Listening on Repeat: A Playlist

I didn’t used to think of myself as a person who listened to the same song over and over again in emotionally trying times. A good look through my actual listening habits forced me to re-evaluate that image of myself, because…I actually do that a lot. My usual music habit is still to put my entire playlist on Shuffle and skip over anything that doesn’t suit my mood, but when my mind is sore and my heart ailing, it’s time for something that feels right, 15 or 20 times. Lately it’s Zard’s version of what is better known as Dragonball GT’s theme song by Field of View, but over the years, it’s been many, many different things.

It’s emotional stimming.

And the list of my stim-songs has a lot in common, enough to hold together thematically as a playlist. So here it is, for your enjoyment and to see if someone can tell me what, exactly, unites all of these pieces in musical terms. And here it is on YouTube.


  1. Zard – Dan Dan Kokoro Hikareteku
  2. Veronicas – 4Ever
  3. Howl and J – Perhaps Love
  4. Keane – Somewhere Only We Know
  5. The Chainsmokers ft. Halsey – Closer
  6. Lenka – Dangerous and Sweet
  7. Ingrid Michaelson – The Way I Am
  8. Tristan Prettyman – Love Love Love
  9. Cori Yarckin – Together We’ll Make a Promise
  10. Depeche Mode – Enjoy the Silence
  11. Dani Marcus – Every Side of Me
  12. Saybia – It’s OK Love
  13. Leigh Nash – Ocean Size Love
  14. Vanessa Carleton – A Thousand Miles
  15. The Chainsmokers – Paris
  16. Bella Morte – Ghost Land
  17. VNV Nation – Illusion
  18. Fiona Apple – Extraordinary Machine
  19. Taylor Swift – Cold as You
  20. Keane – Your Eyes Open
  21. Irán Castillo – Girando en el tiempo
  22. Belanova – Dulce fantasía
  23. Kacey Musgraves – Follow your Arrow
  24. Sabrina Carpenter – The Middle of Starting Over
An album-cover-style image of singer Lenka, with her hands over her mouth. She is wearing yellow nail polish, black eyeliner, and long brown hair. Above her, her name in a trademark font appears, and the whole is superimposed on a snippet of lyrics from her song
If you’re not already gushing over Lenka, it’s time to start.
Listening on Repeat: A Playlist

2 thoughts on “Listening on Repeat: A Playlist

  1. 1

    The problem I have listening to songs in repetition in emotionally trying times is that the songs thereafter become “connected” to that trauma…and when I try to move on, I can’t listen to those songs again. 🙁

    As far as connections go, a lot of these songs have lyrical themes that deal with broken relationships and starting over. I’d be curious if there are any other subtle themes uniting the songs…there might be something I haven’t noticed.

    1. 1.1

      I know that feeling well. I often have to be quite sparing with former favorites when something like that happens, or the association will return. It takes a long time for such unwelcome connections to fade.

      That’s the thing–the thematic relationship is definitely there, but I think the music I obsess over also has musical qualities in common. Certain rhythm patterns, or something. I lack the vocabulary required to really describe what I’m thinking.

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