It’s nice and sunny today and that always makes me think of World Music.
The first time I remember coming across the term “world music” when I bought the album New Roots in 1989. It was a very well-planned album as it had a number of artists that I already knew and liked (Billy Bragg, Michelle Shocked, The Pogues) alongside a number of names that were new to me. Looking at the track listings I found that a number of the interesting new names were from a record label that I’d never heard of – Cooking Vinyl.
Investigating further, I found another compilation called Hootenanny which was produced by Cooking Vinyl to showcase their artists. The cassette version of that which I bought is possibly one of the most played recordings that I’ve ever owned. Over the next fifteen years listening to Cooking Vinyl records has introduced me to some of the most interesting music that I’ve ever heard. At one point I was even signed up for a subscription service where they automatically sent you a copy of each CD they released (I only left that service because they withdrew it).
So yesterday I pulled out all of my old Cooking Vinyl compilations and started ripping them and listening to them. I was surprised to see how few of them I was missing – and a quick visit to the Cooking Vinyl shop filled most of the holes. Unfortunately, my original copy of Hootenanny went in the Great Cassette Massacre of 2003 and I can’t find a copy for sale anywhere. I’d love to get my hands on a copy (tho’, to be honest, I probably have most of the tracks on other albums now).
It’s been a lot of fun listening to those albums again. I don’t listen to anywhere near enough world music. Thank you Cooking Vinyl for releasing them.