• Harri Lane

The most well circulated story about Paul and his involvement with the music industry in my experience would have to be how he came to meet Primal Scream. It's obviously of importance - as It's part of the larger tale of how the iconic imagery for some of their sleeves came to exist (most notably Screamadelica of course). In my research generally about Paul and more specifically for this project I've watched a lot of interviews with those involved in Primal Scream's success.

In a surprisingly large percentage of these interviews - Bobby Gillespie (of Primal Screa m fame) sits as he is interviewed by some sort of music radio show. They work through some questions and inevitably reach a question discussing Screamadelica's iconic imagery.

Chances are that Paul will only be briefly mentioned, but on a few occasions - Bobby will tell some form of the story I am about to tell, which has been corroborated by multiple parties (including Paul).

Paul was close friends with a man who ended up being a drummer for the band Flowered Up. This drummer would sometimes visit Paul's house and gaze in amazement at some of the paintings he had been working on (in Paul's words; He’d come round the house a few times and be freaked out by the paintings and stuff'). According to Paul, as soon as Flowered Up needed a sleeve - Paul was the man to do it. It was through working with Flowered Up that Paul met Jeff Barrett - formerly of Creation Records (Primal Scream's label) who had set up his own label called Heavenly Records (Flowered Up's label). Paul worked with Heavenly for about a year before somehow being introduced to Alex Nightingale (Primal Scream's manager) and making a transition over to Creation Records. I've stopped myself before I start to talk about Paul's studio at the Creation offices - because that's what I'm going to be chatting about next week.

But that's basically it - an overcomplicated simple story full of namedrops, but that is all it took from Paul to go from an unemployed painter to the creator of one of the most iconic pieces of music industry imagery of all time.

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  • Harri Lane

Updated: Aug 4, 2020

Here's a test piece by the talented @amoolia.s on Instagram. On her contribution to this project she said;

'I think his [Paul's] pieces are wonderfully spirited and animated so having them bleed through into a traditional painting would depict how his work literally affects an atmosphere that way As a physical experience, painting left handed and inspired by the artwork of children is wonderfully freeing compared to my usual style, it's an expression of true creativity which is unique to access and depict so purely as he did. The piece is as much of an experience as it is a final result as it is a tribute to an iconic creator.'

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  • Harri Lane

What many don't realize about the early 90s Primal Scream sleeves is that a lot of them came from two individual paintings. When Bobby Gillespie commissioned a piece from Paul for Higher Than The Sun they would cut different pieces and use them for individual singles, backs, covers and remixes. Higher Than The Sun is an interesting part to discuss in fact - as it ties in closely with the iconic Psychedelic Sun (Damp Water Spot) design - we'll be talking about that next week.

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