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Monkey Weddings & Summer Sapphires

South Africa to Nova Scotia: Stories, Recipes & Memories

32 Songs To Live & Cook By
Eagle Head Beach Nova Scotia

32 Songs to

Live & Cook By

Music, like food, has an incredible ability to shape our journeys. Songs describe the longings, the passions, the small details we otherwise miss.

Like those of many others, my life’s journey has been lived alongside a soundtrack, as I spent much of my working life in the trenches of the South African music industry as a journalist, and later editor, at a music magazine.


 My longtime friend Iris and I would meet every Thursday for lunch at Fullstop Cafe, our usual spot in Johannesburg and compile and refine - usually over peri-peri calamari and glasses of Savvy B - our list of songs.  We figured that 32 was what it took to define the soundtrack of your life at any given moment in time.

Music has this incredible power to move us, to transport us to another time and place. The original list of 32 songs, are the songs that accompanied my book when I wrote it and have formed the soundtrack to much of my life. 

They have all played a role and told a story in one way or another. All of them will transport me back to a time and place in an instant. The soundtrack doesn't stay static however, as new songs and playlists grow each day and accompany my adventures in the kitchen.

The purpose of sharing this, is for you to create your own list of 32 songs to live and cook by or simply hit play below and share my journey.

Butterfly pea cocktail in vintage glass

A "Monkey Weddings & Summer Sapphires" Playlist

  • Sarah McLachlan – “Fumbling Towards Ecstasy”

  • Stevie Nicks – “Landslide”

  • Style Council – “Long Hot Summer”

  • Winston Mankunku – “Wajikeleza”

  • Rodriguez – “Sugarman”

  • Bright Blue – “Weeping”

  • Brooke Benton – “Rainy Night in Georgia”

  • U2 – “Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”

  • America – “Ventura Highway”

  • Thomas Lang – “Me & Mrs. Jones”

  • Chris Isaak – “Wicked Game”

  • Lloyd Cole – “Jennifer”

  • Cesaria Evora – “Sodade”

  • Frank Sinatra – “Fly Me To The Moon”

  • Via Afrika – “Hey Boy”

  • Sam Roberts Band – “Bridge To Nowhere”

  • Plain White T’s – “Hey There Delilah”

  • Rolling Stones – “Wild Horses”

  • Miriam Makeba – “Pata Pata”

  • The Cure – “Lullaby”

  • Nick Drake – “Northern Sky”

  • Manu Dibango – “Soul Makossa”

  • Marvin Gaye – “Mercy Mercy Me”

  • Everything But the Girl – “Missing”

  • Johnny Clegg – “Scatterlings of Africa”

  • Tracy Chapman – “Fast Car”

  • Deacon Blue – “Loaded”

  • The Waterboys – “The Whole of The Moon”

  • Tears For Fears – “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”

  • Springbok Nude Girls – “Blue Eyes”

  • Shirley Bassey – “Something”

  • Coldplay – “Yellow”

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