What I’m Listening To: August 2020


If July was the equivalent of finding divine messages in bottles amidst the tides of this pandemic then August has provided a treasure chest. It’s an eclectic treasure to be sure: shiny gems, fool’s gold, antiques, and more. You can blame TikTok for a good portion of my findings and obsessions this month because when you literally hear the same song over and over on an app it tends to become just a little catchy. I’m not imagining all of these songs will be my favorites beyond the month or even the year, but, for now, they’ve brought me joy and good times before I enter a “new normal” as I return to work and such.

Compared to July, there’s definitely more variety in terms of vocals, and we have a bit more diversity in terms of genre and sound as well. Not all of the music came from TikTok: my music is spread across my personal collection (iPod), Spotify, YouTube, and various other apps and devices. Some of the favorite artists and albums of July make reappearances here with new songs, but it’s my list, my rules.

With that in mind, let’s have a listen, shall we?

  • “Bang!” by AJR. Put quinoa in my fridge, still I’m not feelin’ grown.
  • “Do I Wanna Know?” by Arctic Monkeys. How many secrets can you keep?
  • “F2020” by Avenue Beat. Emotionally, I am lonely and anxious and mad.
  • “Sports” by Beach Bunny. If you shatter, I won’t let you fall apart.
  • “Better Off Without You” by Becky Hill featuring Shift K3Y. Now it’s time to start putting me first.
  • “Electric Love” by BØRNS. You make my heart beat like the rain.
  • “My Truck” by BRELAND featuring Sam Hunt. I be ridin’ through the city / young, rich, and I’m pretty.
  • “Lemons” by Brye. I’m legitimately tired of being walked all over.
  • “WAP” by Cardi B featuring Megan Thee Stallion. Pay my tuition just to kiss me…
  • “Heather” by Conan Gray. Why would you ever kiss me?
  • “Rules” by Doja Cat. That’s my ego that you stroking.
  • “Hate Me” by Ellie Goulding with Juice WRLD. You hate me because I don’t let you play no mind games.
  • “I See Red” by Everybody Loves an Outlaw. Did you know that you’re better off dead?
  • “Sweater Weather” by Gaullin and Julian Perretta. Both your hands in the holes of my sweater.
  • “All for Us” by Labyrinth and Zendaya. Dreamers are selfish when it all comes down to it.
  • “Burn” by Phillipa Soo from I’m burning the memories / Burning the letters that might have redeemed you.
  • “Girls in Bikinis” by Poppy. I see you in my dreams, slow motion movie scenes.
  • “Ride It” by Regard. Re-apply your lippy ‘cause it came off on the glass.
  • “Satisfied” by Renée Elise Goldsberry from Hamilton. I know my sister like I know my own mind / You will never find anyone as trusting or as kind.
  • “Roses (Imanbek Remix)” by SAINt JHN. She might get it popping, I might wife her for the winter.
  • “Lie” by Sasha Sloan. Say you’re lucky to love me like you used to.
  • “Ashes” by Stellar. Now you are the queen and I’m the pawn.
  • “august” by Taylor Swift. And then canceled my plans just in case you’d call.
  • “I Miss Having Sex But At Least I Don’t Wanna Die Anymore” by Waterparks. Cutting people off because I don’t trust exciting.
  • “Wait a Minute!” by WILLOW. I left my consciousness in the sixth dimension.
  • “Fvck Somebody” by The Wrecks. I just wanna love someone who’s not you.

As for singular tastes, I listened to quite a few of Beach Bunny’s songs; they’re the right mix of upbeat, downtempo, and introspective. And I’m still playing folklore on repeat. This month has passed by in a bit of blur—hard to believe it’s over, the summer is over, my new chapter is beginning—but at least I had some great music to pass the time. I’ve also started listening to lo-fi stations on YouTube while I’m working, which isn’t something I thought I would be into. With “life” beginning again and my favorite season on the horizon, we’ll just have to have our headphones at the ready for whatever is waiting just around the track change.

*As an aside: a fun game is to see how the song titles line up to create weird sentences/poems/writing prompts.