Welcome to the first version of
the Survival Playlist
– a sister project to Empty Room
What is it?
While developing Empty Room I became more and more interested in the songs or music that we use to get us through difficult times. Music has been central to my life and my art and I wanted to explore other people’s relationship to music in their lives.
The Survival Playlist is a playlist made up of submissions from audiences of Empty Room as well as anyone around the world who gets in touch, either through email, Facebook or Twitter.
Your submission can be a single song, several songs, an album, a concert, a band etc.
Please feel free to get in touch through any of the above. And if you feel free to share, let me know how this music relates to a specific time in your life, if this song or piece of music is uplifting, cathartic, nostalgic or anything else for you. I will never share any information you consider private.
You can also listen to all this wonderful music through the Survival Playlist on my YouTube channel
Post on Twitter or Facebook with the handle #SurvivalPlaylist and tag me in with @momims1 (Twitter) or @miriamgouldartist (Facebook)
The Survival Playlist
My Heart Will Go On – Postmodern Jukebox submitted by Emily Jane Kerr
Loveless (album) – My Bloody Valentine submitted by Peyee Chen
Take My Hand – Clare Cordell submitted by Emily Jane Kerr
The Civil Wars submitted by Lizzie Franks
Lucky Man – The Verve/Richard Ashcroft submitted by Lee Murray
Streets of Philadelphia – Bruce Springsteen submitted by Lot Grundy
That’s Amore – Dean Martin submitted by Lee Murray
Don’t Touch My Hair – Solange submitted by Peyee Chen
Whole Damn Year – Mary J. Blige submitted by Peyee Chen
Jazz Man – Carole King submitted by Dan Egglington
Joan Baez – Diamonds and Rust (acoustic)
I forgot where we were – Ben Howard
Small Things – Ben Howard
“when I want to wallow it reminds me of how mundane sadness is”
Gonna Make you a star – David Essex
“when I want to feel better, reminds me of my lovely mum”
Let it Be – Beatles
“For Jonny <3”
Paper Bag – Fiona Apple
“Pretty much anything from her album ‘The Idler, The Wheel’, because her pain calms my pain”
Dance me to the end of love – Leonard Cohen
“reminds me of the love of my life, although we are no longer physically – we always will be in spiritual reality”
Us – Regina Spektor
“For friendships I’ve had more than half my life (I will have for the rest of my life)”
Bach’s cello suite, Minuet in G major
“This piece reminds me of my friends who always joyful, encouraging and loving. I lost her once after a big fight during both of us in depression but then she came back to me (thank god).”
Bach’s cello suite, prelude in G major
“I was practicing it when my boyfriend came to visit me for the first time. l always thought I was very bad at playing this wonderful piece, but he was amazed and transformed by it. Later it was also him who encouraged me to take the grade 8 test even when I found I practiced the wrong version one day before the test. And I made it and passed with distinction in the end. Without him I could have given up. So this piece reminds me of many things like keeping calm, courage, be yourself when playing the music etc.”
Begin the Beguine – sung by Richard Tauber
“My stepfather sent this 78 recording to my mother during WWII from South Africa. It was maybe his only heartfelt communication. They married years later. But she always loved it. I listened as a child and after she died I learnt to play and sing it so I could sing to her even though she was dead. I love it because of its erotic promise and its completely self-contained prayer to the power of music, its admission to the pain of lost opportunity and lost love – and its complete surrender to reignited emotional power. It’s Cole Porter. It’s fun. It’s clean and it’s truly cathartic.”
Foggy Mountain Breakdown (Earl Scrugs)
“…is a super fast and joyful bluegrass number that my best friends would play when he was really mashed because it’s very fast and complex so he could gage whether he was still in command of his senses if he could still play it…After he died I would play it round and round in a loop (it never ends, only gets faster) and remember him at his most excited, loving life.
*Plus, for all its exuberance, that E minor still hits me in the heart every time it comes round.”
a) Pink Floyd – Wish you were here
b) The Dear Hunter – Waves
c) Dave Matthew’s Band – Crash (Into Me)
a) When missing dead dad
d) Tim Minchin – I’m there
d) reflecting on childlessness, cathartic
This may be ridiculous but my song is ‘Hold On’ by Wilson Phillips, which came on the radio when I was 16 and suicidal. It stopped me.
Days like this – Van Morrison
“there are going to be some shitty days but there are going to be some great ones. Keeps me pushing on!
This is a beautiful idea, thank you.”
Paul Grady – Arthur McBride
Tom Waits – Innocent when you Dream
Elisabeth Cotton – Freight train
And Diamonds on the souls of her shoes.
“All of these songs helped me through my hardest, most difficult time. Sorry I could not pick one.”
“Loved, loved, loved the show.”
1. Bruce Hornsby – the Way it is
Reason: it was playing when I found out my dad was dying
2. Badly Drawn boy – Pissing in the wind
Reason: when I feel sad
3. Beautiful South – Perfect Ten
Reason: Lifts my spirits when I want to die
I wouldn’t be me if there wasn’t a list.
* Sometimes when I feel horrible I can’t listen to music at all until I feel a bit better – the emotion runs too high
* I shall send a piece of music as I can’t find it right now!!! It’s pianoy though xxx
“Thank you for the lovely performance, loved every bit of it and such a great idea.”
Vecherai Rado (it’s a Bulgarian folklore song so there are loads of diff people singing it but I like Desislava Dobreva’s version) ❤
Christina Aguilera – Fighter
‘Odal’ by Wardruna
“This song is very special to me as wherever I am I can close my eyes and it will me home to my Norway. The trees, mountains, sea and family and friends whom I miss very much every day.
Thank you so so much!”
My song is a Christopher Robin Lullaby – so probably can’t be added! But thank you for such a heartfelt, honest, deeply moving yet light and careful show. The best theatre I have seen this year. Thank you.
Shake it out by Florence and the Machine
“I’d listen to it before every exam at university and jump around my room to shake away the anxiety.”
All my Loving by The Beatles.
“My mother (a huge fan in the day) used to sing to me as a lullaby – it is still my comforter.”
Jackrabbits by Joanna Newsom
“for a good wallow/to remember”
Eventually by Tame Impala
“when my parents split up, I knew it was for the best and this song helped me think it would be OK in the end”
Repent Walpurgis by Procul Harum
“suggested by my younger brother after my older brother’s death and has not gone away”
Impossible Soul by Sufjan Stevens
“When I was 6, my parents separated and my mother moved to Spain. 3 months later me and my siblings followed her. My father, who stayed behing in Chile, gave us a CD before we left. The CD contained music written by artists who had been exiled during the dictatorship of the 70s and 80s, which both my parents lived through.
The song ‘Vuelvo‘ by Inti Illimani was in that CD. When the dictatorship ended, the band jumped on a plane to Chile and as they got off the plane they took out their instruments and played this new song to the giant crows that had gathered to receive them. ‘Vuelvo’ means ‘I return’ in Spanish. I have yet to see Chile again.
Coral Para mi Pequeño y Lejano Pueblo by Dino Saluzzi
I Can’t Stop Loving You by Ray Charles
Sunrise by Winterbourne
“makes me feel super happy and grateful for everything around me and brings me back to the fact that all you need is nature, life and love!!
Disarm by Smashing Pumpkins
“makes me wallow and reminisce”
You’re Not Alone by Olive
“New Year’s Eve a few years ago. Maybe being a bit of a 90s child (born in ’85), feel like this song resonates. I met a lot of new friends that nights. It all felt connected to my future. The song feels like future and past”
Happy Nation by Ace of Base
“love the lyrics to this song – connection of all humanity together!”
Moon Egg by Yama Warashi
Lonely Bird by Bulgarian Voices and Huun Huur Tu
Aht Uh Mi Hed by Shuggie Otis
Good Luck by Basement Jaxx ft. Lisa Kekaula
I Will Fix You by Coldplay
I Wish I Knew How it Would Feel to be Free by Nina Simone
How Can You Mend a Broken Heart by Al Green
Follow or post on Twitter with #SurvivalPlaylist