Hello everyone,

I meant to have this up and running last week but hey, the beauty of summer is that it can start whenever – the end of school, the Memorial Day weekend, if the mercury creeps over 70, etc. And so, with today, we start yet another year in our long-running Summer Songs series here at Soul Sides. I know it’s cliche to say that each year will be “bigger and better” but I’ve been more ambitious in the last few years, inviting more folks to contribute their take on “what does summer sound like to you?”

The first two posts are already up on our dedicated site – one from writer Michael Gonzales, thinking back on his summers in Pittsburgh. The other comes from writer-turning-scholar Pete L’Official, taking us on a massive tour of summer musings. In the weeks to come, anticipate contributions from everyone from music historians Lauren Onkey and Scott Saul to incomparable mixmasters DJs Cosmo Baker and Monk One to political/cultural columnist Ta-Nehisi Coates to DJ-turned-soul singer Mayer Hawthorne (and many more!)

Also check out my man Jeff Weiss’ “Summer Jamz” series, rescued from Stylus Magazine. Mo’ summer songs, mo’ better.

Meanwhile, I’m posting (through a national firewall no less!) from Shanghai, wanting to remind folks out here I’m DJing at The Shelter on Friday night w/ DJs V-Nutz and J-Rocc.