The Music and Movies that Made Summer 2014 Memorable

Well, that was fun.

While the summer of 2014 has come and gone, the memories are still as fresh as the fall air. And so are the music and the movies.

After all, ever since we can remember there were those songs that and films that defined a summer – whether that meant campfire favourites from Dave Matthews or Tragically Hip or the Biggie and Tupac you used to blast, windows down from your first car (or your parents’ car). As for the films, things like 1995’s Clueless made our pre-teen summer complete with new catch phrases and we can still clearly recall the thrill in our young minds of summer Hollywood blockbusters past like Armageddon and Men in Black (cue Will Smith’s theme song).

To this day, when you hear those songs or watch these films, it’s difficult not to be immediately transported back in time and able to clearly recall exactly how you were feeling at that time. That could mean powerful memories of the summer you fell in love for the first time, the summer you took that epic trip or even that summer where you blasted that empowering break-up anthem on repeat (admit it).

How will you remember summer 2014? If you don’t know, grab a glass of Aveleda Wine, sit back, and soak in everything that made it one for the books.

Here’s how we will:

It seemed that there was some sort of music festival happening every weekend this summer in our fine city.

Field Trip
Kicked off the summer at Fort York with a weekend-long festival (June 7th and 8th), which, in addition to things like a Drake General Store pop-up and ample of food trucks, featured the music of some of the country’s most talented artists. This meant Broken Social Scene (who were joined on stage by Gord Downie), The Constantines, Interpol, Lowell, The Darcys, The Kill, Shad and Chvrches, just to name a few.

Digital Dreams
Amped things up for the more “energetic set,” in its return to Ontario Place once again over Canada Day weekend in all its beat-pumping glory. This year’s lineup included headliners Tiesto, Deep Dish, Dash Berlin, Eric Prydz ad Nervo, among others. It also inspired no shortage of short shorts, tanned skin and neon-clad young professionals.

Ovo Fest
If hip-hop’smore your thing (and you were quick or connected enough to score tickets) you probably hit the Molson Amphitheatre on August 4th for homegrown hip-hop star Drake’s annual OVO Fest, named after his brand, Our Very Own. Back for its 5th year, this year’s event was admittedly a little less big name-packed (we mean, he has had Stevie Wonder in the past) but featured Usher and 50 Cent and a smoke-filled sea of passionate, dancing fans.

Jay-Z and Beyonce
Of course, the summer also saw some major YP concerts. Perhaps one if the most buzzed about, however, was the Jay-Z and Beyoncé concert at the Air Canada Centre on July 9th for their On the Run tour. Described by many as the show of the summer, the concert featured ample costume changes, surprises video montages and a mind blowing 42-song set list.

Summer 2014 was also an exciting one on the big screen, with quality films that will mark the summer when we re-watch them years. Here are just a few…

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was one of the most buzzed about films of the summer among the young professional set. Why? Despite the visual stimulation offered by over-the-top special effects and machine-gun bearing apes (and the always stunning Keri Russell), the film tells a powerful war story of two competing worldviews. It’s rich with themes of betrayal, moral dilemma, power struggles, acceptance and what it means to be human (and an ape).

X-Men: Days of Future Past is one that YPs kind of had to see, if nothing else than for the nostalgic element. It’s also jam-packed with action (shocking, we know) and includes both the old and new cast. Like Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, it also touched on social and political issues of a small but powerful (as in super human powers) minority. Oh, and it’s set in the 70s, which is always fun.

Guardians of the Galaxy was a must-see for young professionals for a few reasons. Adapted from the Marvel comic book series of the same name, it featured no shortage of Hollywood heavy-hitters (Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel and Glenn Close to name a few) incredible costumes and – somewhat rare for action-packed blockbusters – incrediblequick-witted humour. It’s simply a fun film. We’re not the only ones to think so; the film grossed over $633 million worldwide.

Boyhood proved that it didn’t have to be an action and special effect-filled blockbuster to leave a mark on summer 2014. If you haven’t heard about it yet (you should have) the most notable part of this coming-of-age story is the fact that it was filmed with the same cast (which includes names like Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke) over a 12-year period as we watch the lead character literally grow-up throughout. The nostalgic film will inevitably cause reflection on your own childhood and all the good, bad and ‘crazy’ of your own family.

To keep summer alive in our hearts, for your listening pleasure (and ours too, they’ve been on repeat all day), we’ve created a couple of notable playlists.

You’re welcome.

First, for all your high-energy club beats, we caught up with Toronto DJ Perry Gilman, otherwise known as PG13 (who has residencies at Thompson Hotel, Fstop, Switch, Muzik, and Brassai) for his top 5 house songs of the summer…

Top 5 Club Anthems of Summer 2014

Route 94 ft Jess Glynne – My Love
Faul& Wad Ad vs. Pnau – Changes
RAC ft Matthew Koma – Cheap Sunglasses (Viceroy Remix)
Zeds Dead ft Twin Shadow – Lost You
Tove Lo – Habits  orKeys N Krates – All The Time (Tove Lo Flip)

But we also wanted to add a few of our own…

Top 5 Notable Tracks for Summer 2014

Seinabo Sey – Younger
Disclosure – Latch
One Republic – Love Runs Out
Sam Smith – Stay with me
Maroon 5 – Maps

To complement that playlist, a glass of Aveleda wine should make the perfect fit. And speaking of perfect fits, stay tuned for all the arts-related content you crave from our friends at Aveleda Wines.