Iain Cameron's Diary
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2004-07-09 - 7:27 a.m.

I drove up to Speke but missed my turning on the M56 and so arrived a little late. In fact I took a wrong turning just after the Runcorn-Widnes bridge on the way back and had to go down the M62. I blame the weather – there was a lot of surface water on the roads, quite high winds, heavy traffic. Most of the attention goes on keeping away from other vehicles. It is quite tiring esp after driving the previous evening from London through very heavy weather.

I missed part of Keith’s presentation – and then plugged in my PC and did my own. It was a better audience than I thought there might be – VW, GM, LDV and PAG – plus LSC and SEMTA . I wont even make a joke about it.

I was mostly listening to Ms Nyro esp the two live CDs from the early 90s – and I went back over the original Walk the Dog which gave a better focus on the arrangements after the piano and vocal versions. I also listened to the first album which will take more work. The odd thing about this album is the tracks that you are surprised to see there like He’s a Runner and Buy & Sell were done first. These two are on the tribute CD and because of their depth and poise you think they must be late works – but no – they come right at the beginning.

Anyway besides the calming effects on LN I stopped on the M6 and on the way back opened up the Totton collection circa 1976. Crudely put I am interested in the transition from the analytic pastoral that gets written in Cambridge to the rougher imagistic Gothic stuff that gets written in the mid 70s. You can see this shift all over – 5ll to PM, in Paul’s writing between the early John Martyn stuff and the Ghosts material and even in some of P Ackroyd’s.

So I was casting around in the Totton volume to see what might surface and I came across a couple of poems from I Ching hexagrams including one on Nourishment. Totton takes this in the very general direction of Inside/Out – the album after Solid Air. This reminded me that this one crops up in Regan von Schweitzer’s I Ching workbook – as does the subject of the next poem in the collection – Biting Through.

Totton Gothicises the internal dramas as evidences of the external conflicts, tricks and misplaced confidences – and offers a deeper picture about 20 years later in Water in the Glass which is not poetry but theory. Regan’s hexagrams were cast more contempaneously with that volume.

In one of the Cambridge-poetry poems there’s some remark that someone is always eating or coming out of a cake shop. Of course Hoggwarts is a very gothic college – explains Dr Wells but does it explain me?

I got back and wrote some stuff for the Tony Reif Songlines 1948 CD which is appearing in the UK before long and bounced that off a few people. Robin Federick was very helpful in her prompt reply and I have just mailed back a bit more about Know.

Paul’s son is getting married this weekend and so he may well not get a chance to comment for a bit – then he as an Eastern European client.

I decided to take the advice and splash out £2 on fresh squeezed orange juice on the M6. Reminded of Southern California.

Peter says he has digitised the Magic vid – do we go for permissions or just put it out? I sent him the Taxi URL.

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