It has been tough to pick twelve tracks which represent my favourite ‘Sounds of 2020‘, but these are my best attempt to do so. With a neurological condition that suppresses my immune system, like many, I have been shielding for most of the year. It has meant that the radio, and in particular, music has taken on an even greater importance in my life. I don’t know what the state of my mood would be without them.
I’m going to include YouTube videos for each of the twelve tracks, plus a YouTube and Spotify playlist. Where possible I will link directly to sites where you can support the artists themselves – never more important in the times in which we find ourselves!
I’ve never really been an active Spotify user, so it doesn’t really ‘unwrap’ much about my 2020 listening habits. as in previous years, my main debt is to the new music, public service mission of BBC Radio, for helping to signpost my discoveries during the year – in particular, Phil Taggart (I will miss his Sunday evening show on BBC Radio 1); Janice Long (on BBC Radio Wales); Elizabeth Alker, Sara Mohr-Pietsch, Hannah Peel, Verity Sharp and Jennifer Lucy Allan (with Unclassified, Night Tracks and Late Junction on BBC Radio 3), plus Don Letts and many more across the schedule on BBC Radio 6 Music – and of course, Annie Nightingale on BBC Radio 1. “Thank You” to each of you!
Now for the twelve:
For Those I Love – “I Have a Love”
The Reads – “Prettiest Scars”
Erland Cooper (feat. Kathryn Joseph, Kevin Cormack, John Burnside, Alex Kozobolis) – “Noup Head”
Polyhymns – “Down With The Kids”
Arlo Parks – “Black Dog”
El Goodo – “Fi’n Flin”
Working Men’s Club – “Valleys”
Lizzie Reid – “Seamless”
Kelly Lee Owens – “Arpeggi”
Real Lies – “I Wander”
Holly Childs & Gediminas Žygus – “Hydrangea’s Just the Password Though, Right?”
Khruangbin – “Time (You and I)”
Not a definitive twelve, but a twelve that represent what I’ve been listening to.
Now for those twelve tracks in a single playlist – first Spotify, and then YouTube.
I’ve been enjoying discovering even more from other people’s end of year choices too – although I’m still unsure what Spotify’s classification of my listening as “Seattle indie” means – or has anything to do with remotely resembling my listening – unless somebody else has been jumping onto my account and bursting my ‘bubble’ while I’ve had something else going into my ears.