Sunday, July 12, 2015

Tim Booth and Angelo Badalamenti: I Believe

One of the more unlikely musical collaborations of the 1990s was that between Tim Booth and Angelo Badalamenti.

Booth from the bad James (via Shrewsbury School and the drama department at Manchester University) was part of the Madchester scene: Badalamenti was a composer best known for his work on David Lynch's films.

A James fansite tells the story of their collaboration:
Prior to 1990. Booth and Badalamenti had never heard of each other. That year, Booth fell in love with Julee Cruise's remarkable album of dream-songs, Floating Into the Night (music by Badalamenti and lyrics by Lynch) and was delighted to be asked, by the producer of Channel 4's Friday Night at the Dome, to choose a musician from anywhere in the world with whom he'd like to collaborate. 
For over a year the two men attempted to meet, with no joy, until a Paul McCartney recording session brought Badalamenti over to London on Concorde (the only way he'll cross the Atlantic). That night, James played at the venue formerly known as the Town & Country Club in London's Kentish Town. 
So this is the kid who's been leaving crazy messages on my answerphone, thought Angelo Badalamenti when they met backstage. 
Wow, he looks like a New York taxi driver, thought Tim Booth.
And adds in some enticing musical trivia:
In the year of Booth's birth, Badalamenti was teaching music and english in a New York school. He moved briefly to Woldingham in Surrey; began to write pop tunes; was told by Joe Meek that he had a glorious singing voice; went back to Brooklyn; penned hits for Melba Moore, Nancy Wilson and Nina Simone; scored dozens of movie soundtracks under the name Andy Badale; and wrote the superlative music for David Lynch's Blue Velvet, Wild at Heart and most famously of all, Twin Peaks.
This performance is from a Jools Holland show, with the rest of James also playing. But on the LP the guitar was played by Bernard Butler from Suede.

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