News Pop / Rock 08/06/2017

Now Into Its Third Year, Ben Watt's Spincycle Playlist Approaches 5,000 Followers And 500 Songs

Now Into Its Third Year, Ben Watt's Spincycle Playlist Approaches 5,000 Followers And 500 Songs

New York, NY (Top40 Charts) Artist-curated playlists may be all the rage, but one of the finest ones out there could well be SpinCycle on Spotify handpicked and tended by British singer-songwriter Ben Watt, formerly half of alt-pop UK duo Everything But The Girl and a long-respected DJ.

Begun in 2014, initially to accompany Watt's award-winning renaissance as a solo singer-songwriter, the regularly-updated mixtape now stands at almost 500 songs. Packed with multi-genre gems - new, old and obscure - it has quietly attracted a following of almost 5,000 dedicated listeners.

'I just wanted to create the perfect shuffle playlist,' he says, 'one where you never wanted to skip a track. I genuinely love everything on there. It's what I listen to all the time and totally reflects my taste. I am in my fifties now. I have listened to music passionately since the early seventies when I was a kid with a transistor radio, a jazz musician for a father and four older siblings with divergent record collections. When I was young I could hear Roland Kirk, Roy Harper and Roberta Flack all coming out of different rooms at the same time.'

As a musician, Watt first appeared in 1981 on London indie label Cherry Red as a young nineteen-year-old experimental songwriter-singer-guitarist. His breakthrough 5-track EP Summer into Winter in 1982 featured alt-folk icon Robert Wyatt. Within a year he had formed Everything But The Girl with singer-songwriter Tracey Thorn, but after sixteen years and nine million records sold as the duo, he turned to the underground electronic music scene for new inspiration.

'My time as a deep house DJ in the 2000s played to my love of crate-digging and the pleasure of the unexpected find, but it was very narrow and genre-specific,' Watt goes on. 'With my return to singer-songwriting and SpinCycle I guess I have gone back to the wider and more exotic influences of my youth.'

Recent choice additions to Watt's infinite mixtape - which currently has ten tracks added every couple of weeks - include new and vintage cuts by Cate Le Bon, Khalid, Television and Dion. They join delicious already-curated obscurities by Brazilian folk-rocker Terry Winter, Hawaiian slack-key guitarist Ledward Kaapana, country crooner Sammi Smith and many more.

Ben Watt's SpinCycle can be found at
(Watt's most recent solo album, Fever Dream, featuring Bernard Butler, Hiss Golden Messenger and Marissa Nadler was released in 2016. It followed 2014's award-winning comeback, Hendra. He is currently writing material for a new album slated for the second half of 2018.)

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