Linen Shirts & Lemonade

I’d like to resurrect the slow dance.

Yes, I know. It’s not really dead, but its prominence at casual social gatherings among my friends and loved ones has diminished continually throughout my life. I recall a time as a young boy seeing couples at backyard barbecues swaying their hips between sips from a bottle of Bartles & Jaymes or a tall, gold can of Coors, the light butt taps in time on pastel-colored madras shorts and flirty sundresses, the meeting of the eyes, the widening of the smile, the soft nuzzle, and then the emphatic twirl.

Affectionately called “Linen Shirts & Lemonade,” this is a mix of tunes that comprised much of my summer, a summer spent soaking up my last days as a Chicagoan, strutting my way through Mississippi, boot-scooting across the southern United States, bobbing along the rushing Colorado River waters, spinning my legs and my dizzy head up a Vail trail, and driving -- oh my, the driving -- all over California. As I was compiling them for you to enjoy at your Labor Day weekend festivities, I came to realize many of these songs rekindled that swaying late-summer yard party that I miss so much. Listen. You can hear it: arriving to the buzz of a cocktail hour that’s louder than the croak of a cicada field, hitting the dance floor hard with a skip in your step and your hands in the air, and then searching into the dark of night for your sweetheart to tell her that you love her and then give her a nice firm turn and careful dip. And after you have wound your way down a moonlit road, you stand with her in the doorway, unsure if those are the stars in her eyes or the shine of affection. You end the night with a kiss, salty and sweet and better than any dessert created by man or God. Sunday Candy.

Thank you for continuing to follow my playlists. And thank you to all the laborers who keep this country working as well as it does. I hope this mix, Linen Shirts & Lemonade, truly does aid in your enjoyment of a much-deserved day off.

Linen Shirts & Lemonade

  1. Shel Silverstein - Hug o’ War

  2. Patrinell Staten - I Let A Good Man Go

  3. Soul Survivors - Expressway to Your Heart

  4. J.J. Jackson - But It’s Alright

  5. Skyy - Call Me

  6. 3rd Bass - The Gas Face

  7. Poor Righteous Teachers - Rock Dis Funky Joint

  8. Gang Starr - Step in the Arena

  9. John Holt - Sister Big Stuff

  10. The Kinks - Picture Book

  11. Nicki Bluhm and the Gramblers - Mr. Saturday Night

  12. Eric Clapton - Can’t Let You Do It

  13. Wilco - Someone to Lose

  14. Angel Olsen - Shut Up Kiss Me

  15. Margaret Glaspy - Emotions And Math

  16. Manu Chao - Bongo Bong

  17. Three Dog Night - Shambala

  18. Shake Russell - Troubles

  19. Grateful Dead - Fire On The Mountain

  20. Old & In The Way - Wild Horses

  21. Van Morrison & Brooks Arthur - Sante Fe / Beautiful Obsession

  22. Bill Withers - Sweet Wanomi

  23. JJ Grey & Mofro - Tupelo Honey

  24. Faces - Love Lives Here

  25. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers - No Reason to Cry

  26. Doc Watson - Deep River Blues

  27. Dave Rawlings Machine - Sweet Tooth

  28. Willie Watson - Bring It With You When You Come

  29. Paul Simon - Peace Like a River

  30. Whiskeytown - Everything I Do

  31. Joe South - Games People Play

  32. Tony Joe White - I Want You

  33. Paul Revere & The Raiders - Powder Blue Mercedes Queen

  34. Junction - Sorcerer

  35. The Guess Who - Ramblin Gamblin Man

  36. Marcia Griffiths - Here I Am Baby

  37. Vulfpeck - Back Pocket

  38. James Taylor - Day Tripper

  39. Donny Hathaway - Magnificent Sanctuary Band

  40. The Cannonball Adderley Quintet - Mercy, Mercy, Mercy

  41. Isaac Delusion - Midnight Sun

  42. Loudon Wainwright III - Hollywood Hopeful

  43. Vince Bell - Sun & Moon & Stars

  44. Gene & Debbe - Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye

  45. George Harrison - Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea

  46. Bob Wills - Stay All Night (Stay A Little Longer)

  47. Josh Garrels - Farther Along

  48. Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment - Sunday Candy

You can find the whole thing, Linen Shirts & Lemonade on Spotify.