Updated: Sep 5
On A Hot Summer Night
A soundtrack to Summer? Press play on the link below and enjoy those long hot days and foaming waves with 4 hours of music to sunbathe by, across 5 Zones.
With thanks to Paul Cullen, Victoria Walker, Caroline Walker, Chris Daw QC, Emma Dogliani and Howard Elsey for the Meat Loaf, U2, Desireless, Third World, Francesco Tosti and Ella Fitzgerald suggestions, respectively.
Friend and fellow-Catenian, Paul Cullen said: "Thanks for the Summer playlist. Here is one I thought of." With a link to Meat Loaf's You Took The Words Right Out of My Mouth and its opening spoken exchange:
On a hot summer night Would you offer your throat to the wolf with the red roses? Will he offer me his mouth? Yes Will he offer me his teeth? Yes Will he offer me his jaws? Yes Will he offer me his hunger? Yes Again, will he offer me his hunger? Yes And will he starve without me? Yes And does he love me? Yes Yes
On a hot summer night Would you offer your throat to the wolf with the red roses? Yes I bet you to say that to all the boys
So that went straight in at No. 1! The Hub's sister-outlaw Victoria Walker recalled a family trip to Brighton in warm, bright sunshine with a U2 track playing on a passing, top down car. Adding I Will Follow to the list. Mrs Hub herself associates holidays in the sun at a certain time with Desireless' French-language Voyage Voyage playing at local discos.
Regular Hub contributor, Howard Elsey, hit a note of dissension in response to the Meat Loaf pick. "Not sure about the first track for summer but then I don't profess any lyric knowledge." But followed up with a positive suggestion, saying, "More like it." with a link to Ella Fitzgerald's 1956 Too Darn Hot.
Opera: Love it or Hate it
Connected by a deep commitment to criminal justice reform, Hub interviewees, Chris Daw QC and Emma Dogliani, subject of Calming Prisoners Through Song, offer contrasting tastes in seasonal sounds.
Criminal barrister and subject of Hub blog Justice on Trial, Chris Daw QC grew up with his reggae-loving father playing classics from pre-Bob Marley and Jimmy Cliff into the 80s. Suitably attired, wearing a light blue T-shirt and "classic" Aviator shades on a hot summer's day, Chris explained his Summer Sounds offering:
I am sitting here in bright sunshine, I think it is 27 – 28 degrees. But is not quite as warm as the subject of one of my favourite songs, "96 Degrees in the Shade" by Third World. It just brings me out in utter joy!
Chris' own taste in music is eclectic apart, perhaps, from one category. "There is almost no category of music, except possibly opera, that irritates my ear."
London soprano Emma Dogliani might not be too thrilled to hear that! Emma has sung widely in classic opera productions in the UK and internationally, notably at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. She has now focused on following her criminal justice reformer grandparents by becoming a prison visitor and setting up a choir in a London prison.
Emma sang the aria Casta Diva from Bellini's opera Norma in an atrium at the centre of the prison arranged on a pentagonal five-wing system, accompanied on an electric piano brought down from the chapel. "I have sung in some amazing places but this was one of the most incredible experiences of my life!"
Married to Italian-born Sergio, Emma recently held concerts of English songs by Italian composer Francesco Tosti, combining her family and professional lives and adding Tosti's Summer to our list.
Emma might want a word with Chris about his opera blind spot!
Beauty Queen with a Voice of Gold
YouTube video: Lana Del Rey - White Dress (Official Music Video)
Readers may notice how often Summertime Sadness singer, Lana Del Rey, appears on The Hub's playlists. Hands up. The Hub is a sucker for a Beauty Queen with a flawed personality and a voice of gold! Del Ray stops you in the moment, making you listen that little bit deeper.
As on White Dress, from 2021 album Chemtrails Over The Country Club, about a simpler time before she was famous. There is something dreamy about her delivery, how she casually plays with her lower and higher voice registers to emphasise meaning. Like the virtuoso violin playing on Max Richter's brilliant re-working of Antonio Vivaldi's genius Four Seasons.
A good example of the breadth and quality awaiting you on the Summer Sounds playlist. Enjoy!
Listen to the Playlist
You can listen to The Hub's 5 zone Summer Sounds playlist by clicking on the link below.
Rock & Pop (Meat Loaf to Black Honey); Dance Floor (Madonna to Donna Summer); Chill Zone (Bob Marley to Miles Davis); Classical (Antonio Vivaldi recomposed by Max Richter to Gary Carpenter); Ballads (Ella Fitzgerald/Louis Armstrong to John Travolta/Olivia Newton-John).