June 10, 2004

3tunes: Summer songs

I wanted to do a CD review. But (a) the Amazon link-up for CDs isn't ready yet, and (b) who buys (or listens to) a whole CD any more? I've got maybe 1,000 or so songs in iTunes and on my iPod, but not a single album in its entirity. Plus reviewing 10 or so songs all at once seems like hard work. So instead I thought I'd devise a theme and then pick out 3 songs from iTunes that fit the theme and write about those. Easier, quicker, more fun.

So, first theme: Summer songs:-

  • Kate Bush, Eat the Music Kate goes calypso, and manages to make the idea of five fruit portions a day seem strangely appealing.

  • Hothouse Flowers, Don't Go If you could distil happiness and convert it to music this is what you'd get. The words just tumble out – fresh-cut grass, soft sandy beaches, sun sparkling on the undersides of the bridges, and more. It's like a thesaurus of summer.

  • ELO, Mr Blue Sky This song is around a bit at the moment. It's in a US advert for the Beetle, and on the soundtrack to Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Terminally unfashionable, and frankly, a man who rhymes with the aid of a dictionary, and not a big one. But they don't come much more strings-choir-guitars-piano-48tracks-all-used full-on pop song than this. How come Abba became retro-cool, but ELO didn't? Time for rehabilitation?

iTunes users in e-lab can find any of these tunes in my shared music collection if you want to give them a spin. Sadly iTunes sharing only works across small sub-sections of Warwick's network, not the whole campus, which is a pity – if it did, there'd be more music than anyone could possibly need just waiting to be explored. Ah well.

- 15 comments by 7 or more people Not publicly viewable

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  1. Steve Carpenter

    My summer picks…

    Groove Armada – At The River
    Air/Beth Hirsch – All I Need and You Make It Easy
    Good Vibrations – Beach Boys

    11 Jun 2004, 08:38

  2. John Dale

    Have you got those in iTunes so I can give them a listen? (Except the Beach Boys, obviously; got that already :-)

    11 Jun 2004, 09:10

  3. the groove armada track definately works for me and i'm not a great fan of that kind of music

    11 Jun 2004, 09:19

  4. Robert O'Toole

    The B-Side to Eat The Music, You Want Alchemy, really is summer for me. It's about wandering around in the Downs on a hot day and bumping into an eccentric bee-keeper who obviously sees that there's something more metaphysical about bees and honey.

    11 Jun 2004, 09:54

    1. Summer in the city – Three Dog Night
    2. Summertime – Will Smith
    3. You get what you give – New Radicals

    All great summer tracks!

    11 Jun 2004, 10:27

  5. Robert O'Toole

    Kieran, surely you mean:

    2. Summertime – Billie Holliday

    11 Jun 2004, 10:51

  6. Robert O'Toole

    This entry is blatantly an attempt to capture the Most Popular Blog position. And i just helped it on its way with another comment!

    11 Jun 2004, 11:08

  7. Steven Carpenter

    Not that Rob doesn't know every trick in the book – trackbacking other people's items so he attracts the topic comments for instance! And to answer your question John – the tunes are indeed on my iTunes list.

    11 Jun 2004, 11:11

  8. John Dale

    > the tunes are indeed on my iTunes list

    Cool. Perhaps I should have said "If you comment with your own suggestions, they should be available in iTunes". But then that would restrict the discussion to people in e-lab, which seems a bit harsh.

    What I really wanted to do was include hyperlinks from my blog entry to the actual songs in my iTunes collection; I believe that this may in principle be possible via the daap:// protocol, but I haven't yet found a way to do it.

    11 Jun 2004, 11:31

  9. Chris May

    Orb: Little Fluffy Clouds – you really need one of the super-long-interminable-remixes to get the most out of this

    Snoop Dogg: Gin and Juice. Relaxed g-funk rapping from way back . Somewhere in my itunes collection is a cover version by phish in hillbilly style, which (if you've heard the original) is absolutely hysterical.

    Chilli Peppers: Can't Stop – Summer evenings are the perfect time for exercise, and this is the perfect track to fire you up for it (That's probably another track list in it's own right, but I'm not enough of a comments-tart to trackback and start the discussion)

    11 Jun 2004, 13:53

  10. Steve Rumsby

    John – is there no way of making your iTunes collection leak out? What's the technical reason for it being restricted to within e-lab? Not that we want to burden the backbone with iTunes traffic, you understand…

    11 Jun 2004, 15:23

  11. John Dale

    > What‘s the technical reason for it
    > being restricted to within e-lab?

    I know nothing at all about networking. A brief discussion with Chris Tilbury suggests that it's because there is a router somewhere between my PC and your PC, and iTunes traffic won't cross a router. It's not that we don't want to share music, it's just that the network is set up in a way which constrains the sharing down to relatively local groups.

    11 Jun 2004, 15:39

  12. Robert O'Toole

    There was a way of streaming iTunes beyond subnets and across the web, although i tried it and couldn't get it to work. However in version 4 onwards Apple blocked it: link

    11 Jun 2004, 19:57

  13. Paul Strapps

    For me there's only one real summer tune and that's Summertime by Will Smith (or DJ Jazz Jeff & the Fresh Prince).

    Rob, Billie….who!

    14 Jun 2004, 11:54

  14. Koo Koo Kajou

    Its DJ Jazzy Jeff. not Jazz. west Philly Represent. and the ultimate summer band for this music day and age is for sure Third Eye Blind. Any song fits with the beach. but heres the best:

    Semi-Charmed Life
    Wake For Young Souls
    1000 Julys
    Deep Inside of You
    Never Let you Go
    Burning Man

    oh and the Counting Crows are good. and one track by those little shits from Hanson is undeniably good no matter how much you hate them: Strong enough to Break.

    10 Apr 2005, 07:41

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