You know those songs that literally give you goosebumps? You know the ones. The ones that send chills up your spine? Sometimes they may actually bring you to tears for no particular reason, or you may associate the song with a specific impressionable moment in your life. Now listen to me: You have to be very fragile with these songs. One listen too many and suddenly the chill (and come to think of it, the thrill) is gone. I almost think you have to ration out your exposure to such songs, lest they lose their charm. It also helps not to listen to too much mainstream radio.
So without any further adieu, here is my list of chill-inducing songs, in no particular order:
1) In a Daydream, Freddy Jones Band. It’s that song you want to listen to when life is good
2) By Your Side, Sade (especially the live version). Most. Romantic. Song. Ever.
3) Higher Ground, Red Hot Chili Peppers (originally by Stevie Wonder). I imagine myself doing a perfectly choreographed flash mob dance performance to this, much like the jazz class in the chick flick Center Stage.
4) One Fine Day, Natalie Merchant version. I listen to this when I’m down and want to know that things will be better; Natalie’s voice is calm and reassuring.
5) Sweet Jane, Cowboy Junkies version. Truly haunting and pretty. I refuse to watch the movie Natural Born Killers since I hear this song is played during a shooting spree. Talk about ruining it for me.
6) Misguided Angel, Cowboy Junkies again. Daddy doesn’t like the guy she’s fallen in love with, but she’ll love him the rest of her days.
7) If You Were Here. The original was done by The Thompson Twins, and I love it as well…however the remake by The Cary Brothers for the film Easy A is even better.
8) The Blower’s Daughter, Damien Rice. Ah yes if we could all be as breathtaking as Natalie Portman and have this beautiful song playing as we walk, a la the movie Closer. And p.s., if anyone can tell me why that movie is called Closer, I’d really appreciate it.
9) Hold You in my Arms, Ray LaMontagne. Perfect slow dance music.
10) Hallelujah, Jeff Buckley. More good stuff to listen to when you’re depressed.
11) Anna Begins, Counting Crows. Whenever I was at the popular dive bar in college, someone would play this on the juke box, as if they knew it was my favorite song. Hmmmmm.
12) Mothers Work, Kate Bush. I have never given birth, but this was the perfect song to accompany labor in the movie She’s Having a Baby. Once again, the late John Hughes knew his music. Guaranteed to make me bawl upon listening to it.
13) I Can’t Make You Love Me, Bonnie Raitt. Listen to this one if you have an unrequited love. Sobfest.
14) City of Angels, Gabriel Yared. If I were a professional figure skater, this is the music I would use for my long program. I’ve choreographed it in my head. (What? Doesn’t anyone else do that?)
15) No One is to Blame, Emile Millar for the movie Waitress. This is the remake of the Howard Jones’ classic, with brilliant lyrics that just make you ask “Can’t I catch a break?”