Speechification Vol.005


Richard Dawson's 2020

If you’ve missed the first four volumes of Speechification then further context can be found elsewhere, specifically here (for Volume #1), here (for Volume #2), here (for Volume #3), and here (for Volume #4).

To be honest I’m stretching the point a little with this one as it’s been instigated by the heartening news of a new record from Richard Dawson and reverse engineered to fit from there on in. Still, given that it’s unlikely that anyone is going to argue the point I’ll carry on regardless.

The record in question is Jogging, the first single from Richard’s new album 2020, and is seven(ish) brilliant minutes that prove the point that “the magical can sit next to the mundane”.

2020 comes out later this year, so if Mr Dawson is new to you I’d suggest that in the meantime you head over to his previous solo album Peasant, released in 2017, and Mogic an album from the band Hen Ogled whose line up features Richard (alongside Sally Pilkington, Dawn Bothwell and Rhodri Davies) which came out in late 2018. Both these records come very highly recommended

Anyway, to the radio.

New Weird Britain
The first piece, is in fact (once again) several pieces, namely the four episodes of Luke Doran’s investigation into the “radical music being made in the margins” of New Weird Britain. Richard Dawson doesn’t actually make an appearance until the third episode on Post-Industrial Towns – however the other three are well worth your time too so I’ve included them for the completists.

Pleasingly the first of the four opens in my hometown of King’s Lynn with Cosey Fanni Tutti, which is marginally confusing though not the most confusing thing featured in these episodes, “I’m sitting in a wood panelled old studio in Swansea, watching the sound artist Lee Patterson burning a hazelnut.”

There’s a great deal to investigate further from these programmes if you choose to, and while I’ve started to dig a little deeper than I would normally there’s plainly still plenty more to unearth.

The Voices of… Richard Dawson
Next is an episode from Radio 4’s The Voices of…
 series which sees presenter Alan Hall interview a somewhat anxious and reluctant Dawson who gently deflects the questions asked of him towards Trouble the cat, a cat who he considers an “ancient”, albeit one that he didn’t realise would “vomit so much around the house”.

It’s a shame that the programme only has thirty minutes to spend with him because I’m sure that further time invested would be rewarding for all concerned.

Late Junction
And finally, after a great deal of talking about music an actual proper tune. This is (I think*) from an appearance Richard made on BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction some time ago, and is a version of The Bamburgh Beast from his album The Magic Bridge released back in 2011. It’s a bit good.

*poor labelling on my part so I may be wrong.

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