When Bill died last year, I had the honor of helping organize the music for the funeral. A few days before, Sue handed me a large crate full of CD’s. These were the last Bill listened to before he made his own journey to the underworld. I had the notion that this music would make a good a playlist for the wake.
However as I sifted through the box of discs, slowly scanning them into my computer, I was struck by something; this might not work. Not due to the quality of the music, but because of the vast, intriguing, impressive and quite frankly bizarre contrast in musical styles. Within the collection of Bill oddities were albums by Anoushka Shankar, next to Leonard Cohen, or the Dutch theatre band Dogtroep followed by the soundtrack to The Third Man. What could these albums possibly have in common?
Well nothing. And everything.
Here is yet another true ‘Bill lesson” (and there are so many); collect everything! Always keep gathering for the great sketchbook or playlist in your mind, because it’ll all get used somewhere, someday. Whether you listen to a song, watch a film, read a book, experience a theatre show; it’s all part of the job as an artist. Be receptive.
Bill was the greatest magpie of all. The attic in his house is testament to that – a Zen like shrine full of stories and objects. Uncannily similar to the house of Hades…“All things return to Hades”
This show, 100: UnEarth, (like most Wild Works shows) touches on two very universal themes: love and death. Therefore, just like Bill, I took it upon myself to cast the net as wide as I could. Think local, think universal. And boy was it good fun! Whilst researching music for this piece, I’ve had a highly enjoyable journey through many continents and cultures. I haven’t possibly got the space to tell you all the inspirations but to name a few; I’ve listened to Methodist Hymns, Greek Rebetiko, Brazilian Samba, War Songs, Brian Eno, Turkish and Iranian laments, Bossa Nova, WW1 Marches, Mendelssohn, Les Baxter, Elgar, David Byrne, Joy Division, Cumbia, Barry White and strangely (you might not here it directly) the queen of emotionally charged music; Bjork.
I was 13 years old when I saw Souterrain at Dolcoath Mine in Redruth. I was hugely excited to be invited to compose for this reimagining of that show, but with added elements from the groundwork we laid down 4 years ago with 100: The Day Our World Changed. I’m very grateful to Adrian Freedman (the original composer) for his support, the WW family and of coarse Bill, who is still trusting and enabling people, even from beyond the grave.
Preciso Me Encontrar – Cartola
The Anchor Song – Bjork
Fake Cha Thiago – Franca
Eve Donus – Burhan Ocal Istanbul Oriental Orchestra
Yugure – Adrian Freedman
Don’t Want To Be Part Of Your World – David Byrne
Music For Airports – Brian Eno
It’s A Shame – Giannis Taopoulos & Giorgos Mitsakis
Elgar Cello Concerto – Jaqueline Du Pre
Love Will Tear Us Apart – Joy Division