunatics where Leonard returned. Three albums later Ace was back for one live album (Maximum Darkness), but they finally split in 1976. There had been a few lineup changes over the years with Mickey Jones the only one playing on every record. They may have been killed by Punk, but they left behind a dozen worthy albums. There’s so many great musical sections on Man albums (wait till you hear the choir on the live sides). Dig! And thanks Noel for the list.
Song Of The Day is Turn Away To The Stars, because like Man it’s not really quite part of a genre. Is it Welsh music, Pub Rock, Progressive, West Coast influenced? It’s always a result when you write a song that doesn’t fit.
Turn Away To The Stars
Sunlight burns me, scars and pain
Afterwards I add up the day
Multi-application, dividing time
Keeping me encouraged is enough
Kindness never hurt someone too much
I belong here, crying or laughing
I turn away to the stars
Soothing nightlight, soon comes sleep
Eating reality away
Ordering my eyes into the shade
I can win here, send me the reason
Wrapped in a kiss from the stars
Spirit Level (1992)