Happy Holi-blaze: A playlist for 4/20

Allow us to provide some musically genius and thought-provoking tunes for your 4/20. (Carlos Gracia/Flickr Creative Commons)

For some, April 20 is not merely the 31st day of spring. It’s a celebration of pleasure, enjoyment and curiosity. And weed.

Derived from Deadhead slang, 4/20 has become a stoner’s holiday. One of the activities smokers will say is enhanced by the plant is listening to music. Allow us to provide some musically genius and thought-provoking tunes for your 4/20.

“Style” by Ryan Adams

Adams’ full-album cover of Taylor Swift’s “1989” has its hits and misses but his cover of “Style” turns Swift’s bubbly, shiny production into a smoky bar room jam, while keeping the pop sensibility.

“Watching Movies” by Mac Miller

Mac Miller’s use of sampling on this song creates something between a horror movie soundtrack and absolute banger. Not many people can take an unsettling, echoing guitar and make it go hard.

“Don’t Don’t Do It!” by N.E.R.D. featuring Kendrick Lamar

Pharrell’s juxtaposition of elevator music and bouncy guitars with lyrics about police discrimination and brutality against Black Americans is enough to make you pause and contemplate what exactly you’re supposed to be feeling while listening to this song.

“Any Colour You Like” by Pink Floyd

The quintessentially 1970s style of synth, pulsing beat and phaser effects on the guitar make this instrumental a multi-layered classic.

“In the Company of Wolves” by Incubus

This seven-and-a-half minute jam is split into two distinct parts: the calm, breezy first half and the mysterious-sounding, bass-driven second half backed by frontman Brandon Boyd’s whispering of it being “the longest night of my life.”

“Drew Barrymore” by SZA

SZA’s “Ctrl” is so personal it reads like a diary. The singer exposes her insecurities in full view on this song: “Sorry I just need to see you/I’m sorry I’m so clingy I don’t mean to be a lot,” she sings.

“911/Mr. Lonely” by Tyler, the Creator

The rapper’s musings on loneliness can prove painfully relatable as he looks inward and admits his own feelings of isolation. “Purchase some things until I’m annoyed/These items is fillin’ the void/Been fillin’ it for so long/I don’t even know if it’s shit I enjoy.”

“King Kunta” by Kendrick Lamar

Kendrick’s music is full of social commentary; “King Kunta” is just one example. Over a 70s funk bassline, Lamar takes the fictional slave Kunta Kinte and christens him a king, exemplifying his duality as a successful Black man in America.

“Ghost Town” by The Specials

“Ghost Town” takes The Specials’ brand of ska and adds in eerie noises reminiscent of the ghosts from Mario to represent how violence among young concertgoers caused music clubs to shut down in the U.K.

“Good Vibrations” by The Beach Boys

At the time “Good Vibrations” was released, it was quite unlike any other pop song on the radio. Its use of the Theremin, shifting moods and structure makes it a unique and intriguing pop song to this day.

“Where is My Mind?” by The Pixies

There’s no metaphor disguised in these lyrics; the song was written about frontman Black Francis’ experience being chased by a fish while scuba diving. Its on-the-edge-of-dissonant melody and almost nonsensical lyrics have made it an indie rock classic.


Schae Beaudoin is the life editor for The Daily Campus. She can be reached by email at schae.beaudoin@uconn.edu.