By James Sandham
Few things define the Canadian summer experience like a weekend at the cottage, and few things define a weekend at the cottage like the music you bring up there. I just happen to be heading to the cottage myself this weekend, and in that spirit, I’ve been busy crafting the perfect cottage playlist. It’s a difficult balance – you need music for the daytime, maybe some slower stuff for later in the evening as things wind down and of course you need tunes to listen to on the car ride up. I’ve still got a couple of days to get things finalized, but here’s what I’ve been working with so far.
Canned Heat – “Going Up the Country”
But of course. This is like the official theme song for leaving the city behind you and heading straight out for the wild green yonder of the North. It’s an integral song for the drive and totally sets the mood.
Bryan Adams – “Summer of ’69”
And who better to keep the spirits high on that long drive than the Canadian Music Hall of Fame’s 2006 inductee? This song’s one for the ages. Adams may have only been 10 years old when the summer of ’69 actually transpired, but that’s beside the point. The exuberance of this song speaks to people of all eras and is the perfect giddy indulgence to pass the time on the road.
Lighthouse – “Sunny Days”
And speaking of 1969, how could we not include Lighthouse, the iconic Toronto rockers whose self-titled debut came out that year? While this particular track wasn’t included on that album, its release nonetheless ushered in a career that would span decades.
Did you know that Howard Shore, one of the band’s original 13 members, went on to score films, and that he won Academy Awards for the music to the Lord of the Rings trilogy? This one, though, remains one of Lighthouse’s best.
Mungo Jerry – “In the Summertime”
This one is another summertime classic, perfect for that first day at the cottage when you’ve finally arrived, unpacked your stuff and the only thing left is to run down to the dock and jump in the drink. Easy living.
Otis Redding – (Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay
And speaking of docks, last but not least we have a little Otis Redding. This is basically a whole song dedicated to something I plan to be doing a lot of at the cottage: dock-sitting. I can almost hear the water lapping now. Hope you’re enjoying your summer!