During this time of isolation, the best thing to have right now is some good music. As we’re trying to find hobbies or activities to fill our time, I’ve made a playlist to ease the pain of quarantine and brighten the day just a little. It features a variety of artists from the unique style of Frank Ocean to the soulful sound of Snoh Aalegra to the sensational vibes that is Tame Impala.
Nights - Frank Ocean
This two-part melodic track speaks for itself. Frank Ocean is one of the most intriguing artists to date with his ability to create music that we won’t know whether we should cry to or enjoy a summer day with. It’s very difficult to explain or comprehend the versatility of the young artist, but his ability to switch from an upbeat groove to psychedelic slow ballad then soft spoken outro is undeniably amazing.
Earfquake - Tyler the Creator
As a fan who has listened to Tyler since high school, his music has definitely been something out of the ordinary but oddly satisfying. This entire album has shown his transitional growth as an artist and trying out different things, showing that he doesn’t just cause ruckus. Tyler is truly a lover not a fighter and showcases his wide range of style and juxtaposition of energies from absolutely insane to serene.
Breathe Deeper - Tame Impala
Nearly everything Tame Impala touches is gold. I still find it unbelievable that Tame Impala is a one-man band, especially with stellar production and range of vocals. Each song is like a ride and if I could’ve added the entire “The Slow Rush” album, I would’ve.
Passionfruit - Drake
Judging off production alone, Passionfruit is such a vibe. The beat could be put on loop and played at a model show. Drake’s low vocals only compliment the tone of the song. Nothing much has to be said about this track or Drake’s talent to create music we didn’t even think of.
Break from Toronto - Partynextdoor
One of the best songs by Party. I stumbled upon Partynextdoor circa 2014 and was caught by his unique sound. He samples Miguel’s track “Girl with The Tattoo” and absolutely creates a relaxed vibe with the hook alone. The Toronto artist has shown such a different style of music that it broadens the genres of music just a little more.
Stay Flo - Solange
Solange, sister of Beyonce, makes amazing music, let’s not let that fact flop. Solange has dropped not one but two impeccable albums since 2018, which honestly came out of left field. Solange is defying the categories of Pop and Stay Flo is a perfect example of her genius creation of music.
Paranoid - Kanye West
Paranoid is classic by the Chicago artist who has changed the game and himself immensely over the years. Each album shows Kanye’s progression and I’d like to believe that ‘808s and Heartbreak’ was the beginning of his transition. As an artist, Kanye is one of the greatest, but production-wise he is well gifted to possibly be the best of our time and this song and album prove that.
Go 2.0 - Alex Da Kid (feat. Jorja Smith, H.E.R. & Rapsody)
The collaboration of some of my favorite female artists makes this song one of the most enjoyable songs to date for me. For those of you that don’t know, Alex Da Kid is a British Producer/Songwriter. Getting these three lovely ladies to unite on a track was just heavenly.
At the beginning we start with the soulful chorus by H.E.R. to Rapsody’s strong flow and ends out on the soulful blessing that is Jorja Smith.
Flight 99 - Masego, Ta-ku & matt mcwaters
This song can be played on a loop for me. Masego has continued to prove he is much more than an artist with his ability to create vibes never thought of before, to this extent at least. Masego’s vocals combined with a mixture of relaxed tones and light hip-hop beats makes this song ahead of its time.
Time - Boogie (feat. Snoh Aalegra)
Whether at the beach or indoors, this song just hits different. Boogie raps so calmly over the beat and is matched with Snoh. The Compton rapper shows a different side of him, channeling more R&B soulful vibes and less ruggedness.
Consideration - Rihanna (feat. SZA)
A TEAM OF WONDER WOMEN. Rihanna’s ANTI is still one of my favorite albums to date and it kicks off with this song! Teaming up with SZA, the two just create a rare song fantasy of both strength and positivity.
COFFEE BEAN - Travis Scott
This song is such a different vibe from the rest of Travis Scott’s upbeat Astroworld album. Coffee Bean slows down the hype on the album and brings a sense of reflection from the artist. For a moment, we see a different and softer side of the Houston rapper.
Orange Pineapple - Larry June
If you like smooth West Coast hip-hop like Dom Kennedy, Larry June is right up your alley. Not only does he have bars for days, but the Bay Area Rapper eloquently delivers on these modern-funk sort of melodies.
Slide - YG (feat. H.E.R.)
Sticking to the West Coast vibes, the Compton-raised rapper YG, usually known for his upbeat sounds to get you ready for summer, slows it down ever so slightly.
I Want You Around Remix (feat. 6LACK) - Snoh Aalegra
If you hadn’t noticed yet, the playlist features a lot of Snoh Aalegra. But once listening to her voice, you’d understand. Her soothing soulful vocals just take over every song, and the addition of a verse by 6LACK makes it that much more enjoyable.
Ryd - Steve Lacy
Initially Steve Lacy was prominently recognized for his talented producing skills within the group The Internet. However, he’s now emerged to make a name for himself through his dreamy, funky talents taking all of his listeners on a “Ryd.”
B.S. (feat. H.E.R.) - Jhene Aiko
For years, Jhene has soothed our souls with her lovely vocals while also triggering our reactions to toxic situations enabling us to take the next step forward. The song B.S. just showcases how she’s able to talk us out of any past situations and refocusing on ourselves. Incredible.
Lil Thing - Knox Fortune
Some of you may have never heard of Knox Fortune, but yet another prominent name in the production world, revealing that he can do more than make amazing beats. Lil Thing has been out for awhile, but it shocks me how many people have never heard it before to this day. It’s the perfect song to vibe to while you ignore the fact that we’re in quarantine.
This article was written by Tali Letoi