As someone who loves discovering new music on a regular basis, and as someone who always needs to have music playing in order to work, pass the time, or function on a basic level, figuring out my favorite music of the year is a difficult task. (The only other list that even rivals in difficulty is the Best TV of the Year list.) Thankfully, Spotify does a helpful roundup of what its users have been listening to throughout the year, which made this list a bit easier to compose.
However, I do take issue with some things that came up on my Spotify Year in Review — especially that my most listened to songs are not necessarily my favorite songs of the year — so I’ve made my own lists. These are my top 5 bands/artists of the year and my top 10 favorite songs (I had to make a lot of really difficult cuts down from 20).
I’ve saved over 40 playlists to my favorites. Yikes. (Photo courtesy of Songza.)
About a year ago, I wrote about Songza, the fantastical wonderland of curated playlists created by professional music nerds for music nerds like myself. One of the most unique aspects of Songza, is the ability to choose any time of the week, then an activity, then a genre of music, then a particular playlist to fit your needs. It’s a wonderful way to discover new music by finding the perfect soundtrack for your day. Or, there are plenty of mixes full of well-known songs, contemporary chart toppers, and classics that are sure to be familiar, and might even be on your current Spotify playlist. In addition to being a super-cool website, Songza is also an extremely popular music app that’s great for any music lover on the go. So, since it’s been a year since my last list of great Songza playlists, here are some more I’ve discovered.
At the Guinness Factory in Dublin, Ireland. Photo courtesy of pmStudent.
What is St. Patrick’s Day all about? Is it a holiday to celebrate Irish heritage and culture? Sure, there are plenty of parades to honor the Irish around the middle of March every year. Although this reason for celebrating may be lost a little bit to the printed t-shirts declaring “Everyone’s Irish on March 17th.” So, is St. Paddy’s about drinking? Well, sure, for a lot of people, St. Patrick’s Day is about getting obscenely, uproariously drunk and having a good time. So long as no one gets into a fight, is arrested, or vomits green. (Although maybe that’s how you define a good time.) Or maybe St. Pat’s is about the color green since there are social—and physical—ramifications if you’re caught without any shamrock-colored clothing on this day.
Seriously, how cool are these glasses?
For me, though, what it comes down to is the music. I have a lot of great St. Paddy’s Day memories and the one thing that ties them all together (other than the holiday itself of course) is the music I listen to every year around this time. With the opening drumbeat and banjo chords of “Drunken Lullabies” by Flogging Molly, I remember wearing my light up shamrock glasses to work last year (which are still one of my coolest possessions, hands down.) Most of my St. Pat’s playlist is Celtic punk music because how can you get through a single St. Patrick’s Day without hearing some Dropkick Murphys? More importantly, why would you want to? So in honor of St. Patrick, here are some of my favorite songs to listen to—and sing along drunkenly to—on this holiday.
If you haven’t heard of Songza, here’s what you need to know: it puts Pandora and Spotify Radio to shame. Songza streams music online–either on their website or through their app–for free (with no ads!) through pre-made playlists based on genre, decade, moods and the time of day.