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Baker's Dozen

An Expanse Of Sound: Jane Weaver's Favourite Albums
John Freeman , May 17th, 2017 09:37

With the release of her stunning new album, Modern Kosmology, Jane Weaver talks to John Freeman about the 13 records that shaped her musical universe. Portrait by Rebecca Lupton.


Yoko Ono - Fly
I found it hard to choose between Fly and Approximately Infinite Universe, as I love them both. I have chosen Fly. When I started recording The Silver Globe I had meetings with the band and they would ask what sound I was going for on the album. I sent them loads of YouTube links to Fly and they would put their fingers in their ears and scream. They thought it sounded like a crazy mess. The album is free and sounds like a jam. It's pretty out there.

On this album, it sounds like the band are in one room together. I remember when I was recording the track 'Mission Desire' [from The Silver Globe], I wanted to mimic that 'jam vibe' by having all the band playing in the same room. That's why we went into a different studio with a bigger live room. It didn't quite work - production becomes like a big science experiment and it can be almost impossible to recreate certain aspects. However, I am resolved to die trying.

My favourite track is 'Don't Worry Kyoko [(Mummy's Only Looking For Her Hand In The Snow)]'. Ringo Starr and Eric Clapton perform on the album and it's co-produced by Lennon. I was watching a documentary recently about the time Phil Spector and Yoko One co-produced a Lennon song – I think it might have been 'Oh Yoko!' – for one his records. I always wondered what she did in those sessions but the documentary showed her to be pretty hands on. She was telling Spector what to do, which was awesome. She was not afraid.

I was brought up close to Liverpool and I had never really delved into what Yoko One was about. The general consensus in Liverpool was that she broke up The Beatles. Andy once said that actually Yoko Ono had her career destroyed by The Beatles. That's the other angle. She was an artist in her own right, but I didn't know much about her until the last ten years. I have a really strong affection for her now. People say that some of her stuff is really unlistenable but I don't care. I think she is such a character. The fact that she has been an artist continuously throughout her life – and she must be in her 80s – means I have nothing but respect for her.