All I’ve Done This Summer is: make playlists

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With summer has come a very short attention span. I’m not sure what it is, but I’ve found it pretty difficult to settle into full albums rather than hopping from song to song. Hence trying my hand at the art of playlist making.

The inspiration to start mainly came from the Beggars Promotions weekly playlists, with a little bank of new music: not too long, not too short- just a snippet of what was about. Listening to them, I got to get to know more new music than I would have done had I been dedicating time to full albums. My flitting attention span has meant I’ve been content with artist hopping on Spotify, and just having a couple of songs per artist in each playlist. I did have hopes of doing a playlist per week of the new music I’m listening to, but sadly I haven’t been quite so structured.

It would be great to say that I’ve become a connoisseur of playlist making: making ones that flow seamlessly from track to track, for ease of listening. In reality, I’m pretty haphazard and my playlists are clumsily put together. They’re all loosely framed around genres or themes – as well as having the mandatory festivals-I’m-attending playlists – but apart from that, anything goes. I find it best to put them on shuffle, enjoy and get on with it.

Playlist names are always a challenge, though. I’ve gotten into the habit of pinching song lyrics that feature in them as names- so I’ve ended up with ‘Peanut Butter Vibes’ (courtesy of Glass Animals – ‘Gooey’), ‘Vit C’ (a nod to Clean Cut Kid), among others. Hopefully I will learn the art of effortlessly cool and clever playlist names at some point, along with concentrating on making beautifully flowing playlists.

There is something of a drawback to playlist making, though. It kind of removes the organic-ness of music and takes tracks out of the context of their roots, especially in comparison to vinyl’s necessity for you to listen to the whole album. But it does have its positives, which is why I’ve had fun doing it. I’ve been able to uncover quite a lot of new music with great ease, whilst at the same time rekindling older music that fits into what I’m listening to now.

I’m not going to say I’ve convinced myself that my playlisting has been a productive element of my summer- I probably should have been doing other things too. But; I’ve discovered new music, named a playlist after peanut butter, and have decent banks of music to listen to everyday.

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Third year English student, Records Editor, list maker and lover of Kinder Buenos.

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