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1
West Side Story: Act I: Prologue
Leonard Bernstein, West Side Story Orchestra, Johnny Green
06:36
2
Spanish Harlem
Ben E. King
02:54
3
Hey Ladies
Beastie Boys
03:47
4
Rockaway Beach - 2017 Remaster
Ramones
02:06
5
In The Sun - 2001 Digital Remaster
Blondie
02:39
6
Last Nite
The Strokes
03:13
7
The Rat
The Walkmen
04:22
8
Maps
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
03:39
9
This Year's Girl
Elvis Costello & The Attractions
03:20
10
Statue Of Liberty - 2001 Remaster
XTC
02:55
11
Uptown Girl
Billy Joel
03:17
12
Hot Child In The City - (Pre-Order Exclusive)
Nick Gilder
03:34
13
Summer in the City
Comateens
02:44
14
Bond Street
Burt Bacharach
02:04
15
Street Fighting Man - 50th Anniversary Edition
The Rolling Stones
03:15
16
Dark Streets of London
The Pogues
03:17
17
Maid Of Bond Street
David Bowie
01:45
18
Sheila
Jamie T
04:19
19
LDN
Lily Allen
03:10
20
Summertime
The Sundays
03:34
21
West End Girls
Pet Shop Boys
04:01
22
Unfinished Sympathy
Massive Attack
05:12
23
Missing - Todd Terry Remix / Radio Edit
Everything But The Girl, Todd Terry
03:56
24
Primrose Hill
John Martyn, Beverley Martyn
02:55
25
Itchycoo Park - 2012 Remaster
Small Faces
02:44
26
Waterloo Sunset
The Kinks
03:19

Strutting Down the Street in Summer

A collection of songs which celebrate summer in perhaps the two most cinematic cities in the world, New York and London.

There is an undeniable magic to summer in the city. The streets are empty (more than ever this summer), they are often a little dirtier than usual, with the smell of dust in the parks…The magic lies both in the stillness of a sweaty afternoon and in the promise of a night out, when the few remaining bars left open gather the city dwellers in an often sexually charged atmosphere, the heat and boredom of the day fueling late night adventures. As a girl – a little bit less now as a woman, but still – walking down the streets in the summer felt exciting and a little dangerous, but mostly just made me feel overwhelmingly free.
 
This collection of songs celebrates summer and girls in perhaps the two most cinematic cities in the world, New York and London. I chose to open with West Side Story’s prologue, which mirrors the tension and heat that is about to drive a bunch of New York teenagers into madness. Some songs will take you to a smelly and sweaty summer at the CBGBs, where Blondie was in residence for two months in the summer of 1975. Many years later, a few New York bands would create their own summer of music and enjoy getting wasted whilst playing or attending gigs. So yes, technically these are not a girl’s summer songs, but in the book Meet Me in the Bathroom, Karen O’s recollection of memories from those golden days justifying their place here, and also because I have a very fond memory of an extraordinary rendition of “Maps” at the end of the afternoon (‘apero time’ for us French), at the French festival Rock en Seine at the end of August…
 
The Comateens’ cover of the “Lovin’ Spoonful” sounds very much like Denim, and therefore seemed like a perfect transatlantic transition to London, which is not all dull and grey in an ‘Eight Mile High’ kind of way. When one imagines Swinging London, no one does so with Bowie’s “Maid of Bond Street” in the pouring rain. Even the Pogues celebrated a drunk night out in London in the summer breeze. There is also the sense of excitement that goes with meeting your friends at the pub, pre or post festival. However, one rarely gets mad and political there, as the Rolling Stones regret in “Street Fighting Man”, partly inspired by the events of May ‘68 in Paris. Summertime in London means sipping beers or wine in the park before heading to a pub, enjoying a stroll in the streets, or walking alone and heartbroken, like Tracey Horn from Everything But the Girl’s video for “Missing”. And this leads me to the only exception in this New York vs London collection: Massive Attack’s “Unfinished Sympathy”, which has nothing to do with London and famously features Los Angeles in the video. To me it is just the perfect embodiment of urban summer melancholy. I’ve made up for it by finishing this playlist with three of the most beautiful London summer songs ever written, which will take you to a carefree world of young love and hazy sunsets over the city.

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