Thursday, August 02, 2007

A Song for Every Occasion

This morning I could hear our neighbour playing Underworld’s ‘Born Slippy’ and shouting “Lager, Lager, Lager”. It was 8.30am. Too early for Underworld in my opinion although it was a vast improvement on their usual choice of music – soulless R&B or what sounded like the euro-pop nightmare that is ‘Dr Jones’ by Aqua.

From the occasional times I’ve been able to hear their music, the neighbours, like many young people, seem to suffer from the modern musical malady of only listening to the sort of music played in clubs, regardless of the time of day or occasion. This niggles me – perhaps I have an unusually wide-taste in music, but really I do think there is a time and place for certain types of music, and there is really no need to be listening to the same tunes you were bumping n grinding to in Harrow’s finest meat market the morning after the night before.

Back in my youth when my suitors were the type to spend evenings at raves (how strange this sounds now!), they at least used to listen to something else when they got home. The nosebleed techno was reserved for the night out, replaced at home by the Orb, Pink Floyd, Stone Roses etc. So it can be done – there is a song for every occasion.

The Morning After the Night Before – you really need to bring it down a notch, but it doesn’t have to be one of those awful chill-out compilations or something featuring panpipes.
Recommendations: Most of ‘Screamadelica’ (skip Loaded and Movin’ on Up though at this point), Chemical Brothers songs featuring Beth Orton especially Alive Alone. ‘Some Velvet Morning’ by Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra, ‘Sugar Man’ either the original Sixto Rodriguez version or the Free Association cover.

Weddings – Whilst you don’t want to just let the DJ play any old rubbish, you should consider your guests and the mix of generations there is likely to be – so don’t just play the latest indie rock noise. I know from experience that Weekender by Flowered Up is not a suitable song for a wedding, even if the grandparents don’t realise what it is about, there are swearwords in there.
Recommendations: Anything on the Motown or Stax labels is good. Mothers-of-the brides love a bit of Marvin Gaye. Any 1960s stuff really – the Monkees especially. You’re on pretty safe ground with The Beatles, although I’d avoid Tomorrow Never Knows (too experimental) & Helter Skelter (the song that inspired the Manson Murders is probably not the mood you want)

Hairdressing Salons – my former hairdressers always had MTV on or worse MTV Bass. Awful. I don’t want to listen to this sort of music while I’m having my haircut. Having your haircut is just about as far away from clubbing as you can get, so why the banging music?Recommendations: Actually I’ve come a bit unstuck with this one as I can't really think what is the best music for having a trim to, without resorting to weak puns like songs by the Cutting Crew or Haircut 100. Perhaps silence is the best thing or maybe something classical? Any suggestions?


Miss Forthright said...

May I suggest something calming for a hairdressers, like Air or something? They might be more chilled while cutting your hair then and do it better. I agree with your wedding music, I'd like to chuck a bit of Sinatra and Nat King Cole/ Dean Martin in there too to get the oldies going.

SandDancer said...

Air is a good choice - calming and how they pronounce hair in East London! It definitely needs to be something that isn't frantic which encourages them to chop away too much.

Sinatra is always good at weddings too - one of the recent weddings we attended played a lot of his songs.

Miss Forthright said...

Talking of frantic chopping, I am having to have all my hair lopped off short short. Twits. Shame they weren't playing Air in there.

SandDancer said...

That is the good thing about having long, unstyled hair is that is makes it so much harder for them to mess up.

Roses said...

I'm with you on your choice of music. Having recently been to Alix's wedding where there was live Motown, I can heartily recommend it.

I'm also a huge fan of cheese. If ever there's an occasion for serious cheese, there's a wedding and if the DJ is clever they can chose some from all the decades. Which should get everyone up on the dance floor. Who could resist Night in White Satin?

Is this the part where you strike my name off your friends list?

SandDancer said...

Roses - you are treading on thin ice now after the Queen comments before. Three strikes and you are out!

Actually I think a bit of cheese at a wedding is fine but not the whole time - I think it needs to be mixed with something decent. But then what counts as cheese? I wouldn't consider Night in White Satin to be cheese - I quite like that!

Roses said...

I consider myself warned and I will try and behave myself in the future.

I suppose there are tracks that I'd shoot the DJ for playing - Especially for You - Kylie and Jason. I wouldn't want it played even for irony's sake.