Pumpkin Spice Playlist: A Fall Playlist for 2022

The lure of the fall playlist and new music releases.

In my mind, and for other music fanatics, fall is like the September Issue of Vogue; it sets precedent for the remainder of the year, and the year to come. This year, people can look forward to new albums by Noah Kahan and Taylor Swift, and it’s almost like a re ignition of Back-to-the-Future in the music world with new resurfacings of Paramore, The 1975 and the Arctic Monkeys. 

Now, I’m sure most people create playlists every so often, either for specific occasions or if they have a collection of songs they want made. For me, however, my yearly fall playlists are something that I begin working on in the spring. Quite frankly, I might go a little too over-the-top with them, between scouting out music in March and then proceeding to change the title countless times. I figured, instead of gatekeeping what I consider the “pure genius” behind my playlists, it’s time to share how I execute the process. 

When I go to build it out, it typically evolves from an image. This playlist should be something you can imagine listening to while you’re hiking in the woods, while you’re walking to class, while you’re doing homework with a candle lit, and while making dinner. Versatile. From there, I’ll start with one or two songs that I already regularly listen to. Those favorites are as follows, and are found on every one of my fall playlists: 

“Barcelona” by George Ezra: I began listening to George Ezra in high school. His music flows beautifully and offers both spirited tones as well as smoother more relaxing rhythms. Right from the beginning of the song, “Barcelona” uses a quiet maraca and soft guitar sound to bring listeners a sense of warmth. No more than twenty seconds into the song, George Ezra shows off his smooth voice and by the time the chorus hits, listeners become accustomed to his deep resonance. “Barcelona” speaks of nostalgia for a person or place and the quiet acoustics make this a perfect fall tune. 

“Angela” by The Lumineers: From the fingerpicking guitar at the beginning, to the clear vocals at the chorus, “Angela,” is easily one of The Lumineers best songs. Every song on their album, “Cleopatra,” asks listeners to reflect on life choices and desires. “Angela” is told from the perspective of a lover watching Angela leave a small town, wondering if there really was more out there. Being from a small town with huge aspirations, this song has always spoken to me on a personal level, and inspired my six month stint in New York City. The key changes are hit perfectly throughout this song with the perfect amount of vocal fry added in the chorus. 

“Almost” by Hozier: A little more upbeat, “Almost (Sweet Music)”, by Hozier, immediately starts off with a heavy, but not distracting, baseline. With melodies stacked on top of each other, “Almost (Sweet Music)”  seems like it should not work out rhythmically. However each rhythmic overlap creates a beautiful orchestral feeling for listeners. Hozier pays tribute to the jazz era throughout his song leaving jazz lovers to pick up on references in each verse. 

“Darling” by flipturn: This song holds a very special place in my Spotify account. I first heard this song last fall when I had a homemade soup night with my friends. We were sitting around a small living room table, laughing and enjoying each other’s company when the song came on, and it was one of those moments that you realize is going to become a core memory. The song begins with a slow crescendo, the vocals slowly harmonizing and building to a climactic bass line and beat drop. The vocals offered by the band are similar to molasses, smooth enough for a calm melody but tangy enough to add extra auditory levels. 

Once those songs are on the playlist, I’ll either go to the Spotify “recommended” section, under the playlist, or I’ll look for more recommendations via TikTok, Instagram or by word-of-mouth through my friends. My favorite fall playlist that I’ve created has perfect amounts of the upbeat rhythm inspired by flipturn, and the contrasting slower melodies similar to George Ezra’s discography. The link is below:

Happy listening VRNT.

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