Monday, June 20, 2016

Summery 


Death defying leap into summer. Image via andyliang.com



Here is a summery sextodecimo. The really unnecessary thing to do is explain why you included a bunch of songs in your summer playlist. There’s no Bieber, no Taylor Swift, and maybe that needs explaining (it doesn’t but whateve’s). Here’s to unnecessary explanations which is like most of the meetings I attend are like these days.

You Bring the Summer
This is a track from a new album from The Monkees. Yes those Monkees. Written by XTC’s Andy Partridge, this is exactly what I imagine being 12 in 1969 sounded like.

Mr. Blue Sky
So optimistically uplifting you’ll either be driven mad by its intonations or take out your newfound sunny feelings on a complete stranger.

I Will Give You Everything
I don’t know why I included this? Maybe it’s just the plaintiff plea for a lost love to return. Like my desperation for the sun to show up at any cost.

Miles From Nowhere
Now the better weather is here, I can only think of my far off escapes down country roads to nowhere in particular. Maybe just let your wandering heart lead the way and take Dirk Gently’s advice to follow someone who looks like they know where they are going. You won’t wind up where you wanted but somewhere you need to be.

Where is My Mind
A song about a wandering mind imagined as a drifting swimmer. Funny, because my mind was wandering to warm days of swimming and carelessly forgetting that things like clocks exist or that time can even be measured. Recently I went on a run and forgot to turn around. I forgot there was an end to the run. Somehow I ended up back home without knowing how I got there. My mind was still out there looking at the Don Valley.

Mothers of the Sun
I’m calling this album as the Polaris Prize winner of 2016. Also it fits nicely as a bitchin’ summer themed playlist.

Burn the Witch
It wouldn’t be a summer playlist without a Radiohead… oh wait, that doesn’t really make sense. But I’m enjoying it so it’s here. Plus Beyoncé’s Lemonade isn’t on Spotify yet.

Survive It
I can’t believe I’m only now hearing this artist and this song. It’s too perfect for me. Spring reminds us how the world dies a little in the winter but shows us its survival instinct is in tact and blooms fully in summer. Maybe we don’t have to conquer our foes and meet someone else’s expectations, or aspire to climb K2. Maybe we only need to live our life and survive it.

Masterpiece
Is there a greater masterpiece than summer? Okay that’s a stretch - I heard this on NPR’s All Songs Considered recently and wanted to share.

5 Years Time
Where will we be in 5 years time? I have no idea but this song reminds me of one of those kind of “Walking on Sunshine” kind of spring days you have and always look back on with much better memories than it really was. For some reason all Pollyanna memories are set in spring or summer. Hey, don’t throw me shade, I don’t make the rules.

Buttercup
A Canadian band singing about buttercups (or something?) - that is summer, right?

Shine
By now everyone knows Leon Bridges’ story. Hey guys, did you hear? This super talented guy was NOT famous, then he started singing and someone recorded him and now everyone is listening to him so now he IS famous. Wow. Just like a flower blooming in the sun.

Empire Builder
So Laura Gibson sings with one of those fragile little girl voices as clear as water on a crystal edge. I understand this kind of voice annoys the f**k out of some people. But this isn’t their playlist. It’s mine and this song feels like it should be part of a David Lynch Twin Peaks redux, perhaps renamed Twee Peeks because that would be so cute… but slightly melancholic.

Running With the Wolves
Every summer young and old alike feel like cleaning out their closets, casting off their heavy winter clothing to disappear into the hills and run with the wolves. Well, not “literally” because there’s a good chance you’d be dead by morning. But definitely figuratively, by being a total badass and howling all the while and I don’t know, trying a new hair colour or by wearing brightly coloured socks or no socks at all. Take that socks!

Modern Girl
When Sleater-Kinney released that surprise album last year I was on it like a goth girl on a smelly boyfriend sweater (is that still a thing?) This obviously led me to listening to some more Sleater-Kinney tunes and this one with its refrain about her life being like a picture of a sunny day seemed perfect. This song reminds me of those times when you stub your toe and just grin the shit out of it and say, “I’m fine. Totally good."

Ice Cream Sandwich
My favourite kind of sandwich. You need proof? Check out my infinitely expanding waistline fuelled by cans of beer and sandwiches of ice and cream.

Blackbird
There is absolutely no reason to explain the presence of this song in any playlist. It is here because it is this song. Explain yourself to it. Plus, it's been an ongoing summer of #blacklivesmatter which is of course reminds of summers so many years ago of civil disobedience. C'mon people, it's 2016 already. Why are still having these problems?

Sweet Thing
Well, obviously this song refers to the previous one musically if not lyrically so there’s no reason to keep typing.

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