Playlist: 10 songs to calm a holiday frenzied soul

Few can describe the polarizing effect winter has on the moods of many people. For some, winter is a time of warmth, where time spent with family is paramount. A flight home to a warm living room, a cozy blanket and home cooked meals is routine for many students. For others, the cold weather can have a more chilling effect, where feelings of melancholy and introspection are more prominent.

There is also much to be said about the way a song can affect one's mood. Musicians have the uncanny ability of controlling our moods in ways we can’t explain. The power of music can help us focus on studying for finals, mend a broken heart or simply provide the soundtrack for an evening of mindless entertainment with close friends.

The State Press has carefully crafted a playlist to play during your holiday break, full of tunes that fit the ever-changing moods of winter. The song “Poison & Wine” by Nashville indie folk duo The Civil Wars portrays the contradicting emotions of the season better than most, with Joy Williams and John Paul White tenderly singing the phrase, “I don’t love you, but I always will.”

This playlist will cater to almost any feeling you may have over the holiday season. Need to get away from your boisterous family? Play “Holocene” and let Justin Vernon’s soothing vocals help you regain your sanity. Want a peaceful song to help you drift to sleep after a hearty holiday meal? Play William Fitzsimmon’s “Bird of Winter Prey” and the lush orchestration will have you dreaming in no time.

Perhaps you are the type of listener that focuses on the words of the songs rather than the overall sound. Let the lyrics of the songs chosen speak to you. Maybe you will relate to the poignant lyrics of Adele’s “Hiding My Heart” (“But like everything I’ve ever known / You disappear one day / So I will spend my whole life hiding my heart away”) or the clarity found in Bon Iver’s “Holocene” (“And at once, I knew I was not magnificent / High above the highway aisle / But I could see for miles, miles, miles”).

Music can be therapeutic. You’ve already had enough on your plate with the semester’s end; allow yourself to steal away from the holiday frenzy and relax. Whatever your plans for the holiday season are, remember to take a few moments to immerse yourself in a good song.


1. “Winter Song” by The Head and the Heart

2. “Bird of Winter Prey” by William Fitzsimmons

3. “Rocks” by Ryan Adams

4. “Hiding My Heart” by Adele

5. “Poison & Wine” by The Civil Wars

6. “Champagne Year” by St. Vincent

7. “Among Angels” by Kate Bush

8. “Soon, My Friend” by M83

9. “Holocene” by Bon Iver

10. “I Don't Want Love” by The Antlers


Listen to this playlist on Grooveshark at


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