Dispatch - Roddy Woomble

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  • 20 December 2006

The Dispatch

Roddy Woomble might not have a finger on the pulse but he knows what he likes. And he likes Eddie Hinton.

Generally I have no idea what’s going on around me, in terms of new books, film and albums. There was a time, when I was 19 or 20 when I knew what record was coming out on any number of record labels, what was going to be great, the next new thing etc. Same with films. As a fledging film student, I’d read up the literature, and knew all the movements of my favourite directors, scriptwriters and actors. That’s not to say I’ve entirely lost touch; at least I hope I haven’t. I suppose I’m lucky in the sense that a lot of my friends and other people in my orbit keep me in touch with recommendations. In fact, as I type, I’m sifting through ten CDs of old soul and country sent to me by the photographer Tom Sheehan, a veritable encyclopedia of hard to find gems. Eddie Hinton is a new favourite, although I doubt he’ll be on any ‘hot for 2007’ lists (maybe if it was 1967?).

I spent a lot of last year listening to folk music, Julie Fowlis and Kris Drever being two revelations. I also really enjoyed records by Vetiver, Cat Power, The Raconteurs, and my musical hero, Bob Dylan. Assuming none of the above will be putting out an LP in 2007, I’m hoping to hear some new music from Wilco, The White Stripes, and, fingers crossed, John Prine. As far as new bands go, I’ll be honest and say that I don’t really care.

I’m too old for new rave. Usually I’ll read interviews with groups, think they sound interesting, and then get their records and find them dull. Not to be negative, though - there’s always a hope that a new Strokes, or Queens of the Stone Age are just around the corner. There’s a British musical tradition in constantly searching for something new. The downside of this is that every year so many brilliant things get overlooked. It’s like taking the motorway instead of going on the scenic route. It’ll get you where you’re going quicker, but you’d notice so much more if you took your time. I’m all for slowing things down a bit.

But here’s hoping that the next 12 months throws us some wonderful records, films, poetry and novels. There’s certainly enough out there that needs describing.

Roddy plays Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on Wed 24 Jan and Idlewild play ABC, Glasgow, Tue 23 Jan both as part of Celtic Connections.

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