When I make a playlist, I mostly operate on a gut feeling. What does this feeling sound like? And, how does this sound make me feel? At the end of the day, it’s my ears guiding me towards what feels like their destiny.
I let my ears wander recently for MumBoss and constructed these custom playlists for founder Rachel Monique Maskell’s first MumBox mailing for Mother’s Day 2017. MumBox is a “retreat in a box” for ladies who deserve a time out for some serious self-care. I hope these playlists help to transport, uplift and invigorate listeners.
FLYING HIGH ON GRATITUDE
For “flying high on gratitude,” I chose songs that soar. They go high because they also swoop low, with lyrics that convey vulnerability or seeking. My sense is that true gratitude is the result of a journey—of living, learning and loving. I started with Autograf’s “Heartbeat” because that is life itself—and what better place to start a practice of thanks. We’re alive. Even better, this song takes a solitary thing and connects it to something greater, someone else: “Give me one more chance. My heartbeat won’t let you down. Anything you need, I got it.” Camikaze’s “Shadows” continues that sense of safety in others (“Hold me now/Never ever let me touch the ground.”) Tayps’s “Better Way” and Bolting Bits’ “Moon” are quietly centering, while AMTRAC’s “Some of Them” takes flight again with delightfully peculiar vocals. Now a song called “Die Young” might seem like a buzzkill, but the Sylvan Esso tune (along with PNAU’s tribal “Chameleon”) feels like pumping blood—THESE are the sounds of living. A profound cover of Ben E. King’s “Stand By Me” offers some final notes of strength.
The key word for the songs in this playlist is flow. Deep and twisty, Flume’s “Depth Charge” gets us going; I imagine moving like a vine or stretching like a cat in the sun. Feral Fauna’s “Tincture” is all feminine seduction, and Feverkin’s “Still Can’t Fall” distills that charm to an even purer form. Thomas Jack’s remix of José Gonzalez’s “This Is How We Walk on the Moon” sends us, gently at first, into orbit, where it is warm and glowing, and the flow gains force. Raptures of Lovers’ “passionfruit” and Heimer’s “Damn, Wingman” twinkle as they move, and Clay’s “Wildthing/3’s A Crowd” brings back a slinky femininity that is both beautiful and badass. Alejandro Mosso’s epic “Tassaouit N’akhazi” is a time to go inward and find those forces that nourish body and soul.
SPREAD THE LOVE
Love is all there is. So it was important to me that that this playlist had a feeling of joy. You can’t get much more effervescent than Metroplane’s “Bahp,” which literally pops with the human voice. Bien’s “Crowd Goes Wild” is a lil victory dance that the next song, Trace’s “Honey” (Maholo remix), transports to the dancefloor. SoulChef’s “Keepin’ It Real” has an important message about loving yourself (can’t forget that!); then Black Loops “4 the Lovers” celebrates the connection between two people. Atish’s “Twiddles” is just pure radiance, and I love it. Michael Mayer & Joe Goddard’s “For You” is its own kind of love letter, while YesYou’s “Be Mine” is one heckuva holy devotion.
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