Hey Jukebox! is a monthly playlist for the Music Gallery.
Each month, a new theme inspires new musical choices linking the Horniman to seasonal celebrations, special exhibitions, performers, or objects.
Sing and dance along to the playlist in this space every Tuesday at 3.30pm. See if you recognise any tracks, or discover something new to add to your own playlists!
December – Peace Songs
Peace is now, and always has been, a universal aspiration. In this season, we bring together music from across cultures that expresses this striving to find more harmony than dissonance: with friends, families, communities, or even just within ourselves.
November – Protest and Resistance
In November we remember the 17th century sedition of Guy Fawkes. Today’s celebratory bonfires and fireworks conceal that, as a member of a persecuted religious minority, his Gunpowder Plot was driven by a sense of profound injustice.
This month, we are taking a look at the music of protest and resistance that aims to bring about change without resort to violence. Depending on its era and focus, the music awakens, articulates, provokes, cajoles, rallies, empathises or criticises. Often, it gives voice to the voiceless.
October – 茶, चाय, Tea (Chá, Chai, Tea)
“Tea is quiet and our thirst for tea is never far from our craving for beauty.” – James Norwood Pratt
This month’s playlist is dedicated to the launch of our latest exhibition, 茶, चाय, Tea. This exhibition is an exploration of all things tea, delving into the world of the individuals who work on the tea plantations, the intricate processes that go into tea production and the sometimes challenging narratives surrounding imperialism and colonial violence associated with the tea trade.
However, tea has inspired artistic expression, cultural customs and national identities for centuries across the globe. It continues to serve as a bridge connecting seemingly distant communities. Our playlist combines diverse voices, genres, and sounds that mirror the rich tapestry of global tea traditions and people’s deep relationships with it.
In addition, we are thrilled to announce special additions to the playlist from our talented Hear it Live! performers, the singer Supriya Nagarajan and harpist Lucy Nolan. They will be gracing us with a duo performance in celebration of the launch of 茶, चाय, Tea on Thursday, 12 October. We hope to see you there!
September – Staff
If music is the gateway to the soul, then this month’s playlist offers a glimpse into the soul of the Horniman.
Members of staff from across the Museum and Gardens were asked simply to contribute their favourite music. The responses represent a superb variety of tastes, from classical to electronic, to Afro beats and everything in between.
Colleagues told us that their choice evoked strong emotions or fond memories, or that it represented their identity or heritage; others chose the music they love to dance to! The result is this incredibly diverse and life-affirming jamboree that lends insight into the beating heart of the Horniman – its staff. We hope you find something in it that speaks to you.
August – Carnival
Welcome to this month’s playlist inspired by the Notting Hill Carnival.
Music has always been crucial in creating a carnival atmosphere and throughout history, different spectacles have drawn on different types of music. A carnival’s celebratory mood has often been accompanied by undertones of mortality and magic.
Accordingly, our playlist brings together evocations of circus parades, masquerade balls and partying, with the re-enactment of battles, and the conjuring of the macabre. The opening and closing songs, associated with Notting Hill, frame the playlist.