INTERVIEWS, REVIEWS & RELATED ARTICLES
Classic Pop FEBRUARY/MARCH 2015 - by Pierre Perrone
DIFFERENT EVERY TIME: THE AUTHORISED BIOGRAPHY OF ROBERT WYATT BY MARCUS O'DAIR
Being a popular music lecturer, broadcaster, writer of some scope, and a musician (one half of Grasscut) perfectly prepared O'Dair for the research involved in a project of this magnitude. From Brian Eno to Björk via Paul Weller and Julie Christie, everyone seems to have been happy to contribute to what at times reads like a history of the alternative British scene of the last fifty years. Wyatt's sublime 1974 album Rock Bottom and an unlikely cover of The Monkees classic I'm A Believer made him a cornerstone of Richard Branson's Virgin label. Starting with another cover, Chic's At Last I'm Free, taking in Stalin Wasn't Stallin', and then crossing over to the mainstream charts with Shipbuilding, Wyatt demonstrated that his uniqueness as an interpreter matched his originality as a composer. He says he only ever got eight bars right and is now a retired musician but this brilliantly detailed book, complete with exhaustive discography and index, does him and his wife and collaborator, Alfie, justice.