I first heard Golden Lady by Stevie Wonder when I was living in Sydney the first-time around.
I had walked into a music store whilst on a break from my job in an internet café and was so taken with the album they were playing whilst I was browsing that I bought it. That album was Innervisions by Stevie Wonder and it then took up a position of being played almost constantly during my shifts at Global Gossip (the internet café), along with a tape of Gilles Peterson’s old radio show on Kiss FM that I had brought with me to Australia.
Yes, a tape. It was a long time ago.
Golden Lady was the song off of that album I kept going back to, playing it on repeat, over and over and over again. There’s just something about it – from the slightly looping piano and bass that brings it in, to the uplifting chorus, to the slightly plaintive lyrics – it’s an incredible piece of music that has stuck with me ever since.
A lot has changed since I first walked into that CD store nearly 20 years ago (it’s probably closed down for a start). Those changes are highlighted perfectly by the way I found a re-edit of Golden Lady by a British musician called Scrimshire: I found it on Soundcloud whilst I was searching, via Sonos, for the original. I had given the the original CD to a charity store some years ago.
The changes are also rather neatly encapsulated by how I first discovered Scrimshire: he was one of the people I followed early into my time on Twitter. I can’t quite remember now how I came upon him – back in those early days (this was around 2007) it was probably via a recommendation as, in those days, I felt like I knew many of the people I followed.
It may have been because we were both on the old Mog music forum I used to spend hours on, which has since pivoted, and been subsumed into Apple Music, via acquisition by Beats by Dre.
Like I said, a lot has changed.
In the years since, Scrimshire has released three albums of his own music, released countless pieces by other people in his role as a record-label co-owner and built up an impressive collection of seriously funky re-edits of soul and funk classics. He’s been championed by Gilles Peterson, who now has a Tumblr dedicated to exactly the type of tape I used to listen to so much back in 1999 – unfortunately I’ve lost that one of him playing Josh Wink next to Horace Silver on Kiss FM in the early 90s.
See? Things have changed.
I no-longer see what Scrimshire is doing on Twitter because, well, I don’t really use it that much. Somehow it went the way of my CD collection and stopped playing a role in my life. It meant a lot to me but lost some utility and quite a bit of emotional connection along the way. Moving country, twice, particularly to one that meant the people I most wanted to hear from tended to be tweeting whilst I was in bed probably didn’t help.
But even though I no longer own a CD player, even though the internet café I worked in went the same way as the CD store I bought Innervisions in, though I now listen to my music on a phone rather than a Walkman (let alone an iPod), Golden Lady still sounds amazing, as does Scrimshire’s edit.
Because the more some things change, the more they stay the same.
Stevie Wonder image by Emanuele Rosso on flickr