with GARY NUMAN
“SONG FOR EWE” is the feature where artists & music people beloved by VELVET SHEEP choose an obscure song they’ve been listening to that day.
Today, it’s a proper music legend, and from my first hand experience an amenable fella. He doesn’t look like Robert DeNiro but he does fly a Mitsubishi Zero. Last year he re-released three classic albums, Tubeway Army’s “Replicas”, his debut solo “The Pleasure Principle” and “Telekon”. This year he’s working on his 21st album, that has been fan funded through Pledge Music and about to embark on a big American tour. Ever since “Are Friends Electric?” and “Cars” he’s made timeless electronic, sometimes alien music, and over more recent years his influence has been fully embraced by the likes of Nine Inch Nails, Depeche Mode and Battles who he lent his vocals to for their album “Gloss Drop”. It’s with principled pleasure I announce a “song for ewe” from Gary Numan!
As well as being mesmerised by “Cars” on TOTP as a youngling I was an avid aircraft enthusiast and used to go to airshows a ton in the mid 80s – early 90s (my Mum is still always proud to tell people I was the Aircraft Recognition Champion for the ATC in the London & South East Region). At said airshows, I’d often see Numan take to the air in his replica Mitsubishi Zero Japanese fighter plane and do aerobatics to the strains of Tubeway Army (and sometimes unfortunately Vangelis).
It made him an extra hero at the time.
I was lucky to meet Gary and his wife/manager (from nearby Sidcup!) at the MTV offices in Hawley Crescent in the late 90s. Gary was having a bit of a Trent Reznor inspired renaissance, it felt like he’d found his natural home again. He was relaxed and chatty and very knowledgeable when it came to choosing videos for an hour of MTV2 (I was their main producer at the time, and later Channel Manager). Often when you meet people you admire, you go off them, but in this instance it made me like him more.
When I saw the old albums being reissued last year, it was a punt but I asked if Gary would choose a “song for ewe”. To my surprise and thrill he did. And he’s still got his finger on the musical pulse.
So without further ado, it’s over to Gary for his “song for ewe”…
“Erie Lackawanna by Smoke Fairies. No video as such but you can listen to it and see a picture here:
Sad and yet strangely beautiful, something true of many Smoke Fairies songs actually, Erie Lackawanna sings the thoughts of a man near the end of life, as he looks back on it, and the house he’s lived in for most of it. Like all good songs it makes you think of your own life and, in this case, wonder about your own future.”
THANKS GARY. AND LUCY HURST, BUTILIKEYOUPR
You can contribute towards Gary’s new record here: