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David Stubbs - 11 Dec 2020


Reports confirmed that Harold Budd died on December 8th.

I met him just the once, at a concert in Leeds celebrating Bill Nelson's 70th birthday a couple of years ago. He and his girlfriend were there. They were planning a trip to London, a city she hadn't visited before. She was going to visit the sights, she said; Harold said he would "sit on my ass in a pub" while she did so. He was not terribly New Age-y in real life.

Budd's music represents a great addition for peace of mind, stability, perspective, stillness in this world for those who want it. The soundtrack to the adage that all of humanity's problems could be solved if we could simply learn how to sit alone in a room, or for that matter sit on your ass in a pub. His work with Eno I love because they complement each other so well, fill in what the other lacks alone. Eno provides the systems, the context, Budd the simple yet carrying lyric, those pianistic phrases speaking to the turbulent tranquility of the natural environment. RIP and thank you for the inkling of deep peace you brought to so many lives.

"Sad to hear of the passing of Harold Budd from Covid complications, aged 84. In 1999 I invited him, as one of the founding fathers of ambient music, to come over from California and play at The Big Chill at Larmer Tree. His lunchtime set at the piano was quirky and magnificent in so many ways. I remember him as a graceful gentle guy. I have some more photos of that occasion in a box in Devon which I must dig out sometime."  Pete Lawrence




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