Roy Harper – Another Day

One of the most beautiful love songs ever written with a perfect production. David Bedford’s strings are so brilliantly arranged that they really augment the performance.

I was twice privileged.

I was among the first to hear it performed. At that time I was going to every gig I could get to – and that was most of them – two or three a week. When he introduced it into his act I was there.

‘Another Day’ knocked me out the minute I heard it. He won’t like me saying but I remember thinking at the time that the warble in his voice sounded a bit Donovanish. The song instantly quietened the audience. They were rapt. Everyone recognised that it was special right from the off.

Those early gigs were such a range of contrasting songs. Roy had his rousing songs of anger and fury, like ‘Whiteman’, which he sang with great passion, he had his zany humorous pieces, like ‘Feeling all the Saturday’, which he peppered the gig with, he had instrumentals like ‘One for Al(l)’ and he had these haunting love songs like ‘Another Day’. Perfect.

He never used a setlist back then. He intuitively moved from one to another, with lengthy diatribes, discussions, observations, explanations and comments in-between, as the mood suited – altering the tempo and feel of the gig accordingly. Those gigs were often up to three hours long and sometimes a third of them would be Roy talking. I enjoyed the talking as much as the playing. Roy shared. It wasn’t your standard performance. If it came into his head it came out of his mouth. There were humour, wry observation and all manner of asides.

I was also there in Abbey Road studio when Roy recorded it. I remember watching him from the control room willing it to be perfect. It was. I don’t remember David Bedford and the strings though. That must have been added later.

‘Another Day’ is still one of my favourite songs these fifty years on.

I felt like I’d been fortunate enough to witness history being made.

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