Swimming Pool


  • This is a track from Anna Calvi's third album, Hunter. Several of the songs on the record are lyrically preoccupied with rigid gender boundaries. Calvi, who is gay, is keen to emphasize the queerness of her lush operatic sound world. She told Uncut: "I think the sound is completely tied up with my identity and the identity of the record. Every sound on the album was chosen to further the story of each song."

    Calvi added regarding this track: "I wanted to create guitar parts that sounded similar to the way the David Hockney Swimming Pool paintings look. Hockney painted them when there was still a lot of prejudice against being gay and yet his depictions of men are beautiful and full of desire, without any sense of shame. I found this very powerful. I wanted to pay tribute to the idea in this song."
  • Swimming pools have been with us for several millennium – the first known one was The Great Bath at Mohenjo-Daro in Pakistan, which was built in 2500BC. Probably the best known song about the leisure structure is Kendrick Lamar's "Swimming Pools (Drank)," though the swimming pool the Compton MC raps about contains liquor rather than water. Other tracks that talk about swimming pools in the lyrics include:

    "Seigfried" by Frank Ocean ("Maybe I should move. Settle down, two kids and a swimming pool.")

    "The Swimming Song" by Loudon Wainwright III ("And I swam in a swimming pool, Salt my wounds, chlorine my eyes, I'm a self-destructive fool, a self-destructive fool.")

    "Off To The Races" by Lana Del Rey ("Watch me in the swimming pool. Bright blue ripples, you sittin', sippin' on your black Cristal, yeah.")

    "17" by Avril Lavigne ("Sneaking in the neighbor's swimming pool. Yeah, he taught me how to break the rules.")

    "Hippopotamus" by Sparks ("There's a hippopotamus, a hippopotamus, a hippopotamus in my pool. How did it get there, how did it get there, how did it get there? I don't know.")


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