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Billy Milk
Billy Milk
2045 posts

lady june's linguistic leprosy
Mar 29, 2007, 09:38
good news for canterbury heads:

June Campbell Cramer



Lady June’s Linguistic Leprosy


(70s poetry pleaser reissued with news notes and images)

First released in 1974 on Caroline Records, Lady June’s totally individual recording ‘Linguistic Leprosy’ features the work of Kevin Ayers, Brian Eno and Pip Pyle amongst Canterburyluminaries of the day. Produced and mixed by Kevin Ayers except ‘Tunion’ mixed by Brian Eno & Kevin Ayers. ‘Touch Downer’ mixed by

David Vorhaus. Conjoining music, poetry with visual art was a logical step in the climate of the early 70's.  And when not gigging or exhibiting, ‘Lady’ June Campbell-Cramer - writer, painter, sculptress, and eccentric – travelled.


Her frequent trips around the Mediterranean were to take June into the orbit of Soft Machine's Kevin Ayers and Daevid Allen, and all were to be fellow passengers on the burgeoning hippy scene of Mallorca, where both she and Ayers were to buy homes.


1974 saw the first performances of June’s 'Uppers and Downers' show in Amsterdam, the poems from which would form the basis of ‘Linguistic Leprosy'. The book was published by Virgin Books in 1975. Virgin’s Caroline label homed the audio equivalent.  In keeping with the label ethos, the album was delightfully unfettered by hype, personality or commercialism. 


Whilst a creation of the pooled talents June’s musician friends, the larger part of the music and production of the album fell to Ayers, whose career was at its most commercially successful. He had a new album, ‘The Confessions Of Dr Dream’, and a switch to Island Records, which also released a live set (‘June 1st 1974) by Ayers together with label mates, Brian Eno, Nico (who guested on ‘Dr Dream’) and her former Velvet Underground colleague, John Cale.


In contrast to the pressures of a career within a mainstream channel, the gentle approach of 'Linguistic Leprosy' saw Ayers, surrounded by his oldest friends, relaxed and enjoying himself. Ayers wrote most of the music settings to June’s poems, exceptions being Eno's music for 'Optimism' and Kim Solomon's tune for 'Am I'.


Recording was done in synthesizer virtuoso David Vorhaus' Kaleidophon studio in Camden High Street, London. The album itself is an extraordinary melange of semi-spoken pastiche and nonsensical nursery rhyming. The diversity of June's vocal delivery is matched throughout the album by a delightful array of musical soundscapes.


In addition to Ayers’ trademark melodies and arrangements, a percussive storm swells and erupts from the muted heartbeat of 'Everythingsnothing' whilst the most delicate of pianos twists almost inaudibly through the strange images of ‘The Letter'. There are echoes of Ayers’ ‘The Oyster and The Flying Fish' in 'Mangel / Wurzel’ and the rumble of his beloved calypso can be heard in 'Bars', with Pip Pyle on drums.


Brian Eno's influence is strong particularly on the short 'Optimism' and the longer, Gong-like meanderings of Tunion', the latter combining a foretaste of Eno's later 'ambient' music with a hypnotic space whisper where voices blend eerily and inseparably into the language of the synthesizer.


David Vorhaus mixed the final ‘Touch Downer' around a whispered tape loop that will surprise headphone listeners with its strange subliminal harmonies.

The album proved one of Caroline’s Records most successful releases, selling its entire ‘limited edition’ run of 5,000 and lending it subsequent collectable status.  


This reissue on Market Square re-presents these timeless recordings together with revised booklets notes by Ayer’s archivist Martin Wakeling and personal and humorous recollections of June (1931 -1999) by surviving relative Tim Cramer Todd. Timeless beyond its genesis, the originality of this work together with its Canterburyconnections have ensured the collectable status of “Lady June's Linguistic Leprosy”.


Track Listing

 1. Some Day Silly Twenty Three 2. Reflections 3. Am I 4. Everythingsnothing 5. Tunion 6. Tourist 7. Bars

8. Letter 9. Mangel/Wurzel 10. To Whom It May Not Concern 11. Optimism 12. Touch Downer

Release Date: April 24th 2007Label: Market Square(Mid Price Series)

Catalogue: Number MSMCD144 Distributor: Proper Music Distribution
The Seth Man
The Seth Man
1163 posts

Yeah, but
Mar 30, 2007, 16:59
How are they gonna reproduce the lyric insert?

It was perforated and looked like a sheet of blotter acid. (Apparently.)
Deepinder Cheema
Deepinder Cheema
1973 posts

Re: Yeah, but
Apr 01, 2007, 03:03
I believe there is a japanese CD release with this detail (predates this release)
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