October leaves me cold. Nothing can stop the official end of British Summertime, and Hallowe’en, and the downhill slide to the festive season. As leaves and people fall, time marches on. The recent death of Pharoah Sanders wounded me (more so than a certain other ruler). I had to conclude this month's Boat Floaters playlist, curated exclusively for Meet Bernard, with the legendary jazz saxophonist’s You’ve Got to Have Freedom (cheers, Mr Scruff, for opening the gateway).
But before you get there, enjoy 33 wonderful, magical, mystical tunes – old and new – that explore love, loss, and lust through the media of disco, reggae, soul, funk, and gospel music.
I’ve been fortunate enough to meet the Pharoah, at a Jazz Cafe gig in north London a decade or more ago. After a good 90 minutes of wowing the crowd with his sax skills, he did something I’ve never seen before – and will probably never see again. He tipped the saxophone upside down, and blew into the bell, from where the noise traditionally comes. Because the instrument was warm, though playing, he explained, he could create sonic vibrations. And he was right. So bizarre.
At the time, I was a keen amateur photographer and captured the gig using blurry, neon filters. I blew two of my favourite shots onto A1 canvases and hung them. Over the years they have been relegated to the loft. I think now is the time to dust them off and re-hang them. Time may advance, but our memories are frozen, thankfully.
If you connect with this unmixed selection I think you’d enjoy exploring my Boat Floaters Mixcloud profile (see here), where you will find two-hour mixes for Loose FM, plus upbeat (“waterfall”) and more chilled (“slow flow”) mixes from earlier in the year.
Thanks for your support.
Yours in music,
Ollie (Boat Floaters)