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By John Helmer, Moscow

When I was optimistic, I used to mark the passing summers by the hit songs that were playing on the radio as I sweated away at jobs that paid me the money I badly needed.  

“She loves you” was the summer of 1964 for me; “Summer in the City” was 1966.   “Nutbush City Limits” was 1973.  Ten years later, in the summer of 1983, “Nutbush” was the backing theme for radio programmes I produced for Claudia Wright in Melbourne – the last time she was allowed to broadcast on an Australian radio station.  In 1995, though it seems to have been earlier, there was “If God was one of us”.   

In this wartime the lyrics can’t mean what they used to. Now it’s not a good idea to be sentimental when the job is to scribble until Labor Day.

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