Derek Bailey, To Play: The Blemish Sessions (samadhisound). Derek Bailey,guitarra eléctrica e acústica. Gravado no Moat Studio, Londres, a 18 de Fevereiro de 2003, resulta da colaboração pedida por David Sylvian, que interpelara o guitarrista no sentido de o provocar artisticamente enquanto cantor. Da sessão de Fevereiro de 2003 Sylvian escolheu três temas para incluir no CD Blemish (The Good Son; She is Not; e How Little We Need to be Happy). To Play: The Blemish Sessions é composto pelo remanescente do trabalho encomendado por Sylvian, à excepção de um tema comum a Blemish.
«As fate would have it this was to be the last solo studio session Derek was to record before the onset of illness,” recalls Sylvian. “That might make the session valuable in itself but it’s the quality of the work that’s outstanding. The conversational quality, the apparent ease of facility in that ongoing search for what remains elusive. You witness up close the struggle and fluency, frustration and facility. It’s an intriguing dichotomy illustrated so beautifully on this recording. I’m reminded of the title of that Bill Evans recording Conversations with Myself. This is an external manifestation of one man’s internal dialogue. A struggle for eloquence using all the considerable skills at his disposal. Always attempting to push beyond the confines of the vocabulary, even one self-invented for this very purpose. That quixotic mission necessarily accompanied by plenty of humor and self-deprecation. A means of getting oneself out of the way, of not taking oneself too seriously but dedication to the process for it’s own sake perhaps?”
To Play’s title was suggested by writer/musician and longtime friend of Bailey’s, David Toop, after hearing the recordings, which he says are among his favourite solo recordings of the artist. Toop explains: “after my last face to face conversation with Derek, I was so struck by his emphasis on ‘just playing’ as a deep philosophy at the core of his work, and some of the anecdotes of his early life, that I thought of writing a stage play. My idea was that Derek would play within the play. I suggested this to him and he seemed agreeable, at least. The idea came to nothing, partly because of other commitments and partly because I don’t have a great love for most theatre and so couldn’t seem to get started on it, but I still like this word Play (much Beckett in there) in relation to Derek’s activity.
To play might mean: to do it now, as you are; to improvise, to use what is at hand; to enter into a game, not just to act according to someone else’s set of rules, but to invent processes, ways of doing things, protocols; to imagine new ways of being together, of proceeding. Derek Bailey did not fuck this up»