Long before there was “Instagram” with it’s faded edges and retro look, there was Slim Aarons, one of the preeminent photographers of the last century whose portraits from the 50′s through the 70′s depicted the affluent at ease. Every time I see a Slim Aarons photograph I’m instantly transported to a place in time that evokes a casual craziness. The subjects of most of Aaron’s photos were the social glitterati and celebrities of mid century’s playgrounds: from Hollywood to Palm Springs, Palm Beach, Acapulco, Havana, St. Tropez, Nassau, Paris,London and Rio…. usually draped poolside with a cocktail, over-dressed in a resort setting or lounging in impossibly beautifu locations, or as Aarons himself described it, “attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places”. Peering into one of these settings, one imagines a life of dry martini’s, cold lobster salad, perpetual tans and perhaps most importantly, a hint that everything was not quite as it seems. There’s a bit of decadence and instability that lies just beneath the polished patina of wealth- perhaps a scandal, an indiscretion, a recently discovered imposter, an illicit lover, a bank account growing thin. But please darlings, do keep up appearances and above all, have fun!
We’re of a mindset at The MusicFile that art inspires music and vice versa and Slim’s photos open up our flood gates. Our brains go crazy; “wait, wait, remember that version of “Brazil” from Terry Gilliam’s movie that was covered by Arcade Fire? That’d be a good one”. And so dear friends, here you have it, our definitive 2 hour playlist inspired by the works of Slim Aarons. Some songs are of the period, others just recall the vibe. Play this at your next party and see what happens.