Each week for the summer, our fabulous counselors will be contributing to a Spotify playlist with songs that they love and want to share with you – and that apply to the week’s theme! And each week, we will publish some of their thoughts about why they chose their songs.
Here’s the playlist to Week 1: Light Up the World
And here are our counselors!
come out and play (by billie Eilish): This song was performed at Club 2019’s Sunday Vespers (a quiet evening program put on completely by Club) and truly lit up the space! They performed it with such enthusiasm and love that it was a true offering to everyone listening. The song itself always gives me that little push to get out of bed and go do something, even if that something is just texting a friend or going for a walk.
Fire and the Flood (Vance Joy), This song reminds me of following other peoples’ light. Especially at camp I think we recognize when someone is putting out a good vibe or carrying with them a light of positivity or wisdom. Lighting up your world can mean bringing another persons flame into it!
Sanctuary (Nashville Cast)
Long As I Can See The Light (Creedence Clearwater Revival)
Superbloom (by Misterwives): I chose this song because the piano and horns give me so much energy, and because there’s a great metaphor woven throughout the song (and at some points, more tangibly spelled out) of a superbloom of flowers rising out of the desert, improbable growth coming out of the midst of apparent nothingness. Even when times seem difficult (whether on a personal or societal level, or both), we can “superbloom” and bring beauty and light out of darkness and challenge.
Feeling Alive (by Earl St. Clair): This song radiates a positive outlook on life. It’s a love song, but it’s also just about what the title says: feeling absolutely, completely, incredibly alive! I love the way the song adjusts at different points (the sound speeding up and filling out at the chorus and incorporating call-and-response during the bridge) but maintains that undeniable positivity. The song also speaks to the importance of focusing on your own joy when the world seems bleak.
Never Seen the Rain (Tones & I) – just my #1 fave song right now, and I’d love to see it on the playlist 🙂
Don’t Carry It All (The Decemberists): This song takes me back to one summer, sitting in the barn on the 4th of July, when a Lanakila Band took the stage and blew us all away with their rendition. It’s one of those moments that just brings me peace – being at camp, of course, and also just the message of the song reminded me of this theme in the sense of lightening the load off of ourselves. I know it’s not an exact match, but it’s just what I thought about 🙂
Express Yourself (by Labrinth). I love this song, it always reminds me that no matter what I do, to make it authentically me! (It’s also just really fun to dance around to!)
“Animal Spirits” (by Vulfpeck): Light Up the World! I love this song and am excited to share it with you all. To me, it perfectly captures some amazing musicians having a great time and finding a middle ground between exuberant improvisation and stunning technicality on their respective instruments. That sense of controlled chaos reminds me a lot of camp! It lifts my mood whenever I hear it and I hope you like it too.
Wherever is Your Heart (by Brandi Carlile)
Closer to Fine (by The Indigo Girls): Last summer, the Aloha Unit Heads performed this song during Night Lights. I love the song’s message, and whenever I hear it I think of standing in Father Guilick’s Ravine looking out at the Aloha 2019 community.
“Homesick” (by Lawrence): The song’s first line is about a “bright, fluorescent light” shining down on the speaker, preventing him from being able to sleep. This is a song about a homesick guy who has lost the familiarity and comforts of home — something all campers and counselors who’ve experienced Week 1 of camp can probably relate to. But the song’s upbeat blues piano lick (very Professor Longhair-eqsue) reminds us that even when we’re homesick, there’s all kinds of fun to be had and new experiences to open ourselves up to.
When The Night Feels My Song, (by Bedouin Soundclash): Whenever I hear this song it instantly puts a smile on my face. Although it hasn’t been sung at camp, the lyrics make me think of all the incredible music we get to hear and be a part of at camp. The chorus goes “When the night feels my song, I’ll be home” and this always reminds me about how whenever I hear a camp song I feel at home.
Quarter Chicken Dark (by Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, Chris Thile, Yo-Yo Ma): An amazing bassist, a virtuosic fiddler, the best cellist in the world, and the best mandolin player in the world walk into a studio and make jaw-dropping bluegrass. I especially love the phrase beginning at 3:19.
When the Sun Goes Down, from the In The Heights musical soundtrack (by Lin-Manuel Miranda): I know it sounds strange, but outside songbooks songs, there isn’t any song I listen to that makes me think of camp more. At this point in the musical, two young lovers are preparing to part as one goes off to college and one stays in their neighborhood. The music and lyrics are so sad, so hopeful, and so loving: “Let me take this moment just to say/That you’re gonna change the world someday/and I’ll think of you every night and day.” As a counselor I always feel I’m saying goodbye to kids, now Lanakilans, who are going to go do amazing things with their year and with their lives. When I was a camper, I spent my years thinking about Lanakila nonstop and trying to hold onto all the spirit I could. This song makes me smile, dance, and sometimes cry whenever I hear it – it tells me that we can carry the love of the people and places we care about with us until we see them again. I like to think of 1,000 different Lanakilans all over the world, each with a little bit of that Lanakila magic in their hearts, each hopeful and excited for the next time we’re all together.
Who I Am (by Jessica Andrews): We have a song in the Aloha song book (Camp Aloha’s Daughters) that is written to the tune of this song!
Have It All (by Jason Mraz)