I've just spent a long afternoon and evening on my allotment which is in the middle of Hyde Park in Leeds. The houses round here are largely back to back terraces, and the houses that do have a garden generally don't do much with it; either concreted for car space or the classic rented accommodation mix of matresses, nettles and bottles. So, come a sunny day like today, everyone uses the park as one big communal garden, and it's a fab vibe, rammed with folks arsing about.
No surprise then that Sitting In The Park has been going round my head all day. It was written and orginally released by Billy Stewart on Chess records in 1965, the same year as his utterly gorgeous soul slowie I Do Love You. Both of those records push the same blissy buttons of reverie in me as Bloodstone's Natural High and a fistful of Chi-Lites and Delfonics classics.
Really, if you want a big favour out of me or need to tell me that you've accidentally burnt my flat down, just play me I Do Love You and Natural High first and I'm sure I'll be fine about it.
Despite Billy's wonderful work on Sitting In The Park, I'm giving you Georgie Fame's cover from the following year. Where Billy gave it a vocal backing, Fame went for brass with a great trebly Caribbean tone, augmented by floaty flute which perfectly counterpoints his low jazzy voice.
Balmy, languid, like dandelion seeds blowing past on a hot breeze, sparkling like sunlight on rippling water, this record has a perfect beautiful drifty summer feeling underpinned with just a pinch of melancholy.
[MP3 deleted to make way for new ones. Sorry!]