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Paul Haines

Born in Vassar, Michigan in 1932, Paul Haines was stationed in Germany during the Korean War and later lived in Paris, New York, New Mexico and New Delhi before settling in Canada. The musicality of Haines’s writing is especially exemplified on Darn It! (American Clave, 1994). Performing Paul’s poems is an eclectic cast of musicians including British jazz improvisers Evan Parker and Derek Bailey, John Tchicai, Big Star singer Alex Chilton, Cream frontman Jack Bruce, Canadian chanteuse Mary Margaret O’Hara, Toronto visual artist/pianist Michael Snow and Plunderphonics creator John Oswald. Paul’s poems became music by Memphis genre-benders Curlew on their album A Beautiful Western Saddle, named one of the best albums of the 1990s by Downbeat Magazine. He most famously wrote the libretto for American composer Carla Bley’s 1971 double-album masterpiece Escalator Over the Hill, described as ‘a who’s who of both free jazz and rock’ in Rolling Stone magazine and ‘a monumental, Herculean work’ in the Village Voice. The Bley/Haines follow-up, Tropic Appetites (1974) was well received in jazz circles. Paul died in 2003.

Books By Paul Haines