Natty dread she want...

Summer of Lovers 2019

Don’t fight it. Melt into something languid. Be a piece of flotsam and follow your friends downstream. Humid open-windowed nights, sirens, spirits, social clubs and baking libraries. Rain. Get wrung out. Lose the plot. Loop. Scoop. Dive. Sway.

Voices by Tornado Wallace
Blissfully serene tropic escapism, heavy, humid and hypnotic. It’s like Peter Gabriel and Roxy Music castaway on a jungle island taking opioids.
— Luke G

raingurl by Yaeji
Last summer I joined the gym and I always wished it would rain for my walk home, as it was just too hot! Also a great work out song 👌🏻
— Lauren

Girlfriend by Ty Segal
Makes me picture a bouncy castle lurching its way chaotically through the streets of some dusty American town, hurling tearaways backwards and forwards between its swollen walls. Gotta love a bit of garage / psych in your ears on a deadline.
— Alex

Love and Death by Ebo Taylor
I simply love this song!
— Ellie

Electric Counterpoint III. Fast. by Steve Reich
Reminds me of that feeling of excitement on the first light evening, thinking about everything Summer will bring!
— Jo

Tom’s Diner by Suzanne Vega, DNA
This has been stuck in my head all week.
— Dan C

Wooly Bully by Bad Manners
When I was a teenager I had a long distance relationship with someone who lived in Dorset. Bad manners for me sums up that place, and carefree summers by the sea.
— Dan P

Hala by Rezzett
Came on shuffle the other morning when the sun was coming out and felt vaguely summery.
— George

I’m Not In Love by Kelsey Lu
A crescendo of heat, soundwaves and heartbeats that break over you like heady summer nights. Plus it’s good to wail to.
— Clementine

(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher & Higher by Jackie Wilson
I always get goose bumps when I am listening to this tune, it’s just so full of positive energy and love. It’s an instant mood changer and gives me flashbacks to all the greatest memories. It doesn’t matter if you are walking through busy London streets or standing on the Old Man of Storr, surrounded by beautiful nature, this song will lift you up, while a warm summerbreeze blows through your hair and the only thing you want to do is to dance.
— Bilgin

Fantasy by Mariah Carey
Sweet urban pop album ‘Daydream’ was a favourite of mine back in 1996 and this song reminds me of those endless school holidays when there was nothing better to do than choreograph and invent new lyrics to Mariah and Spice Girl songs. My friends and I named our group “The Garlic Girls”.
— Hattie

Duck by Bill Wells & Maher Shalal Hash Baz
Close notebook, sleep computer, pack tote. Head to best local suntrap, order crisp beer, enjoy drinks with pals.
It is a Scottish jazzer and an amateur Japanese ensemble who’ve collaborated to make DUCK — the soundtrack to this part of the summery working week.
— Arthur & Georgia (Polytechnic)

Something In The Water by Harvey Sutherland
Nothing better for a balmy evening than Harvey Sutherland’s diverse funk, soul, jazz and disco inspired output, but this new track from March is a 100% certified summer banger.
— Ben

Natty Dread She Want by Big Youth
Summer means road trips, seaside and swimming. Now with an 8 month old getting her to sleep in the car means we can make good head way on our journey. Luckily for us she sleeps to reggae. I found this old “Big Youth” CD in the car and by the time this song comes on she is normally asleep, the city behind us, I begin to dream as we head towards the sea.
— Geoff

Swimming Song by Kate & Anna McGarrigle
I discovered this song last summer whilst driving through Northern Ontario to attend a friend’s wedding. He married a canoeing instructor on a beautiful lake and we swam constantly. This song sums up that love of swimming, and reminds me to get out there and into the water!
— Luke MM

Midas by Maribou State & Holly Walker
Cannot listen to this song without having a huge grin on my face :) such summery feelings.
— Immy

Night Blooming Jasmine by Eli & Fur
Completely captures those perfect summer nights in the city that you never, ever want to end!
— Kerensa

Push The Button by Sugababes
Actually I want to change mine.
— Lisa

Wow F**k by ARTHUR
I absolutely love this song, this album and ARTHUR. The lyrics speak strongly to my almost spiteful introversion during my summer holidays as a kid. They also speak broadly to themes of growth, independence and self-satisfaction/deprecation. ARTHUR’s beautifully disarming and unsettling cadence, the unconfident but steady drums and playful bass riffs make this thing sound like a theme song as much as it does a jam session. Above all else, I adore the abrupt and rushed ending.
— Kia

Rapid Fire by Santi
Reminds me of a few fun days in Lagos earlier this year!
— Pam

Dreamer by Livin’ Joy
Club music today has veered towards the heavy side, a little too techno for my taste, but when I hear a good house tune with some drum pads, synths and piano stabs my ears light up. Dreamer has all those elements and conjures up friends, festivals, road trips and summer.
— Alex S

Buttercream by TTY
Hot summer nights in Brooklyn sound better with this song, especially on the way home when the new day is creeping up behind you.
— Olivia

Anemone by The Brian Jonestown Massacre
This song is actually the first track on a playlist I have called Desert Art Life. I stumbled upon it while I was taking up residence in Joshua Tree a couple of years ago. I had a daily routine of waking up, working on my art practice, drinking black filter coffee, and smoking the odd American Spirit, while I read my David Hockney autobiography under the blazing sun. The Spotify algorithm followed this with Sun Ra, Holy Wave, and Alice Coltrane, which formed the playlist I now listen to whenever it gets hot.
— Joss

Hold by Vera Blue
It’s actually quite a deep dark song but has some really great uplifting moments in it..
— Grant

Dark/Light 1 by Meredith Monk
I caught the song on WFMU a few months back. It was around 20:00. I was driving through Brooklyn. It was one of those perfect May evenings when you really feel the summer afoot and the skyline gets periwinkle candy gradient. It was glorious.
— Kira

Melancholia II by William Basinski
I’ve dedicated a lot of my summer to work with my dancers and this particular song has been on repeat and it sets the tone to all my work for this summer.
— Paul P

Ruler of My Heart by Irma Thomas
Dad and I used to drive to this house in Oxford he was working on. He had a compilation album with this track on, we would blast it whilst driving in his gold Saab turbo (one of my favourite cars). I was only probably 10 years old or so I didn’t realise the lyrics were sad at the time, but it always stayed with me and to this day is still one of my favourites.
— Nick

Unknown Legend by Neil Young
The moment the first three notes are plucked at the start of this song, a landscape is painted in my mind. It’s sunset on an American highway. A car travels along an endless road surrounded by rocky mountains. The low light tints everything with an orange hue and long shadows are thrown across the uneven terrain. There are two people are in the car. The passenger is asleep, feet resting upon the dashboard, whilst the driver enjoys the wind in their hair and the open expanse ahead. The radio springs into life, angelic backing vocals soar, and this is the sound…

— Rob

Nomalizo by Letta Mbulu
Dance, dance, dance until the sunrise!
— Marta

Hungry Child by Hot Chip
We’ve had this on repeat in the Official Business studio. With everything going on in the world right now some unabashed escapism is needed and the new Hot Chip album is brilliant and cheesy as f**k.
— Mike

Cellophane Car by The Stroppies
Jangly pop from Oz (via London). Feel like I am road tripping on a balmy summer evening.
— Owen

Chocolate by Tindersticks
Scorching summers, memories of hot bodies, hot brains with overheated neurons, and the misattribution of physiological arousal…
— Rhett

U.F.O. by Jim Sullivan
I only learnt of the late(?) great Jim Sullivan a year back and have had this track in one of my favourite playlists since. He disappeared in remote New Mexico in 1975 after recording fun, sunny and possibly sinister tracks like U.F.O. about his possible abductors.
— Patrick

Everybody Loves The Sunshine by Roy Ayers Ubiquity
‘Everybody Loves the Sunshine’ is one of my summer faves, which I dust off every year. This song was on repeat at the set design studio where I did my first summer internship. It forever reminds me of that experience; painting, building and lots of heavy lifting.
— Hannah

One Two Three Baby by Asha Bhosle and Mahendra Kapoor
As summer soundtracks go, this seven minute slice of ‘60s Bollywood rock’n’roll craziness from the all-time Bollywood queen Asha Bhosle, is hard to beat. Imagine hearing it booming out of a packed cinema in the summer heat in downtown Delhi. One two three baby yaah yaah yah!
— Alex C

Bombay by El Guincho
Nice!
— Sheyi

Sports Men by Haruomi Hosono
I think this is such a happy summery tune. Makes me think of a lazy hot afternoon, when you are gazing at people in the park, performing some elaborate sports rituals in a circle. As the weather gets hotter, their moves start getting more weird and deformed, and eventually everything is melting of course! Ah I would love to make an animation of it!
— Olga

Que Le Han Hecho A Mi Canción, Mamá? by Jeanette
I listen to this when I am being a little baby and am annoyed at the client :’)
— Ollie

It Wasn‘t Us by Ludacris ft. I-20
I’m sitting in the British Library pondering the human condition, pull up Spotify and start my search. This doesn’t feel right. Nor this. Surely I couldn’t choose that? Maybe I’m overthinking it. I take a sip of water from my canteen but the lid isn’t screwed on and I pour half its contents down my front. I pull my headphones out of my laptop to shake the water off the keyboard. Without warning, the room fills with the inimitable sound of early naughties hip hop. The lyrics: "You can call up the back-up hoes, even call up the back-up pros and tell 'em to suck a dick” swell across the hall. There are sniggers. There are looks of disapproval. But with an unexpected sense of relief, I realise, that I’ve found the one. It Wasn’t Us by Ludacris and I-20 is the song I submit..
— Rida

When There Is No Sun by Sun Ra
I have a whole 4-hour birthing playlist I made and listened to all summer last year while preparing for childbirth. This is the song that was playing, accompanied by my most primal roars, when the baby came at 1.58pm on Monday 16th July 2018. Sun Ra’s ’When There Is No Sun’.
— Roshni

Whippin Picadilly by Gomez
No School. Jumpers for goalposts and bezzin’ around on bikes. It was the tail end of Brit-pop. We were too young to be going out in Manchester but this song gave us a taste of the swagger.
— Paul K

Sigarette by Le Feste Antonacci
It’s got that heavy weather feeling, a nonchalant energy to it, perfect for smoking by the pool in Stromboli...
— Côme

Waterfall by Atlantic Ocean
It reminds me of hanging out listening to music in mates’ first cars. We’d just drive around going nowhere but it felt free.
— Kieran

Having An Average Weekend by Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet
The Shadowy Men were a Toronto surf rock band mostly active in the 80’s, and this absolute jam was the theme tune for the very odd Toronto sketch comedy TV show 'Kids in the Hall'. I spent a lot of nights in my parents basement trying to escape the humid Ontario summers watching that show, and it always reminds me of what a joy it is to get to be an irreverent, sarcastic, uncaring teenager in the summertime.
— Spencer

The Best by Tina Turner
I heard this again a few months ago in an airport somewhere on my way back to London from Sydney. The saxophone solo has been stuck in my head on [really, really] high rotation ever since. Sometimes it makes me feel really anxious—like its might be the only piece of music my brain will ever playback to me. Jesus. Such high rotation. The horse cantering dance moves in the music video are so, so strange. She’s amazing tho. I think I love this song. Maybe. I hope I can stop remembering it soon.
— Stuart

You and I by Papooz
It’s a sun soaked, love drenched summer tune that will forever remind me of driving to upstate New York for the weekend slowly losing phone signal. I’ve played it on repeat all summer.
— Toby

Radio by Ty Segal
Not only this song, but the whole record. Just because... well.. came out this summer. Masterpiece!! Ty does it again!!
— Bráulio

Chlorine by Penelope
A song about Chlorine by an indie-rock band that features the line “You make me smell a certain way”; what could be more appropriate for summer. I challenge you to listen to the guitar solo at the end and not be immediately whisked back to your youth, driving around rural Essex at sunset blasting music from your 1999 Ford Focus.
— Tommy

Strawberry Moon by Domi Chansorn
The braver the music that I hear, the more courageous my work becomes. This song is the perfect soundtrack for a psychedelic summer night.
— Martin

Its All Right / For Sentimental Reasons (Live Medley) by Sam Cooke
Sam Cooke’s Live at the Harlem Social Club always makes me think of hot and humid NYC nights. This track is particularly evocative. In a summer daze, it’s only fitting that two songs merge into one...
— Korey

Let Em In by Billy Paul
I always loved the Wings original written by Macca but this cover transforms it into to a joyful rallying cry that demands to be broadcast on speakers in the street. Dancing should then commence.
— Sarah

Nowhere Near by Yo La Tengo
Summer is time for dreaming, relaxing and taking things slow in our lives. It’s time for people we like and love. Everyone is here, but you’re nowhere near. This song is for you A.
— Kristína

Homesickness by Emahoy Tsegué-Maryam Guébrou
I heard this piece by chance at the start of the summer, and now I’m obsessed. It makes me think of running water — cool relief on hot bright days.
— Xenobe

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