Robert Wyatt — Little Red Robin Hood - A Documentary
(boid v-boid 1, 1998, VHS)
by Jeff Melton, Published 2000-10-01
It’s extremely rare, in fact downright impossible to make a film regarding any prominent Canterbury music figure. That’s the prime reason this documentary on Robert Wyatt is such a precious treasure. Leave it two Italians, (Franco Di Loreto and Carlo Bevilacqua) to capture the icon at home and in the studio by presenting a bit of the man in his own environment. From Hugh Hopper’s initial recollections of the old Soft Machine days to many other luminaries waxing poetic (including Chris Cutler, Keith Tippett, Carla Bley, Elvis Costello and even Jimi Hendrix bassist Noel Redding). The life and music of the first drummer, then vocalist composer have had many peaks and valleys. Wyatt’s own testimonial to seeing Thelonius Monk live is interspersed with images of city subway. Brian Eno’s confirmation of Wyatt’s cheerful creativity is nothing short of uplifting. The only confounding information is BBC’s refusal to air film as an ode to a national hero regardless of politics. Although filmed in black and white the tone is more colorful than any label sponsored focus on VH1 that’s for certain. Nick Mason even recounts the early parallels of Pink Floyd and the early Softs (people forget he produced Rock Bottom). If you’re a fan, you’re entitled to search out this video to lock in on artist at work; if you’re not then welcome to the best introduction you can find.
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more