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Baker's Dozen

Heart Beats: Stuart A Staples On The Music That Inspired Arrythmia
Luke Turner , June 27th, 2018 09:07

From Linton Kwesi Johnson to Laurie Anderson, Kendrick Lamar to Robert Wyatt, Miles Davis and Insecure Men - Tindersticks vocalist Stuart A Staples selects the music that shaped his brilliant new solo album, Arrythmia


Linton Kwesi Johnson – Dread, Beat an' Blood
I'm including this because I felt its surprising effect on the writing of 'A New Real' in some of the vocal rhythms. I feel him living in something like this:

"To feel love / once buried, once lost / recovered and polished / shining and precious, cherished / I feel love…"

I feel a closeness to UK reggae from my youth - LKJ is a powerful, authentic voice, (Dennis Bovell's production ain't bad either) and he was there (and still is) to articulate the struggle. I wouldn't pretend to understand the Jamaican experience in the UK in the late 70s and early 80s though living in Hyson Green and Forest Fields then in Nottingham opened my eyes and ears to living within different cultures to the one I was raised in – the coal mining communities were not renowned for being multicultural. The affinity between punk and reggae and the rise of 2tone and The Specials broke down the race barriers of our parents, went a long way to change the attitudes of a generation in fact. Still, whenever I hear LKJ I believe every syllable he speaks – Sounds so easy to say but it is the hardest thing in the world.