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Baker's Dozen

A Tower Of Songs: Sylvie Simmons' Favourite Music
Manu Ekanayake , August 13th, 2020 09:48

Like a gamekeeper turned poacher, rock journalist Sylvie Simmons has a new album of her own music out. Here she guides Manu Ekanayake through 13 lifelong inspirations, from Leonard Cohen to Johnny Cash, Miles Davis and Black Sabbath


The Incredible String Band – The Hangman’s Beautiful Daughter
In the 90s I moved to France with my then-husband, who’d written a hit song. We became tax exiles for a while. I would drive over there from London and I had this old car and everybody used to steal the CD player. So quite often there was no CD player and the drive was huge. I’d have to get to Dover to take the ferry over and then it was a 10 hour drive all the way down so there were certain albums I would sing from beginning to end. I immediately remembered the words "I hear that the Emperor of China used to wear iron shoes with ease" I mean, to me, this was like the songs I was writing on my guitar at that time, which were all really bad. They were just stuff from The Prophet and the other books you had to read at the time to be cool, so I loved them. Plus they all looked like hippies and I wanted to be a hippie so bad, but I was just a bit too young. I just loved the craziness of their music. It's almost like a form of jazz, but they go off in these completely massive chord jams and somehow they all managed to come back on the same note.