Obscure No. 5: Voices and Instruments – Jan Steele, John Cage (1976)



    Side A - Jan Steele

  1. All Day [lyrics by James Joyce, vocals by Janet Sherbourne]

    Bass Guitar – Steve Beresford
    Guitar – Fred Frith
    Guitar [Solo] – Stuart Jones
    Percussion – Phil Buckle (2)
    Vibraphone – Kevin Edwards (2)
    Voice – Janet Sherbourne


  2. Distant Saxophones

    Bass Guitar – Steve Beresford
    Flute – Jan Steele, Utako Ikeda
    Percussion – Arthur Rutherford
    Piano – Martin Mayes
    Viola – Dominic Muldowney


  3. Rhapsody Spaniel

    Piano – Jan Steele, Janet Sherbourne


    Side B - John Cage

  1. Experiences No. 1

    Piano [Duet] – Richard Bernas

  2. Experiences No. 2 [lyrics by E. E. Cummings, vocals by Robert Wyatt]
  3. The Wonderful Widow of Eighteen Springs [lyrics by James Joyce, vocals by Robert Wyatt]

    Percussion – Richard Bernas Voice – Robert Wyatt

  4. Forever and Sunsmell [lyrics by E. E. Cummings, vocals by Carla Bley]

    Percussion – Richard Bernas
    Voice – Carla Bley


  5. In A Landscape

    Piano [Solo] – Richard Bernas




LP released on Island Records, Obscure No. 5, 1976


Recorded At – Basing Street Studios
Producer – Brian Eno
Words By – E. E. Cummings (tracks: B2, B4), James Joyce (tracks: A1, B3) The compositional style of Side A is the result of work with the improvisation group F & W Hat, formed in 1972.
Brian Eno's Obscure Records label released only 10 albums during its existence from 1975 through 1978. Some of these have been reissued on CD (among them Eno's own 1975 masterpiece Discreet Music), but for some reason the album Voices and Instruments (Obscure No. 5, 1976) only exists on out-of-print vinyl. It is a very quiet and beautiful record, featuring three compositions by Jan Steele on one side, and five compositions by John Cage on the other side. Lyrics are by James Joyce and E. E. Cummings, performers include Jan Steele, Richard Bernas, Steve Beresford, Fred Frith, Robert Wyatt, and Carla Bley. It is not just mellow, it is avant-mellow...


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