I love music and books, so why not mix the two and make book themed playlists? I loved this book, and it specifically mentioned one of my favorite songs, so this seems like a good book to start this whole playlist thing with.
Vague spoilers in some of the explanations of why I picked each song, but I will mark those so you won’t accidentally read something you didn’t want to.
“Fake Plastic Trees” – Radiohead
Obviously this has to be the first song in the playlist. It was specifically mentioned in the book, and it’s a beautiful song. There are so many amazing things about this song that I can’t really decide on a favorite, but I think my favorite thing might be the bass. I’m a bassist, so obviously I’m going to love the bass, but I especially love the bass in this song. The bass in this song is very gentle and subtle, and it doesn’t distract from the acoustic guitar and the vocals. Not that the bass in other Radiohead songs distracts from other parts of the songs. I’m just saying that in this song the bass sounds SO GOOD.
“Love At First Sight” – The Brobecks
I know that Finny and Hannah didn’t have love at first sight, and they actually knew each other for a long time before they fell in love. But I’m a sad person who hasn’t fallen in love, and, because of that, I tend not to listen to songs about love. There are a few love songs that I like, but for the most part I listen to songs about emotions I can relate to, and those emotions are not romantic love, so…
This is a very sweet love song. It’s honestly probably my third favorite from this album, so it’s not like I just picked a random love song and threw it in here because I don’t know that many love songs. Even though I’m a cynical pessimist who doesn’t entirely believe that I could ever have a relationship, I love this song. It’s beautiful and sweet, and it’s just a wonderful love song, even if you’re not in love with someone.
Also, I’m in love with the vocals in this song. They aren’t the stereotypical vocals from an alternative band. They are so much better. I can’t.
“The Only Exception” – Paramore
Because Finny and Hannah are so cute together… And I really want to have a fitting love song for them. This isn’t really a perfect fit either, but it’s also a good love song.
“Tear In My Heart” – Twenty One Pilots
I’m going to stop it with the love songs after this one. I feel like, out of all the love songs I’ve picked, this is probably the most fitting? It’s another cute love song, and it’s the most fitting song that I’ll find in my music collection. I could probably find some Arctic Monkeys song that worked, but I said I was going to stop it with the love songs, and I can’t think of a good Arctic Monkeys love song off the top of my head.
“Hard Times” – Paramore
I feel like this is a song that could have been playing in a store when Hannah was at the mall, or something she could have heard from an open window of a passing car. Lyrically, it may not be a perfect fit, but I still think it’s worth including. Even though this wasn’t a happy book-people died, bad things happened-they got through the hard times, and it had a good ending. The best part of the ending is that it wasn’t a forced happy ending, like some young adult books have these days. It was a realistic believable happy ending.
“Death Deserves A Name” – Can’t Swim
There’s a lot of death and sadness in this book, so I think this song works well with it. I think the kind of echoing sound of the guitar at the beginning is nicely haunting, which I think is good for this book since there are so many ghosts. I could also see Lillian singing this, sadly, while wandering around Hannah’s room. (I had a different song in mind for Lillian, but I decided to use it for a different playlist and I don’t want too many repeats in my playlists so I decided to go with this one instead.)
“I Wanna Be Yours” – Arctic Monkeys
Remember when I said I was going to stop it with the love songs? I lied. But this one is actually going to be the last one. I said that there was probably an Arctic Monkeys song that would fit better than the other ones on this list, but at the time I couldn’t think of any. I thought of one. This is another sweet love song, and, out of all of the ones I picked, I think that this one is the best.
“Daydreaming” – Radiohead
I didn’t pick this one because of the lyrics. I picked this one because I think the sound goes well with the book. This song is somewhat haunting and beautiful, and I think Paper Valentine could be described the same way. Also, half of this playlist is love songs, and the main focus of this book is not the romance, so I wanted the last song of the playlist to not be a cute love song. And I think the rest of the playlist is too happy, so it has to end on a sad song. And every good playlist begins and ends with Radiohead.
I was going to do something online where you could click on a link and listen to the entire playlist, but I tried two different websites for this and neither of them worked the way I wanted them to, so instead, if I know of a live version that I particularly like for any of the songs on the playlist, I’ll link them at the end.
This is a live version of “Fake Plastic Trees” that I really like – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsMmJjWe0hM
The music video is also cool and I would recommend checking it out if you haven’t already.
This post is really late going up, and, off the top of my head, I can’t think of any memorable live versions I’ve seen of the other songs on this playlist. I’m sure that if you looked for live versions of “Daydreaming” they’d be amazing because all Radiohead live performances are. I know that there are some good live performances of “I Wanna Be Yours” because I watched MANY of them while I was learning the bass line from it, but it’s really late and I don’t feel like looking for more things on Youtube right now. If I find a live version I especially like, I’ll put it in the comments.