Sunday, January 29, 2012
Roy Harper: One of Those Days in England
Roy Harper is an artist who gets many passing mentions in Rob Young's Electric Eden, but never a paragraph to himself. Yet Alex Petridis in the Guardian recently called him "the most original, and the most underrated of the singer-songwriters who followed the 60s folk boom".
Here he is on The Old Grey Whistle Test with a song that owes much to the 1960s, though the lyrics - "One of those days in England with the country goin' broke" - certainly belong to the economic problems of 1977. This was a year when we almost won Eurovision with a number called "Rock Bottom".
Harper's best-known song is probably "When an Old Cricketer Leaves the Crease". He sang in on Test Match Special last summer, and if you explore the later segments of that View from the Boundary interview you will come across the unlikely juxtaposition of Aggers and the trashing of hotel rooms.