Does an album’s artwork change the way you hear the music inside? Does it even matter any more? Tyrone and Lesley don’t do ‘merch’. They do art. Generally one or other of our records has been hard to get hold of. Now, for the first time, Tyrone and Lesley’s complete works (so far) are available in hard copy at selected gigs.
Keen observers will notice each of these albums has carried through the unique stamp of Tyrone and Lesley’s music into its graphic art by utilising… a unique (rubber) stamp for its cover design. Like this one.
Each item, simple as it is, is hand-constructed. I like the idea of T & L’s no-frills handmade stuff being out there in digital land: places like iTunes and spotify need a human touch. This particular compendium of realia contains some bonus items. Haikulele.
Music’s very easy to find in the digital domain, and that can be wonderful, but stuff like this is harder to obtain. I treasure it when I find it, so I make it too. In this anthology there’s three albums, an illustrated songbook and an original ‘Haikulele’. The is a new poetry form invented by Tyrone, though its innovation is typically unsurprising: it’s a haiku about the ukulele, which he first explored in his crowdfunding adventures. The mysterious poetry of the obvious. Very Tyronesque.
It’s a limited edition of five, which are likely to be sold at the Melbourne Ukulele Festival. I thought I’d collect the poetry component here. Each of these haikulele is original and rendered through vintage carbon paper and typewriter and autographed with joined-up-writing.
Most of the spoken text in Tyrone and Lesley’s concert/performance Bear with Me is written in English haiku, though these poems are unrelated to that show. This old-fashioned, hand-made approach means each record is made with love, rather like the music contained therein. Individual imperfections are part of what makes them special. These will find homes soon, and they’ll be gone. So I do hope people go off and write their very own Haikulele.