I’m writing this on the Dieppe- Newhaven ferry on the way home from a weekend in Rouen. My musician partner’s cruise ship docked in Rouen for an overnight so I travelled down to meet him. Naturally it was a music fuelled weekend, from the typically Parisian swing in the various cafes and tabacs, to listening to my partners band playing on the ship. This got me thinking about the right music for the right time. For example, as mentioned in the previous post, on the way home from meeting up I like to listen to the Sam Smith album, The Thrill of it All . Its melancholy tone just about sums up my mood at having to leave him and return home. We definitely do Goodbyes’ quite well. Its the story of our lives.
All Bridget Jones fans are familiar with Nielson’s ‘I can’t live’ song after her breakup. But what about other music relevant to our lives?
I run to Drum and Bass generally, Rudimentals specifically. The beat is perfect for pounding the seafront where I live. As is the Bruno Mars album Doo-Wops & Hooligans. This years hot summer had me listening to a lot of reggae- it seemed right. Hot summer evenings were ripe for smoky jazz (reinforced by the couple of jazz festivals I managed to get to. One of my lasting memories of a road trip round the Golden Triangle in India a couple of years ago was of a drive down from an old Rajasthan fort, we had climbed in 42 degrees heat, in an old jeep. On the way down we picked up some Indian ladies who sang Hindu folk songs to us as dusk was falling. It was magical and perfect as the sun was going down on that hot, dusty day.
It is the same with books. In the past I have spent a bit of time in the French Alps. Kate Mosse’s series of books set in Carcassonne set the mood perfectly for me, as did reading about the activities of the French Resistance in The Alps in the Second World War. On one of many visits to Amsterdam I read Joanna Harris’s Chocolat. I know it’s French, but it just seemed perfect reading in a Dutch ‘garret’ type apartment overlooking the canals. I guess I don’t want to be reading a cosy Cornish- based Aga Saga when I’m feeling cosmopolitan in Europe. The same as I wouldn’t want to be listening to classical music in jazzy New Orleans. Right music for the right time.
And to finish where we started, a couple of Rouen pictures: