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Saturday, August 11, 2007

Number One Summer Jam

The annual making of the All (something) Summer Fun Mix was interrupted, somewhat, by my entire life changing early on in the summer. The mix I'd been making has only recently resurfaced, and it has some of the uncertainty and darkness of spring in it.
It has some changes to be made, but what we have so far is:

"Never Been to Spain"-Three Dog Night. This song is such a wonderful meditation on not-a-goddamn thing.

"I Was A Lover"-T.V. On The Radio. Urgent and dire. A summer song?

"I Really Should've Gone Out Last Night"-Dirty 3. This song may very well come out. It's beautiful, but a little too sad.
However, this being one of the strangest fucking summers I've had in years, is that so bad?

"Run Of The Mill"-George Harrison. I love the horn section.

"Chinese Translation"-M. Ward ("See, I once was a young fool like you/afraid to do the things that I knew I had to do...")

"Parasol"-The Sea and Cake. A sad song about vacations, loss, and the end of things. Hm.

"On A Neck, On A Spit"-Grizzly Bear. What can I say? They kill me softly. They strum my life with their fingers, or something. This too, might not really be a summer song, though.

"To Beat the Devil"-Kris Kristofferson. ("If you waste your time a-talkin' to the people who don't listen to the things that you are sayin', who do you think's gonna hear? And if you should die explainin' how the things that they complain about are things they could be changin', who do you think's gonna care?": The Devil's song. And he steals it, at the end.)

"We All Make the Little Flowers Grow"-Lee Hazelwood. A lovely song. About death. Hm.

"Province"-T.V. On The Radio. Yes. A nice pep-talk, and then some. ("That love is the province...Of the brave...")

"Odds and Ends"-Bob Dylan and The Band. It makes a nice Side A closer.

"Terrible Angels"-Coco Rosie. A weary observational. Nice and casual. Just 'cause it's sunny out doesn't immediately mean you lose all your reasoning capabilities, right? Right?

"When I Go Deaf"-Low. This has been my favorite song for several months now. The artist considers how nice it will be, one day, to not give a shit about art any more. But not yet: the quiet, strummed guitar gives way to one of the loudest solos I've ever heard in my life, perhaps causing some hearing loss.

"Let the Devil In"-T.V. On The Radio. It's about how fucking stupid people are for doing heroin, but it's also a kickass song, bound to get all the kids singing along.

"You Shook Me"-Led Zeppelin. Perhaps the most hallucinatory, fucked up song of all. Completely over the top, crazy virtuosity for its own sake, eminently satisfying.

"Miss Judy's Farm"-The Faces. I have a new-found respect for this band, and young Rod Stewart because of it. This is a great song, too, mind you.

"Ways To Be Wicked"-Lone Justice. My favorite of the country-influenced L.A. punk bands of the early '80's, fronted by Maria McKee, who apparently only had one good album in her. I'm not sure this song belongs.

"All The Way to Memphis"-Mott The Hoople. Same thing as The Faces, except insert 'Ian Hunter' for 'Rod Stewart'.

"To Go Home"-M. Ward. ("Lord it's great to be alive/takes the skin right off my hide/to think I'll have to give it all up some day...") Why the hell is this song on a car commercial?

"Rest Cure"-Arthur Brown. He takes a break from being crazy on this one, sort of. It's a smooth, Four Tops-esque number, but is it a satire? He goes nuts on the chorus, too.

"Virgo Clowns"-Van Morrison. A little song about how maybe just maybe certain members of a certain astrological sign need to relax a little bit.

"Don't Bring Me Down"-The Animals. You know, it's just a very good ender, and I love The Animals, for the most part. It's not especially apropos, though.

Now, when The Onion's 'AV Club' was having a debate several weeks ago about what the Number One Summer Jam was, I had to say Amy Winehouse's "My Tears Dry On Their Own". It's weird how she went from being someone no one had heard of, to the voice we all gotta hear, to that sick freak that is still in heavy rotation, even though she is openly deplored by all who play her music. Sigh. She still has the finest voice out there at the moment, and this song goes on the mix, dammit.

The Believer's music issue came out, with its attendant CD. Grizzly Bear is on there, with an alternate version of "Easier". It goes on, perhaps right before that Kris song.

"One Lucky Night" by M. Ward. A song for/about gettin' laid? Check.

"Me We" by Lithops. This is a weird little electronic noise n' flute ditty from a Sonig records sampler. I like it a lot, and have no idea whether or not it fits with any of these other songs.

"Holiday" by The Kinks. Another one about vacations, albeit in this case, the delusion of one who has been admitted to The Nervous Hospital, and is kind of trying to view it in the best possible light. It goes on.

The mix's story arc will go along the lines of hesitant and doubtful, maybe a little dark but only a little bruised at first, to ever happier and happier (but never sappy, folks), probably still ending on "Don't Bring Me Down".

It occurs to me that it's August.

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1 Comments:

Blogger Junk Thief said...

Great mix. Can we swap iPods. "Never Been to Spain"! I haven't thought about that song in ages. Thanks for mentioning it, and it'll get me cracking for my Barcelona trip so I can shout out "Not!"

Lee Hazelwood...Mmmm. Now that was a voice. Even as a tiny tot, that voice got me quivering and knowing that there was something about men that just called out to me like a siren. "Some velvet morning when I'm straight." Indeed.

10:15 AM  

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