12. The Bahamas — ‘Happy all the time’ by Joseph Spence
This album was recorded in Joseph Spence’s living room — it shows, and that’s not a bad thing.
I’m not sure I was expecting this sound from the Bahamas. I’m not sure what I was expecting at all, to be fair. But this is quite unique, a strange little album, that as the title implies, is full of a strange, confident sense of happiness.
I had never heard of Joseph Spence, but apparently, he was admired by such famous guitarists as Ry Cooder. It seems some people struggle to believe that it was just one player, as his guitar picking is quite dense and full at times. He was obviously a very gifted musician, but the whole thing seems so light, he’s having so much fun, that there is not a trace of a ‘look at me’ attitude.
You feel he’s not recording an album, but that somebody is recording him whilst he’s out on his porch having a drink and improvising. There is a freedom that is very specific, an apparent carelessness that is only swallowed by his talent. Very good and perfect for warm summer evenings.