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Lyric-less Therapy

Sometimes, we experience fairly large life events that touch us deeply, and often we turn to music for solace. I recently lost someone dear to me, and found that listening to music helped me deal with the loss I had just experienced. Cliché…sure. But also—real talk.

Here’s the thing. I’ve always been most moved by music when the construction of chord progressions and notable instrumentation pull at my heartstrings. Lyrics tend to take a back seat with me. I either don’t listen to them, or sometimes I feel like they’re suggesting how I SHOULD feel. Perhaps it’s a result of being raised by parents who played Miles Davis and Duke Ellington nonstop, or because my initial musical outlet was creating instrumental grooves and beats. Sometimes I find a song particularly healing, only to have someone ask me, “Have you LISTENED to the lyrics?! They’re about heroin!!!” Oh boy… Maybe it’s because I didn’t consider myself much of a singer, and focused on the theory aspect of it all?

I’ve decided to put together a particularly healing playlist (at least for me), of exclusively instrumental songs. Every song is powerful enough on its own, sans lyrics. I’ve included a few favorite artists, such as Cape Town-based Bateleur, a brilliantly talented band who put on an absolutely intoxicating live act; Todd Terje, a recent discovery that, I admit, should’ve been on my radar much earlier; Julianna Barwick, who creates mesmerizing soundscapes using her voice as a primary instrument; and Flying Lotus, who I believe is one of the best hip hop producers alive.

My hope is that when you give this a listen, you’ll think of someone special in your life, and get lost in where the music takes you. Have a cry. Have a laugh. Get mad. There are no lyrics to dictate the direction your emotions go.

Jasper Berg

So What Miles Davis Amazon
Chameleon Herbie Hancock Amazon
Green Onions Booker T. & The MGs Amazon
Electric Worm The Beastie Boys Amazon
Changeling/Transmission DJ Shadow Amazon
Waves J Dilla aka Jay Dee Amazon
The Nightcaller Flying Lotus Amazon
Ghostwriter RJD2 Amazon
Goldenboy Thundercat Amazon
Divorce Bateleur  
Huron River Drive Shigeto Amazon
Hands Four Tet Amazon
Dear Grandma and Grandpa Tortoise  
Algol Dawn of Midi Amazon
Hallogallo Neu! Amazon
Preben Goes To Acapulco Todd Terje Amazon
Roygbiv Boards of Canada Amazon
Bats In My Hair Felix Laband Amazon
Olson Boards of Canada Amazon
Ageispolis Aphex Twin Amazon
Postie The Range Amazon
Early In The Morning Felix Laband Amazon
Forever Julianna Barwick Amazon
only love can conquer hate Ryuichi Sakamoto Amazon
1/1 (2004 Digital Remaster) Brian Eno Amazon
Total running time: 2:23


Press PLAY button at top of page to launch the stream; also accessible via iTunes Radio in the "Eclectic" category or with alternate player, or go directly to the stream's URL. Download web apps for your mobile device from Live365.
128 kbps requires broadband.

"Buy" buttons next to scrolling playlist link to Amazon; however, if our tags and Amazon's aren't identical it may say "not found" when the track is in fact available — in which case use the applicable link in the tunestack above.

A new playlist is cued at the beginning of every month. Previous months don't continue to stream, but the archived playlists are posted for your reference.

For queries, feedback & technical issues, write to the address listed here. Happy listening...


Link to archived playlists

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