Imagine a pitch for a new reality TV show. Massive Attack's Horace Andy and Xpress2's Ashley Beedle are locked in a studio for five days solid. The following week reggae legends Sly & Robbie are shut away with Detroit Soul master Amp Fiddler.
It may sound like the record aficionados' desperate attempt to win over Channel Four's reality programming panel. In fact, it's the rather natty idea from those left-leaning thinkers at Strut Records.
This Autumn, in a series called 'Inspiration Innovation' Strut are partnering some legendary and eclectic names from the world of music and locking them in the studio with an artist who has inspired them.
The collaborations involve an open A&R brief with the focus on spontaneity and stylistic fusion. The marketing-led restrictions of a traditional artist album are lifted in this all-too-rare brief.
The albums can take any form that the artists choose, from three-minute song structures to more extended freeform pieces. What they will come out with is something of a mystery, which adds to the excitement!
The series aims to keep styles and sounds fresh and to represent a snapshot of each artist's sound at the time of recording. Once each album is mixed, the promotional schedule will begin. The target is to have the albums in the shops within three months of recording.
There are three collaborations in total.
Horace Andy / Ashley Beedle Release - October 2008
Sly & Robbie / Amp Fiddler Release - October 2008
Mulatu Astatke / The Heliocentrics Release - January 2009
Keep 'em peeled!