Judee Sill – The Kiss (1973)
As well as catching up on the classics of British post-war cinema, I also use my holidays to catch up on my mountain of unread books and my parallel mountain of CDs that deserve to be listened to more often.
In the last three days, I’ve read William Styron’s remarkable account of his battle with depression (“Darkness Visible“), an interesting assessment of whether mild to moderate depression might actually be beneficial from an evolutionary perspective (“How Sadness Survived” by Paul Keedwell) and, ahem, Steve Hanley’s wonderful account of his life as the bass player in The Fall (“The Big Midweek“) – one of the best insider accounts of the world of modern music you will ever read!
I’ve also re-stumbled upon my Judee Sill CDs via seeing a stunning performance from her on an old edition of The Old Grey Whistle Test.
Described by (whispering) Bob Harris as coming across as somewhat like a rather severe librarian, Judee Sill’s live performance of “The Kiss” ends up being one of the most extraordinary recordings ever to grace the hallowed studios of the BBC. Taken from her second, and final, LP Heart Food, “The Kiss” features piano with a nod to Bach and vocals with a nod to heaven.
Born in 1944, she died of a drug overdose in November 1979. Her father died of pneumonia when she was 8 and her mother died when she was 18. Judee Sill was the first artist signed to David Geffen’s Asylum record label in the early 1970s and she released two sublime LPs. This is as good as music gets.