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Baker's Dozen

The Spirit Is The Thing: Irmin Schmidt's Favourite Records
Sean Kitching , December 4th, 2015 10:46

As the former Can man releases his Electro Violet box set this week, he boils his all-time favourites down to a 'records of the day' selection, taking Sean Kitching from albums to individual songs and classical compositions


John Coltrane - The Olatunji Concert: The Last Live Recording
For instance, when I say that Coltrane was an influence, you can't really hear it in Can. Especially not in this live concert, which is a little bit like the Sun Ra Arkestra. I was tempted to include a recording by them but then I fell upon this. It's very similar - they have a lot to do with each other. Pharoah Sanders, who in fact was given that name by Sun Ra, is also on the recording [along with Alice Coltrane, Rashied Ali, Algie DeWitt, Jimmy Garrison and Jumma Santos]. When Can got very violent, sometimes we sounded like this, in a way. The idea was very similar. When you listen to live recordings, sometimes there are parts which reflect the same ideas, the same spirit of controlled violence. And of course, he was aware when he made this recording that he was dying.