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Baker's Dozen

Serious Vibe: Dave Okumu Of The Invisible's Favourite Albums
Danny Riley , March 10th, 2016 10:59

Before he plays Convergence festival, the prolific singer and guitarist speaks to Danny Riley about the albums that have shaped his musical life, including D'Angelo, Aphex Twin and "diminutive funk goblin" Prince


Shuggie Otis – Inspiration Information
The Shuggie album I heard when it was reissued. It feels like I was getting into it really heavily round the time that I was making the first Invisible record. Definitely, he's sort of a polymath, but what I love about that record is that it feels like someone just going all in. I'm a big believer in investing in your own creativity, as a creative person I think it's the most positive thing you can do. When you hear records where people do a lot of the stuff themselves, they often really feel like that. It's someone who's really exploring their own creativity and their own way of doing things. Some of those things might be a little bit off-centre, or slightly idiosyncratic or incomplete, but it creates something so unique and so special. I'm always in favour of that, and as a producer, when I'm working with other artists I just want to push them to the fore. With record labels sometimes they want to polish things up and make them clean, professional and presentable, but I lean more the other way, I want to push the idiosyncrasies to the fore and make the cracks come out because that's what makes something feel incredibly personal, and it's through the personal that you discover the universal I guess. So with that record you feel like he's really in his own imagination, and I love the way some of the tracks feel incomplete or unfinished. They sort of fall apart in strange ways.

I'm a lover of rhythm-based music, I love funk and soul, but I'm always interested in people who go beyond a template. That sort of music can feel very much of a time and quite retro or nostalgic, but you get people who bring that DNA into a new territory and I think the way that you do that is by committing to really being as personal as possible, and I think that record really does that. There's such a blend, there's a really psychedelic quality to it, an experimental quality, there's a pop sensibility, there's all of these things.

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