We moved to the USA in 1994. This was a difficult move for all the usual reasons, missing family and friends, starting again in a new land. The biggest thing on my mind as we got off the plane though was that I would be missing Roy Harper playing Cropredy in a month or two.
This post however has nothing to do with Roy Harper though, even though I arrived in this country with a bunch of CD’s some books and every Roy Harper record on vinyl and three copies of Stormcock, an original pressing on the Harvest label, the reissue on Awareness and a CD that had just been released. All of these are now gone, the two l.p.’s stolen and I gave the CD to my wife’s cousin. I now do not have a copy apart from mp3 of my undeniably favorite album in a real solid physical format.
Again this post is not really about Roy Harper.
For about 8 or 10 years I immersed myself in the American dream, eating too much, working and not taking enough vacations and at times neglecting my family.
At this point in the story someone asked me had I ever heard Robyn Hitchcock, I admitted I had heard of but not anything by him. A CD of I Often Dream if Trains was thrust into my hand and then my discovery of that most English artist Robyn Hitchcock began.
I found myself in a world of crustaceans, hens, strange allusions to an England that should have existed, where Syd didn’t go crazy, The Move are accepted as the genius’s they are and Bowie is accepted as the true king of pop. It is ironic to me that this most English of performers was introduced to me as I found myself immersed in the American life. In one sense my sanity was saved by this most eccentric of performers. Hitchcock’s fascination with American life from the so English slightly amused angle taught me how to live here and stay sane. It really is a movie with a great soundtrack, all happening on the biggest of screens.
So here it is my first in a new series that I may keep doing depending in the vagaries of Spotify and my interest. The digital equivalent of the mix tape. My ten essential tracks of Hitchcock, including the Egyptians and solo, no what some would call the deep tracks just the ones I go back to again and again.
Yes I know I missed a lot but hey it is 10 songs not a box-set.