Honestly, it’s a little hard to believe that one year ago, on a slight whim, I started this ongoing column based on my previous YouTube videos. While the format and purpose behind “What I’m Listening To” has mostly remained the same, the imposition of the rules and the addition of my little predictions has kept it interesting (for me). It’s definitely made it easier to track my music habits on a monthly and then yearly basis, and share them as well.
Last June, I only had fourteen tracks total as I was still finding my footing – and what could count as a favorite? Now, we have our usual 20, full of variety and the difficulty in narrowing it down doesn’t get any easier. Every month, as I encounter songs I enjoy, I add them to my ‘liked’ songs on Spotify and then, at the end of the month, I figure out which songs could qualify as favorites. Sometimes there’s overlap with the end of the previous month in terms of timeframe, but, generally, the longer I have to listen to a song the more likely it is to end up on this list. This month I had to choose from about 40 liked songs and a handful of albums on rotation, and narrow it down.
Thankfully, the rules help: no more than 20 songs per month, no more than 1 song per artist (not counting features), and no more than 3 songs per compilation album. At the end of the year, only songs from each of these monthly lists will be eligible for the Best Of list. My music, as always, is culminated from Spotify, recommendations from friends, other music platforms (such as YouTube), and devotion to some of my favorite artists and the content they put out.
So, let’s see what made the cut for June…
- “Teenage Dirtbag” by Amy Shark ~ I’ve got two tickets to Iron Maiden, baby / Come with me Friday, don’t say maybe
- “Lost Cause” by Billie Eilish ~ Thought you would’ve grown eventually, but you proved me wrong
- “u love u” by blackbear feat. Tate McRae ~ You’re selfish, selfish, how do you love? / Too much, too much, never enough
- “Welcome to the Internet” by Bo Burnham ~ Start a rumor, buy a broom / Or send a death threat to a boomer / Or DM a girl and groom her / Do a Zoom or find a tumor
- “Frankenstein” by Claire Rosinkranz ~ Oh, so loyal, makes me feel spoiled
- “Sorry” by Deb Never ~ Fucked up black out drunk at another party
- “For Island Fires and Family” by Dermot Kennedy ~ But she’s bringin’ the moon and stars to me
- “flowers & sex” by EMELINE feat. smle ~ Lilies and lilacs, will you tend to me at night?
- “gold fronts” by Fousheé feat. Lil Wayne ~ I got plans and they’re all piled up (ooh, yeah)
- “paranoia party” by Frances Forever ~ And this couch smells of lovin’ and dyin’ and Bud Light
- “Grow into Love” by Half Moon Run ~ Oh we both come and go as we please
- “Favorite Place” by Humbear ~ Spend the sunshine thinking of you
- “Bussdown” by Jorja Smith feat. Shaybo ~ Every word you say, I just believe, so call me Miss Naïve
- “Dating My Dad” by K. Flay feat Travis Barker ~ And every step you take, every friend you see / I’m feeling like the thought police, ah
- “QUEEN BEE” by Lauren Sanderson ~ You taste like honey when you kiss me
- “enough for you” by Olivia Rodrigo ~ ‘Cause someday I’ll be everything to somebody else
- “SUPERDUPER” by Shelby Taylor ~ He says, “I know you’re angry and that’s why you’re lashing out. Women only go on Tinder in a sexual drought but then they only go for guys who are 8’s and 9’s and 10’s. And I hate to break this to you but you’re like a 4 at best.” / I’m at least a 5 and I live by that. I live by that.
- “ghosts!” by Silver Sphere ~ Because I’m trying to clear / Out every memory of us
- “That’s When” by Taylor Swift feat. Keith Urban ~ And that’s when I’ll be waitin’ at the front gate
- “Chasing Amy” by TeaMarr ~ When you call me babe and say you’re mine / I’ll simmer down and realize / That we don’t really have to hide behind these white lies / And fake disguise / But only if you’re sure right / I need you to be sure
I was surprised to include more than one comedy track (in a single month), but Bo Burnham’s Inside has been on repeat on both my Spotify and Netflix and Shelby Taylor’s song is so relatable. A few of my favorite artists continue their reigns on the WILT chart with some returning and new musicians as well. I can’t say that my music taste has really changed over the last year of keeping track, but I can say it has made my appetite for music voracious. I’m always on the search for something new and exciting, personal and relatable, danceable and emotional. If music was something I enjoyed prior, it has become a genuine passion of mine.
What’s on the horizon for July? Billie Eilish will be releasing her new album at the end of the month so I expect another single. Music with slow, cool beats or songs in languages other than English. Maybe more from Australia or New Zealand. Maybe we’ll find a new film score or soundtrack to obsess over. It’s hard to say, but I know the musical hoard will grow. And that’s exciting.
Until then, you can find the currently complete What I’m Listening To 2021 playlist here.