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Baker's Dozen

Untidy Selections: Mr. Scruff's Favourite Albums
The Quietus , May 8th, 2014 06:49

Ahead of his new album, Friendly Bacteria, out on Ninja Tune this month, the tea-loving master of the marathon DJ set pens us his own Baker's Dozen, picking the top 13 records out of his crate


Charles Mingus - Scenes In The City
Originally bearing the unwieldy name of A Modern Jazz Symposium Of Music And Poetry when it was first released in 1957, I picked up an 80s reissue after hearing Hewan Clarke play this on Sunset Radio in the early 90s. Hewan used to play with Colin Curtis at the legendary Berlin jazz sessions in the 80s, and via the radio, gave me and many other people in the Manchester area a very thorough jazz education. I remember dubbing this onto tape, and listening to it repeatedly while doing night shifts in a local supermarket. Despite the title, there is only one spoken word track, 'Scenes In The City’, and the way that Melvin Stewart conjures up an image of a struggling jazz musician is incredible, as are the players providing the backdrop. The whole album is astounding, deep and mellow, perfect for escaping from the late night drudgery of shelf-stacking, although whenever I listen to it now, all I can see are fluorescent strip lights and tinned peas.