25 giugno 2016

E a proposito di alterazioni, Marcus O'Dair scrive del rapporto di Robert Wyatt con l'alcool in uno speciale numero del periodico Popular Music, edito da Cambridge University Press, facendo tesoro delle molte dichiarazioni (anche) sul tema raccolte nella preparazione di Different Every Time: ‘Pardon me, I'm very drunk’: alcohol, creativity and performance anxiety in the case of Robert Wyatt.

Robert Wyatt's relationship with alcohol is multifaceted. He acknowledges its deleterious effect on aspects of his personal life, most notably on his relationship with wife and creative partner Alfreda Benge, and he has been teetotal since attending Alcoholics Anonymous in 2007–8. In professional terms, however, Wyatt continues to view alcohol positively: as a means to overcome anxiety as a performer and recording artist and as an aid to writing. From this perspective, the fact that Wyatt has not released a solo album since sobering up may be more than mere coincidence. This paper aims to answer two questions. First, what is the evidence that alcohol can reduce anxiety for a performer and recording artist, and increase creativity for a songwriter? Secondly, what is the evidence that this is so in Wyatt's specific case? In answering these questions, the author Marcus O'Dair draws on secondary research, as well as interviews conducted with Wyatt and various associated musicians and family members between 2008 and 2013.

Popular Music is an international multi-disciplinary journal covering all aspects of the subject - from the formation of social group identities through popular music, to the workings of the global music industry, to how particular pieces of music are put together. The journal includes all kinds of popular music, whether rap or rai, jazz or rock, from any historical era and any geographical location. Popular Music carries articles by scholars from a large variety of disciplines and theoretical perspectives. Each issue contains substantial, authoritative and influential articles, shorter topical pieces, and reviews of a wide range of books.