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There are certain songs that seem perfectly suited for stormy skies and drizzly days.
In some cases, this can be attributed to sentimental lyrics, while in others, it’s more about an incessant rhythmic figure or the presence of an instrument with a particularly delicate sound. In some cases, music can just feel sad…
Whatever the reason, it’s as though you simply have to sit back and hit play to feel the raindrops dance across your skin. What can we say, some songs just put you in a mood.
In the latest episode of our podcast Themes and Variation, I’m joined by my frequent co-host, Mahea Lee and songwriter, producer, and educator, Euan Gray. This time around, we’re discussing “Rainy Day Songs.”
From tracks that evoke torrential downpours to melodies reminiscent of a light mist, what would you put on your Rainy Day playlist?
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Want to dig a bit deeper? Check out the companion course on Soundfly.
If you’re enjoying this episode, and you’d like to learn more about some of the musical topics we touched on, you can also check out Soundfly’s free companion course for songwriting prompts and additional resources. From scale modes to melody-writing and even audio production tips and tricks, we’ve curated some extra resources for listeners who want to go the extra creative mile and put stuff from the episode into action.
Episode 22 Highlights
1. Carter on James Blake’s voice influencing his production.
Carter: “And I think he’s one of my favorite artists blending very artistic production ideas, and I think why he’s able to do that is because he’s producing and writing for his own voice. He knows what his own limitations are gonna be, he knows how to frame the artist’s voice, which is also himself, better than anyone else on the planet. I think if you work really closely with a singer you can get to that, but when you’re one and the same that’s, there’s something so beautiful about that, where you’re able to like, sink in and see maybe down the road ‘this is where I can go with this track.'”
2. Paul Simon couldn’t believe “Still Crazy After All These Years” wasn’t already a common phrase.
Euan: “I read that Paul Simon discovered this title getting into the shower one day, it just came to him. He couldn’t believe that it wasn’t already a common phrase, like it just sounds like something people have said for hundreds of years you know? ‘You what they say, still crazy after all these years!’ But he couldn’t believe he actually made it up and he said it really related to how he was feeling at that time, but it wasn’t something he was proud of.”
3. Mahea on learning Chopin’s Preludes as poetry.
Mahea: “I think Chopin’s Preludes and Nocturnes are really great because they are deceptively simple. Like learning the actual notes and stuff, it’s not that they’re easy, because they’re not, I spent months with this I think before I felt good about how I played it. But like, being able to take those notes on a page and turn them into something expressive and beautiful like in this performance, find the space and breathe into it, in a way that is connected. This isn’t just notes, his music allows for that in a way that some other classical music really doesn’t, like Chopin and Debussy are probably my two favorite classical composers for that reason. It’s like poetry, but in the form of notes.”
Join Our Collaborative Playlist
Just like we do every time we launch a new episode, we’ve created a collaborative Spotify playlist in order to share every song mentioned in this episode and explore many others that fit the theme. We want to hear your favorite rainy day songs, so feel free to add them to the playlist below.
Go ahead and add your selected songs to the playlist!
We’ll see you in a couple weeks with a new theme, new guests, and some new songs to break down. If you have any comments, questions, or theme suggestions, drops us a line at [email protected]!
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