Marc Almond is a much travelled singer who is probably best known for ‘Tainted Love’ the Gloria Jones northern soul classic he covered with Soft Cell in the early 1980s. It was a huge hit but he was always more of an experimenter than a mainstream singer. His high slightly frail voice worked perfectly with the electonic dance/pop sounds but he was equally at ease with performing Jacques Brel tunes or covering Brecht, Edith Piaf or Frankie Valli. His collaborations are equally broad varying from Russian folk musicians to Nick Cave, PJ Proby, Siouxsie Sioux and Gene Pitney to name just a few.
When I met him he was at the tiny west London offices of indie label Some Bizarre promoting his latest solo work ‘Mother Fist & Her Five Daughters’. He was good humoured and didn’t have the pretentions of being a highly successful artist. The small record labels were often beneficial for artists who didn’t need to have their egos massaged all the time. The difference between them and the large majors where assistants are constantly pandering to their artists’ needs is a stark contrast. It can often be heard in the music and is one of the reasons why so many of the large labels are now struggling to survive.