But more than ever I have realised again and again how music can keep us going when times get tough. I have found it especially hard to gee myself up when I was working another early Saturday morning and made up an ‘Upbeat Mix’ on the ipod to blast out loud and proud as I work away.
It has taken some tweaking with some songs removed and others added over the weeks, but now I have about 6 hours of songs that keep me positive and bouncing along when my determination starts to waiver.
The problem I had is that while I adore some songs (like ‘Black flies’ by Ben Howard) the tempo is way too slow and the song is too atmospheric and moody to keep my feet tapping. So I had to choose songs that had enough oomph to give me a boost and which had a good tempo to keep pushing me onwards. Some people would refer to a list like this as an exercise list and I guess you could use it for that. But for me this is a playlist that buoys me up and keeps me positive as I work away in the darker autumn and winter months.
I’ll give you a brief run down of some of the tracks.
So I start off with ‘Impressions’ by Wes Montgomery. A nice jazz number to ease me into things, before hitting a rock n roll section with Johnny B Goode by Chuck Berry, La Bamba and various tracks by The Beach Boys amongst others. This leads into some old skool soul, most notably various tracks from The Blue Brothers soundtrack. I then jump to rap and more modern stuff, this includes Will Smith, Eminem, Black Eyed Peas, some more dancy stuff from Moby and my one kitsch, camp indulgence ‘Call Me Maybe’ by Carly Rae Jepson (god damn it, I know I lose cool points for that last one, but I love that catchy little number!).
We move onto the rock and metal section with AC/DC, Electric Six, Foo Fighters, Iron Maiden, Metallica, System of a Down to name but a very few. We now go onto a bit of a mish mash to finish things up. This includes Huey Lewis, Mumford and Sons, Two Door Cinema Club, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Imelda May and long list of other artists where I have chosen a single or maybe two tracks of each.
All in all this playlist does its job very well and not only does it push me to work harder when I am flagging, but I often finish it in a better mood than when I started. I know I have spoken about the medicinal benefits of music in the past, but this playlist is a perfectly tailored, aural neon pill that motivates and inspires me every time