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Baker's Dozen

Prophets Of Time: Nik Turner's Favourite Records
Sean Kitching , March 23rd, 2016 10:03

The space rock luminary and former member of Hawkwind, Sphynx and Inner City Unit guides Sean Kitching through 13 instructive and inspirational jazz, rock and soul records that have shaped him and his music


Sidney Bechet ‎– 'Society Blues'
Something I listened to very early on, when I was about 14 I think. I'd moved to Westgate-on-Sea and my cousins had all these French friends who were into all this Quintette du Hot Club de France stuff, of which Stéphane Grappelli and Django Reinhardt, and they had all this Sidney Bechet stuff. 'Society Blues' was one of the albums that they had and I thought, "Wow, I really love this." I was inspired by clarinet players a long time before I got into saxophone players, so I ended up knowing all the clarinet solos off this album. Sidney Bechet was a very galvanizing person. He inspired a lot of people. He inspired John Coltrane. He played soprano saxophone as well as clarinet and had a very individual style – a lot of vibrato on his playing. I always found him very exciting and very innovative. He settled in Paris for a long time because they didn't have the same kind of racial discrimination in France and a lot of black musicians moved to France and were really appreciated there. This sort of music is very celebratory, kind of the hedonistic music of its day. I read somewhere that "jazzing" was another word for "fucking" – that's where the word came from. I think jazz has become overintellectualised and put on a pedestal, when in fact it was music of the people and music to really enjoy yourself to.