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Bethany Cosentino of Best Coast’s ‘Mellow Joy’ Playlist

Photo: Eddie Chacon

With everyone sequestered and self-quarantining due to the coronavirus, we’ve asked our favorite artists to come up with playlists that keep you entertained. Here’s Bethany Cosentino from Best Coast:

You’d think that during a time like this I might be drawn to sunny happy pop music, but in a twist of classic water sign behavior (I’m a Scorpio/Cancer rising) I have been listening to a lot of downtempo mellow music. I think an important thing for all of us to do right now is just lean in to whatever mood we’re in – there seems to be a really intense pressure to be walking through this period with grace and dignity and an attitude of 100% hope, which I do have at times, but in reality- not all of the time, and that’s ok. A big part of my own journey of growth has been to recognize that whatever I’m currently feeling is allowed and I need to accept it or else it will never go away. When you run from feelings, they always catch up with you- that’s the fucked up part of life, haha. We can never just “escape” – our brains are too powerful, they won’t let us!

Here’s a collection of songs that momentarily make me feel like I can “escape” or rather – lean into the not so joyous feelings of this current time. I know everything will be ok at the end of this, but while we are stuck in the middle of it, let’s remind each other that there is no right way to do this (other than staying the fuck inside!)

Love to you all during this weird time,

“It’s All I Can Do” – The Cars
This is by far my favorite Cars songs, I’m obsessed with the melody, especially the synth line in the chorus. I’ve always interpreted it to be a song about obsession and not being able to let go of someone or something – a concept I’m sure we’re all familiar with, especially right now!

“Saddle Tramp” – Marty Robbins
A master at creating joy within melancholy. The guitar is so beautiful in this song. It’s a great song to sweep to! You get into a rhythm, haha.

“I Must Not Think Bad Thoughts” – X
I mean, the song title alone is probably the mantra of most of us right now. I love the slow build of this song, it’s so empowering, both lyrically and sonically.

“You Are A Light”- Pavement
I’m a big fan of the ballad-y Pavement songs, like when they’re being vaguely “country.” The instrumental interlude of this song is one of my favorite pieces of instrumental music ever.

“Running Back” – Thin Lizzy
One of my favorite Thin Lizzy songs. Just an incredibly written song, all across the board. Infectious melody and relatable lyrics – my two favorite things in any song.

“Swingin Party” – The Replacements
This is one of those songs that I’m jealous I didn’t write. It’s so simple at its core, not too many chord’s, really bare production – but it just is one of those songs that hits you right in your gut.

“True Grit” – Glen Campbell
Glen Campbell is one of my favorite voices in all of music. This song is so beautiful and hopeful. The string arrangements are beautiful too.

“Happy” – Carpenters
Karen Carpenter is another one of my favorite voices in all of music. I love the fingerpicking guitar happening in the intro to this song below her voice, they compliment each other so perfectly. a joyful song, but with a bit of a mid-tempo vibe. Love that you can have a song called “happy” that isn’t so in your face “this song is a happy song!”

“Nighttime” – Big Star
One of my favorite slow, acoustic jams ever. There’s really no words, it’s just beautiful.

“Blue Light” – Mazzy Star
An all-time favorite. Really good end of the day wind-down song. Highly recommended for a candlelit bath at the end of a weird day.”