While Jeanette Leech was writing her fab folk book … Rob Young was working on another excellent volume – not just about folk: “Electric Eden – unearthing Britain’s visionary music” (Faber && Faber 2010-08-05, ISBN 9780571237524). I haven’t finished reading it yet but it’s a real treasure trove of information, making it an impossible task to list the acts he brings into view. (Kevin Ayers, David Bowie, Joe Boyd, Anne Briggs, Vashti Bunyan, Shirley Collins, Donovan, Nick Drake, Fairport Convention, Bill Fay, Forest, Fotheringay, Roy Harper, (Mike) Heron, the Incredible String Band, Bert Jansch, Kaleidoscope [UK], John Martyn, Mellow Candle, Mighty Baby, Mr Fox, Parchment, Pentangle, Pink Floyd, John Renbourn, Soft Machine, Steeleye Span, Traffic, Trees ànd Talk Talk have been dealt with, of course. Surprisingly, Michael Chapman, Fresh Maggots, Mushroom and Tractor hardly get a mention.) On pages 512 & 513, for instance, Mr. Young describes the (three album) legacy of UK folk act Spirogyra (mainly Martin Cockerham & Barbara Gaskin) … Don’t confuse them with the US fusion jazzers Spyro Gyra who debuted in 1978!
Update: Rob Young has compiled an “Electric Eden – Unearthing Britain’s Visionary Music” v/a 2cd (midprice via UMC)!