Brittany Howard, Flaural, girl in red: A Wrap Up Of 2019’s Waking Life Tunes

Olivia Rose

Another trip around the sun, another 365 days measured out in song: as always, one could do worse than that. Yes, a lot of music happened, and in that way it was a musical year like most musical years: surprises, triumphs, disappointments, Autotune, etc. It's all pretty impossible to make sense of in this space, but the numbers are these: 

  • 11 Waking Life playlists in 2019
  • 389 total cuts
  • 105 of those presented here as my favorites of the year

As usual, I didn't hear everything (I didn't even hear everything I wanted to, somehow), nor did I get to spend enough time with much of what I did hear. Still, this list represents six hours and 51 minutes of the music I listened to and enjoyed most (in individual song, anyway, the records I loved are here) -- new big deal artists, tried and true vets, insistent bangers and seemingly minor cuts that may resonate with no one but me.

The same rules as always applied: I tried to avoid multiple selections from the same album when possible (sometimes it just couldn't be helped) and I decided to include early singles from upcoming 2020 releases.

But enough words! The music is waiting – there for you as it always is. It gives back what we put in and then some.

My best to you in the new year, during which I propose we all re-commit to supporting the artists we love when and where we're able. The seeds of fruits to come in your waking life ahead.

Listen to Jeremy Petersen's 2019 Waking Life song picks below.