Music and Food

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Craig McCord

Craig McCord › Craig possesses 23 guitars and cannot play any of them. He likes fresh grilled sardines with a ...


Throughout history, music and food have been co-conspirators.

On the International Repertory of Music Literature (RILM) I recently read this:

Many great composers and performers were connoisseurs, and some even contributed to the world of recipes. Food and wine often inspired new works and influenced the creative process of the composer; both have been the subject of many musical works from drinking songs to the savory gastronomical and culinary references in the operas of Mozart, Rossini, and Verdi. Food has also served as payment for musicians, or has been part of their allotment.

Nowadays music and food have a more modern bent. Kasey and Matthew Hickey are the creators of The Turntable Kitchen. They explain their mission on their website, “Devoted to all things delicious and melodic. We’re connecting food and music.” Sounds good to us.

The Los Angeles Times said this about The Turntable Kitchen:

Through Turntable Kitchen, the Hickeys hope to introduce more people to the natural connection between food and music. To that end, Matthew picks the music and Kasey chooses the recipes. Most recently, the duo launched the Turntable Kitchen Pairings Box, a monthly subscription in which subscribers receive a hand-assembled box in the mail with a custom-mixed vinyl record featuring favorite and up-and-coming bands; seasonal, themed recipes; dried ingredients; and suggested pairing and tasting notes.

Devoted to all things delicious and melodic. We’re connecting food and music. -Turntable Kitchen

The Southern Ground Music and Food Festival has been putting these two ingredients together since 2011. The first fest was held in that culinary destination, Charleston, South Carolina with another dining mecca, Nashville Tennessee becoming a Southern Ground venue in 2012. Zak Brown from the Zak Brown Band and his on-the-road chef, Rusty Hamlin founded the gathering to celebrate the southern heritage of rock ‘n’ roll, blues, and gospel and for dishes like jambalaya, fried chicken, and barbecue. At last year’s festival you could have seen Willie Nelson & Family while chowing on Stephanie Izard’s “Sloppy Goat” sandwich made with farm-raised goat meat topped with rosemary slaw served on a freshly baked roll. Yeah, baby!

Chef Rusty Hamlin explained their goal:

“The idea was to host a music festival where the food served was not only up to par with the music, but part of the festival itself.”

Music and food is just plain fun. Of course, there are those who are, shall we say, way into it.

Album Tacos seem to think a taco on the cover will make everything a little spicier. We agree. Check out their Tumblr.

Joe Bastianich has his own band, The Ramps. Food is the New Rock has a podcast where Restaurant Man himself talks food, music, Gordon Ramsey and Graham Elliot.

Speaking of those who are way into it, Songs for Eating and Drinking, has an unbelievable collection of music to eat and drink by. They say this on their site:

This project is a collaboration between table guru Michael Hebb, and renowned photographer/director Chase Jarvis. Hatched from Hebb’s underground one-pot dinners, and documented with Jarvis’ unmistakable eye.

A hip record company has figured out that pushing out stories about music and food will be well received by the music crowd. Matador Records puts up tantalizing food shots (with recipes) right alongside a list of bands, discographies, tour info and, of course, band merchandise.

What would a post about music and food be without a tasty list of records with food themes?

So here you go (in no particular order). Pump up the jams and go cook something delicious. Yeah, baby.

Dixie Chicken – Little Feat

Green Onions – Booker T & the MGs

Jambalaya (On The Bayou) – Hank Williams

Polk Salad Annie – Tony Joe White

Pulling Mussels (From The Shell) – Squeeze

Know Your Chicken – Cibo Matto

Potato Head Blues – Louis Armstrong

Ham ‘N’ Eggs – A Tribe Called Quest

She Cooks Me Cabbage – Champion Jack Dupree

Rock Lobster – The B-52s

What do you listen to while you cook? What song would you add to our list?

Photo credit: Craig McCord