Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Discovering The (oh so obscure) Song of the Summer

All the best summers of our lives are locked and forever ready to reload in our memories by their very particular soundtrack. 




A big Christmas song will just remind you of burping turkey dinners and smiling faintly at 'whacky' gifts, a big summer anthem brings you right back to the very specifics of that one long summer you spent awkwardly snogging and grimacing through ciders in the park, or later discovering complete freedom and foreign medical services on your first big holiday with friends, or later again, sweating on your daily commute and going to a garden centre on your one bank holiday off (ah the wonders of adult life). No decent summer passes without that one track.  


Summer 2016 was conquered by Drake's 'One Dance', but while away in France myself and some friends uncovered an alternative -  Kungs vs Cookin' on 3 Burners 'This Girl'




It was our anthem and absolutely ours alone. The oh so sweet smugness of finding that obscure track you can casually gloat over back home 'Oh you haven't heard of it? I guess it's just a continental thing... you see I was travelling... and I am better than you.' 


We returned to the UK to discover that it was number 2 in the charts. And had been for the entire summer. Goddamit. 


I'm spending this summer in Ibiza and yet again had my little tastemaker ears primed.  We discovered a banger that is playing in every bar, cafe, and eardrum across the island. It's a little Spanish number called 'Despacito'. 





Which, it transpires, has been number 1 in the US and the UK for the past month. In fact it is topping charts in 57 countries. It has 1.8 billion views on YouTube. I fear I may not be the only one to stumble on this particular exotic gem. 





What links these two summer bangers? The majority of us trying to sing along have absolutely no idea what we're saying. 'This Girl' because it's muffled gibberish and Despacito because for us folk who aren't fluent in Spanish any attempt to join in involves trying to style it out with makey-up words like 'ta-ta-la-uriotto baba zinko rinko freeto!' 


Even Justin Bieber, who features on the track isn't quite sure what's going on, during a NY gig tried to get away with substituting with cries of 'Burrito!' and 'Doritos!' Good effort. 


The chorus actually means 'Slowly....I want to smell your neck slowly/Let me whisper things in your ear/So that you'll remember if you're not with me/SlowlyI want to undress you with my kisses, slowly/I sign the walls of your labyrinth/And make your whole body a manuscript."


Oh my. I need a lie down and a Cornetto after that. Sign the walls of your labryrinth? Personally I relate more to the burrito version. 





It is the first US number 1 in Spanish language in 21 years. So what was the previous one? Well it's a certain obscure little backwater of a track I personally uncovered. Check it out HERE 


What's your song of the summer? I'm on Twitter @theroryjohn

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