Hear that Long Lost Siren Song

US poet and songwriter Larry Beckett

US poet and songwriter Larry Beckett

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Celebrated US poet and songwriter Larry Beckett has joined forces with a Lancaster band for an extremely special gig in the city next month.

Beckett’s songs have been recorded by musicians all over the world.

He first wrote with Tim Buckley (father of Jeff Buckley) in the 1960s and 70s.

The pair co-wrote many era-defining classics including Honey Man, No Man Can Find the War, Goodbye and Hello and Song to the Siren, which was famously covered by Elizabeth Fraser of Cocteau Twins in the 1980s.

The song has since been covered by others, including Robert Plant, George Michael and Sinead O’Connor.

Beckett is also known in the US as a widely respected poet who has been writing, for more than 40 years, a series of long poems exploring the intersections of North American history, myth and song. He has also published a book about Beat poetry.

In early 2013 he started writing with Lancaster’s The Long Lost Band and they will be performing a special track called On the Hook, which was Buckley and Beckett’s very last song. Buckley was given the lyrics by Larry in early summer of 1975, but Tim died suddenly in June of that year, before the music was written.

Four decades later, The Long Lost Band were given the lyrics by Larry, and wrote the music in 2014, bringing the song to life.

At the LAWM-promoted night, Larry will read from his newly published epic poem Paul Bunyan, and join The Long Lost Band on stage, playing keyboards for performances of a whole collection of songs they have written together, including an ode to John Lennon, and a journey to a modern Babylon.

They will also perform Song to the Siren, which will include Larry’s short and powerful essay on how the classic song came to be.

Support on the night, at The Yorkshire House on June 27, comes from James Edge & the Mindstep, and Richard Turner.

For tickets go to www.wegottickets.com/event/311165

• LAWM stands for Little Argument With Myself (after a song by the band Low) and first started promoting gigs in Lancaster in 2006.

LAWM has specialised in a diverse range of music with a focus on folk/nufolk/indie/post-rock/weird/wonderful.

This night will be their first promotion in four years.

For some history see www.richardtwine.com/lawm