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Sunday Soul – CLOUDMAKERS
Year 11 – Playlist 25/52 – For the week of October 5th 2014
Prometheus, the God damned for giving fire and flesh to humantiy was once lashed to a crag on Mount Kaukasos (he got punnished a lot for doing humans various solids) and was supposed to watch humanty suffer for eternity. Then, quite unexpectedly these weird mists began to form around him and he got scared and started one of those Greek God monologues that take forever, but don’t say much of anything… right? Well this one basically translates to “Wow, look at all this weird mist, I don’t know what it is and it scares me.” Wouldn’t you be completely freaked out if there was no such thing as clouds or rain and you were getting nailed for stealing from God and then all of a sudden this creepy dark mist started to swirl all around you? I know I totally would.
Well then it got even weirder. The creepy mist started to sing… like all the voices of the clouds at once began to explain that they were the cloudmakers, the nymphs of the Okeanos river who carried pitchers of water into low slung hiding places and nourished the earth. They said they loved Prometheus for his kindness to humanity and they wanted to comfort him. Prometheus was totally down to be comforted by a hoard of barely dressed nymths while lashed to a crag at the top of a mountain, and he said a lot of things (which basically amount to “ok, sweet… please try to comfort me.”) but then the clouds began to pour rain all over Prometheus, and the earth below. It was the cloudmaker’s tears. And forever after we have had something called “rain.”
All through Greek and Roman mythology (what we call their history now because we believe other things) these sweet little Nephelum show up in groups to sing at various punnishments, and endings. They are in many ways the moralists of all Greek and Roman history.
In meteorology, a cloud is a visible mass of liquid droplets or frozen crystals made of water or various chemicals suspended in the atmosphere above the surface of a planetary body. These suspended particles are also known as aerosols and are studied in the cloud physics branch of meteorology. So it turns out that the Greeks were actually making anthropacentric fun of the clouds. Unable to imagine forces beyond their own visible control they came up with barely clothed young ladies to carry pitchers up to the skies. I kind of like that better than the modern scientific concepts of aerosolized water particles which are lighter than air until they aren’t and then they’re rain. But this is all tediously academic – condensation, evaporation and precipetation right? Nothing new to write home about.
The first time I flew on an airplane by myself I was five or six years old. A lot of amazing things happened to me on planes alone, but I’ll never forget seeing the clouds from above for the first time. I laughed and stared and no one could have pried me out of that PSA rear left window seat for anything. I wanted to be in those clouds, and they looked better to me than anything I’d ever seen on earth.
Granted I was only five, I’ve seen many things on earth since then which give the endless beauty of a sea of clouds a fair run for their money, but I’ve held the idea ever since that in those clouds is a temple, and beautiful nudes bathe and swim, sing and fly through them. Often they’d perch on the high points and consider the world, and the stars. And when it rains, they are pouring their hearts out onto the earth. I swear at five I hadn’t heard of Prometheus yet, nor had I read a scrap of Greek mythology. So the connection between the beauty of the sky and the romantic wanderlust to exist without clothes in an endless and carefree state of stargazing is not unique. I believe in many ways it’s both what’s actually wrong with me, as well as what’s absolutely wonderful about me.
In 1907 the Nimrod expedition, lead by Ernest Shackleton, set out to explore the antarctic. The group’s main target was to become the first human beings to reach the south pole of the earth. Naturally they didn’t make it. They did, however, get further south than anyone had before them arriving at 88° 23′ South, just 97.5 nautical miles from the pole (pretty close guys!) Along the way they encountered a mountain just west of the Beardmore Glacier which always had a unique cloud near her summit. This mountain came to be known as the cloudmaker, and she proved to be an essential landmark of their cartography making the journey’s relative success possible. In 1907 there were no heaters, and there wasn’t any high tech materials, or anything like that. Those British dudes must have been really fucking cold. I only really like weather between like 50° and 70°F. Call me an Orchid, but I’m a San Franciscan and I just don’t like it when it’s cold, or hot. And when it’s humid… forget it. I fail completely.
My family used to have this amazing siamese cat named Nimrod. I loved that cat. It only had one of it’s fangs and it kind of hung out of his mouth when he was chill in’. If you left him alone for too long he would just look at you with his fang hanging out of his mouth and let out with this amazing howl, “Mwwaaaww…” It wasn’t sweet, or light at all. It was really loud and deep. It scared you if you weren’t sure where he was. I loved that cat. He’d climb into bed with me and I’d scratch him and scratch him right on the head and he’d close his eyes and stick out his chin and just drool all over the covers. Man, I loved that cat.
So where are your clouds? What barely clothed goddesses are gathered around you now that you’re lashed to a crag at the top of a mountain who’s name you neither remember nor can you prounounce? Which rains from their tears are nourishing your gardens and villages? Isn’t it just possible that these nymphs and all these clouds are here at our request? Isn’t it likely that what we can not see, we simply can not bear? And the love calling to us from places we can not see is the voice of our own heart?
Let it come down. Bring the clouds, and bring the rains. I open my arms from this sweet and sultry San Francisco Indian Summer night and welcome the red and the brown, and call autumn by her name, and welcome these leaves, these clouds and this breeze into my empty and smouldering arms.
Thank you for listening. See you next week.
Here is the track listing for Sunday Soul: CLOUDMAKERS
1. Sights – Until The Ribbon Breaks Re-imagination – London Grammar
2. Cheryl (In Heaven Mix) – Kres
3. Minimal Effort – Jamesen Re & Danny Bonnici
4. Feed Me Diamonds – Oliver Nelson Remix – MNDR
5. He Can Make You Feel – Deephope Dub Mix – Kiano & Below Bankock
6. 2 Bullets (Disaster) – Michoacan
7. If You Wait – Riva Starr Remix – London Grammar
8. Starwaves – Jimpster Remix – Kirk Degiorgio
9. Bodka Spiritual – Sonodab
10. No Money Blues – Duke Dumont
11. What Do I Gotta Do – Eric Kupper Club Mix – Urban Soul
12. Sweet Love – Red Box Lounge
13. The Renaissance – Jazzy Eyewear
14. Green Eyed – St. Stereo
15. Sunday Soul – Program ID
16. If You Wait – Budo Remix – London Grammar
17. Sunday Soul – Program ID
Year 11 – Playlist 25|52
5 October 2014
Total Running Time: 01 Hour 34 Minutes
May the stars above you shimmer and shine, guiding your heart always, all of the time. May they guide you sweetly, all the way home. And may all your sundays have soul.