Little Fluffy Clouds

Album: The Orb's Adventures Beyond the Ultraworld (1990)
Charted: 10
  • The Orb is a British ambient house group founded by British musician Dr. Alex Paterson and KLF member Jimmy Cauty. After Cauty left in 1990, Paterson assumed lead role. The group achieved six Top 20 hits in the UK in the mid 1990s and helped popularize the Chill Out music genre.
  • This ambient pop song was a collaboration with Killing Joke's Martin "Youth" Glover, who later teamed up with Paul McCartney on the former Beatle's Fireman project, (check out "Don't Stop Running").
  • This was originally released in 1990 as a single on the Big Life independent record label. After several re-releases the song finally peaked at #10 in the UK in 1993.
  • Lyrically, the song is centered around clips of an interview by Levar Burton, best known as Kunta Kinte in Roots, where musician Rickie Lee Jones talks dreamily of the fluffy clouds in the Texan skies of her childhood. Their conversation was taken from the PBS-TV children's program Reading Rainbow. Jones later said in interviews that the odd nasal tonality of her voice was the result of a heavy cold. Also incorporated is a guitar figure from American minimalist composer Steve Reich's "Electric Counterpoint," as recorded by Pat Metheny, and a harmonica sample from Ennio Morricone's "The Man With The Harmonica" from the soundtrack of the 1968 spaghetti Western Once Upon a Time in the West.
  • Rickie Lee Jones was not pleased when she heard her voice sampled on this track; she and Big Life settled out of court with her for an undisclosed sum.
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments: 1

  • Valo from Moscow, Russia FederationAll these three samples were taken by The Orb without permission. But all of the artists liked the track a lot (especially Rickly Lee and Steve Reich) so they decided not to sue
see more comments

QueenFact or Fiction

Scaramouch, a hoople and a superhero soundtrack - see if you can spot the real Queen stories.

Van Dyke ParksSongwriter Interviews

U2, Carly Simon, Joanna Newsom, Brian Wilson and Fiona Apple have all gone to Van Dyke Parks to make their songs exceptional.

Adam Duritz of Counting CrowsSongwriter Interviews

"Mr. Jones" took on new meaning when the song about a misguided view of fame made Adam famous.

Joan ArmatradingSongwriter Interviews

The revered singer-songwriter talks inspiration and explains why she put a mahout in "Drop the Pilot."

Country Song TitlesFact or Fiction

Country songs with titles so bizarre they can't possibly be real... or can they?

Vanessa CarltonSongwriter Interviews

The "A Thousand Miles" singer on what she thinks of her song being used in White Chicks and how she captured a song from a dream.