All posts filed under: Music

10 Songs to Get You Through That Breakup (Using Kubler-Ross)

An epic breakup deserves an epic playlist, but here’s the problem. Like the beautiful, delicate snowflake that is new love, every sordid, sad split is unique. There are the breakups we caused, the breakups that crushed us, the breakups we sort of suspected were coming from the first date. And within each of the hundreds of different kinds of breakup playlists, there are special songs whose opening notes make only one person gasp in pain — the song that perfectly describes his strong shoulders, her tangled hair, or was the song the two of you heard that one time when you were at that one place you used to go (and now you’re choking back a sob again). So putting together a ten-song breakup playlist is very much like that relationship slated for failure from the get-go: I can’t know I’ll get it right. But using the Kübler-Ross model of grief as our rough guide, we’ll start with the wallowing, move next to resignation, and finally progress to a hearty (if fake for now) pledge …

10 Songs to Whet Your Appetite

There’s nothing like hunger to get a starving-artist songwriter thinking. At least I think that’s true, based on the sheer number of songs dedicated to culinary delights, real and imagined. Herewith a playlist of tasty-sounding songs that celebrate all things scrumptious. 1. Church by Lyle Lovett You shouldn’t start a meal without a moment of gratitude for the labor of those who made it possible, so we’ll start with a Texas prayer that celebrates gospel, country cookin’ and comedy. Lovett’s trapped in a church service where the preacher just won’t wrap up the sermon and let the congregation get to all the deliciousness that awaits it in the parish hall. So he takes matters into his own hands. The message: Even God wants you to get some of that good cornbread. 2. Black Coffee in Bed by Squeeze Technically coffee’s not breakfast, but when all you have left is a stain where your love’s coffee cup once was, well, maybe that’s all you feel like eating today. Though I’ll point out that many a strained …

10 Songs That Will (Happily) Put You to Sleep

I definitely don’t need any help falling asleep these days. Maybe it’s maternal multitasking, maybe it’s the depleting store of hormones, maybe I have adult onset narcolepsy — I never thought to seek a diagnosis. You know who does? My reticent 16-year-old daughter, who comes alive, animated and desirous of conversation just as I am blacking out between my bed sheets. So I’ve put together a 10-song go-to-sleep playlist so potent that even she might nod off at a reasonable hour. I’m hoping it will reset her body clock so she’ll wake up at dawn like I do, ready for that chat (once I’ve had a cup of coffee). 1. Tonight Will Be Fine (Leonard Cohen cover) by Teddy Thompson The title encapsulates the hope we all harbor as we climb into bed: a good night’s sleep uninterrupted by the need to pee, spousal snoring, or sudden leg cramps. Cohen’s unmatched lyrical prowess paired with Thompson’s earnest, pure voice and strumming guitar put you in the right frame of mind for slumber. And if you’re …

Thanks Patricia, Ellen, Danyel and Sue

  The black and white photocopy is riddled with thumbtack holes, pinned to various bulletin boards over the years. A photo of four women music journalists: Patti, the punk poet, Ellen, the trailblazing New Yorker critic, Sue, the one who dared write about rave music and Danyel, who grabbed your arm and took you along to a hip-hop concert. The image illustrated the 1992 Village Voice article by Evelyn McDonnell, “Feminine Critique: The Secret History of Women in Rock Journalism.” When that article came out, I was a devoted music writer and “listings editor” for the City Paper, a Philly alt weekly. For me, the photo offered — and offers — hope, inspiration, a reminder to be myself. The variety of faces and scenes (from Bleecker Street to a bedroom) suggest that great writing can come from anyone, anyplace, anytime, with any approach. Which kind of had nothing to do with being a woman, and yet had everything to do with it. Your voice, your point of view, might be intertwined with gender but it …

Then & Now: Your End-of-Summer Mixtape

Discovering bands that are fresh for your end-o-summer playlist — and actually good to listen to — can be tricky and time-consuming. And you have to know who to trust (“But Aunt Margit, Carly is AWE-some!”) To that end, we’ve compiled a few bands  you might like, based on some old sounds you probably already know. Our picks aren’t all brand new, but a few have gone under the radar, and we insist you listen: 1. Slightly sappy, ’70s singer songwriters Then: Seals & Croft, “Summer Breeze.” Now: The Autumn Defense, “Back of My Mind.” While their album Once Around (2010) isn’t new, we can’t get enough of these two ex-Wilco bandmates and their California, easy, breezy pop groove. “Back of My Mind” is a standout for September.   2. Edgy, unclassifiable R&B Then: Erykah Badu, “On & On.” Now: Lianne La Havas, “Forget.” Is Your Love Big Enough (2012)  is a melange of jazz, pop, R&B and rock, and this 24-year-old’s emotional debut album is a stunner (and woefully overlooked.)   3. Peace, love …