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Baker's Dozen

“Yes It’s F*cking Political!”: Skin's Favourite Albums
Louise Brown , March 13th, 2019 10:52

Skunk Anansie vocalist Skin guides Louise Brown through 13 favourite records, from Holst to Nina Simone, Everything But The Girl, Sepultura and Amy Winehouse


Carole King – Tapestry
Tapestry has got to be one of my all time favourite records. You know, everybody knows it. It's huge but every fucking song. Every. Fucking. Song. The stories from story to story story to story. As a songwriter, as someone who likes vocals but likes to have something to say within the vocals, for me this is one of the greatest albums of all time. I've listened to it since I discovered it, at least a few times a year. In many ways it's a backing singer's album. I'm always singing along.

I discovered Tapestry at University, but I grew up with soul and so I knew some of those songs. That's when I found out Carole had a voice for everybody. And she wrote for everybody, hit after hit. Tapestry was basically her coming out. I mean it's crazy when you know the songs that she wrote. These little vignettes of heartbreak. That's my philosophy. You know, the songs you write at 4 o'clock in the morning, that's how I wrote 'Hedonism'. It was the worst fucking evening and afternoon of my life and I ended up somewhere crying at 4 o' clock in the morning and I just sung "I hope you're feeling happy now". And some subconscious thing said write that down. Paul McCartney used to say you just used to remember songs, you know. There's no recording, you didn't have a little dictaphone. And then next day you went over to someone else's to jam and say 'I've got this song'. And that's where the song came from. And that's for me, that authenticity, in that cathartic way is where the best songs I've written come out of. And that's why I love Carole King because once you know her life and you understand, it was all about the storytelling. Everything used to be a story. That's why those songs still connect now. Now songs just need to be a beat and a groove, a bit of a hook, but this is proper songwriting to me.