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Amber lights at 3AM on a humid July night. Hamburger buns, potato salad, and mustard. A nice beer at sundown. It ain’t summer without these golden moments which drip flavor and stand, timeless, in our memories. We keep a playlist of classics which can only be described as “solid gold.” For Sounding Out!’s fourth blog-o-versary, here is a mix of songs which will forever sound summer.
Solid Gold Summer (Just the Hits):
“Metal Guru” – T Rex (Aaron Trammell)
“Sail to the Sun” – Wavves (Jennifer Stoever-Ackerman)
“212” – Azaelia Banks (Justin Burton)
“Unfair” – Pavement (Airek Beauchamp)
“John, I’m Only Dancing (again)” – David Bowie (Brooke Carlson)
“I.C.E. (El Hielo)”- La Santa Cecilia (Santa Perversa)
“Computer Love” – Zapp & Roger (Tara Betts)
“In the Park” – Ghostface Killah feat. Black Thought (Carter Mathes)
“Go Wild in the Country” – Bow Wow Wow (Seth Mulliken)
“Kill Surf City” – The Jesus and Mary Chain (D. Travers Scott)
“Pretty Girl Rock” – Keri Hilson (R.N. Bradley)
“Another Love” – Alice Smith (Roshanak Kheshti)
“‘Foreign Bodies’ Astoria-Megler Bridge” – Radiation City (Osvaldo Oyola)
“Summer Can’t Come Too Soon” – A.J. Croce (Bill Kirkpatrick)
“I Love It” – Icona Pop (Liana Silva-Ford)
Listen. I’m hearing Shakespeare. Taking four of Shakespeare’s tragedies (Macbeth, Othello, Hamlet, King Lear), I hear Shakespeare in and around another anachronistic soundscape – the blues. The space of this sonic experience will be YOGIGA Expression Gallery, a performance space in Hongdae, a popular art and club scene in Seoul, Korea, on January 26, 2013, in their 불가사리 : 실험/즉흥 발표회, or Starfish: Experimental/Improvisational Performances. The performers will include: Carys Matic on percussion, 황서영 (Hwang Seo Young), reading, and myself on the alto sax. Melding the blues and Shakespeare, this project involves my writing short, page-length poems in contemporary English that contain a line from a Shakespeare play, as well as the play’s main ideas. Part of my task is bedding the Shakespeare passage in an English that is lyrical, but untimely, in part so as to re-produce the strangeness of the Bard. These lines are then laid across a bit of percussion built out of the playing of Shakespeare’s books – literally. The rhythmic foundation is thus established upon a thing that didn’t exist properly in Shakespeare’s time, yet is so central to Shakespeare today. And finally, I use an alto saxophone and blues scales to improvize a bit of blues along with the percussion and the reading. In short, I’m queering Shakespeare by placing him in a blues bed, punctuated by the pounding of books, and dressed up in a Korean, female voice.
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Brooke A. Carlson is an Assistant Professor of English Literature at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul, Korea. His areas of concentration include Early Modern Drama, English Renaissance, World Literature, Composition, Gender/Race, and Sound. He writes on early modern notions of subjectivity, class, and capitalism, and has published most recently on Jonson and Milton.
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