The Soundtrack for a Year.

I like to make mix CDs at the beginning of each season, or during the season to help me get through the particular months associated with them. If I do it far enough in advance, or if I have the free time, I try to send some copies of this mix off to friends, to share with them some music that currently interests me and to give them a small peak into what’s most recently been filling my head. I wish I could say that I’m as diligent with this as I would like to be, but as with most of the projects in my life, it completes with the thousands of other things I want to be doing.

But this year I was determined to get an End of Year mix together. For as un-musically inclined I may personally be, I love music. Love listening to it, finding new artists, discovering new bands, going to shows. I like movies a lot, but don’t gravitate towards that as naturally as others do. Music is my thing. It’s the way I best express myself, it’s where I find myself and find truths about my relationships with others. (Much to the chagrin of many an ex, I’m sure…).

So, while friends and relatives were prepping their Christmas letters and family portraits, I was piecing together what this year was for me through the songs that I played mercilessly on repeat for days, weeks, and sometimes months on end.

I thought about giving a little description of each song, but frankly, the thought exhausts me. Plus, I really don’t think there’d be any way that I could properly express the ways that these songs helped shape this year for me–the instant memories that seeing the title for each one sparks. Though not totally perfect, these are in a sort of chronological order. I’ve already been thinking of songs or artists that I forgot to include, but I feel that overall this provides a pretty accurate representation of my past year.

Would love to know if any songs stand out for you as definitive tracks for 2014. Feel free to post links to them in the comments. 

1. Lost Cause -Beck

2. Leave the Door Wide Open -No

3. Suzanne -Nina Simone

4. For Now I Am Winter- Olafur Arnalds

5. Annie’s Song -Sunshine Club

6. Take Me Home -Perfume Genius

7. First Breath After Coma -Explosions in the Sky

8. Good Arms vs. Bad Arms -Frightened Rabbit

9. Frankie’s Gun! -The Felice Brothers

10. Carousel Ride -RubbleBucket

11. Riptide -Vance Joy

12. Visions -Saintseneca

13. Goshen ’97 -Strand of Oaks

14. Civilian -Wye Oak

15. Tarifa -Sharon Van Etten

16. Tender, Sentimental Love -Abraham Lass

17. Despair -Yeah Yeah Yeahs

18. The Big Ship -Brian Eno




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