The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website

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


Otis Redding – Otis Blue
That album has been through just about every heartbreak in my life, of which there have been many. At the time one of my biggest heartbreaks was hearing on the radio that Otis had died. That was so shocking to me. That this voice, which was just so wonderful... I mean those songs! There was something in those songs that just broke my heart. Yeah, ‘I've Been Loving You Too Long’, he co-wrote that. Oh my God that is such a wonderful song. No 'A Change Is Gonna Come' was Sam Cooke’s song, of course. But these songs were just so beautiful and the way that he held these notes, I mean nowadays soul music and R&B doesn't feel like it's my music, it feels manufactured, it feels like it's a vocal workout sometimes, like callisthenics of the tonsils, but with him he had this way of playing with a note, like all good soul and gospel music singers do.