I planned to wait until Friday to post this, but I just feel like everyone might need it today! I turned 35 on August 30th this year, and this playlist is part of my MEPturns35 project, which I used to encourage/educate/harass people to get ready to VOTE this November. (Which also inspired this post – What my 35th Birthday Taught me About Voting – which you should definitely read!) One of the arms of this project was a playlist. So, here it is. Hope you find a least a couple tracks to encourage you in this season. Below, you have the playlist in 3 formats, followed by a track list with the best lyrics, because I’m extra like that. And the absolute, must-listen songs are highlighted! Enjoy!
This playlist is filled with songs that make you go…
- lol, ‘merica. 🤣😭🤦🏻♀️
- omg America! 😭🥰
- ❤️🌎✊🏼LET’S CHANGE THE WORLD!! ✊🏼🌎 ❤️
- okay, maybe I can’t change the world, but God is still here, and He’s good and He loves us.
- Make Them Hear You – Ragtime: An American Musical – Your sword could be a sermon / Or the power of the pen / Teach every child to raise his voice / And then my brothers, then / Will justice be demanded by ten million righteous men
- America – West Side Story – Life can be bright in America / If you can fight in America / Life is alright in America / If you’re a white in America
- Icky Thump – The White Stripes – White Americans / What, nothing better to do? / Why don’t you kick yourself out? / You’re an immigrant too
From Tuesday Justice: The Socially Conscious Artistry of Childish Gambino’s “This Is America”
- Yell Fire! – Michael Franti and Spearhead – A revolution never come with a warning / A revolution never sends you an omen / A revolution just arrived like the morning / Ring the alarm, we come to wake up the snoring
- The Revolution Will Not Be Televised – Gil Scott Heron – The revolution will not go better with Coke / The revolution will not fight germs that may cause bad breath / The revolution will put you in the driver’s seat / The revolution will not be televised
- I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free – Nina Simone – I wish I could share / All the love that’s in my heart / Remove all the bars / That keep us apart / I wish you could know / What it means to be me / Then you’d see and agree / That every man should be free
- Gregory Porter – 1960 What (Opolopo Kick & Bass Rerub) – Young man, coming out of a liquor store / With three pieces of black liquorice, in his hand y’all / Mister police man! Thought it was a gun, thought he was the one / Shot him down y’all, that ain’t right
- Creedence Clearwater Revival: Fortunate Son – Some folks inherit star spangled eyes / Ooh, they send you down to war, Lord / And when you ask ’em, “How much should we give?” / Ooh, they only answer “More! More! More!”, y’all
- Yorktown – Hamilton – I mean, if you don’t feel some patriotism watching this, I think you might wanna check your pulse. These guys “fought for a nation we now get to build.” And we get to build on their legacy with our votes.
- Ring the Bells – JOHNNYSWIM, Drew Holcomb, and The Neighbors – Ring the bells, this time I mean it / Bid the hatred “fare thee well” / Give back the pieces of my Jesus / Take your counterfeit to hell / Bang the drums, this means war / Not the kind you’re waiting for / We say mercy won’t be rationed here / That’s what we’re fighting for
- Justicia – The Porter’s Gate (feat. Tina Colon Williams) – We fight for the victories we know You can win! / Come Lord Jesus
- “Stand Up” – Official Lyric Video – Performed by Cynthia Erivo – Can you hear freedom calling? / Calling me to answer / Gonna keep on keepin’ on / I can feel it in my bones
- Michael Kiwanuka – Black Man In A White World – I feel like I’ve been here before / I feel that knocking on my door / And I’ve lost everything I had / And I’m not angry and I’m not mad / I’m a black man in a white world
- Common, John Legend – Glory – Selma’s now for every man, woman and child / Even Jesus got his crown in front of a crowd / They marched with the torch, we gon’ run with it now / Never look back, we done gone hundreds of miles
- Ben Harper – Better Way (Live Eurockéennes 2008) – What good is a man / Who won’t take a stand / What good is a cynic / With no better plan / I believe in a better way
- Laura Mvula – Overcome ft. Nile Rodgers – It ain’t no time to die, die / Even though we suffer / Come together, be brave / Come together / All God’s children, come
- John Legend, The Roots – Wake Up Everybody ft. Melanie Fiona, Common – Wake up all the builders time to build a new land / I know we can do it if we all lend a hand
- Kirk Franklin – “Lift Every Voice and Sing” – You can really just pick your favorite version. There are SO MANY amazing ones. The Apple & Spotify playlists feature Beyonce’s version because it just felt right, ya know? Lift ev’ry voice and sing / ‘Til earth and heaven ring / Ring with the harmonies of Liberty
- The Porter’s Gate – Daughters of Zion (feat. Casey J & Urban Doxology) – Sorrow won’t always last / The dark will surely pass / Woe to the wicked ones / For what their hands have done / God is our righteous judge / And He will raise us up
- Billy Porter “For What It’s Worth” – Black Lives Matter – There’s battle lines being drawn / And nobody’s right if everybody’s wrong / Young people speakin’ their minds / A-gettin’ so much resistance from behind
- Sho Baraka – Here, 2016 (feat. Lecrae) – Love over hate, love over hate / I’m here for that / Real over fake, real over fake / I’m here for that / Truth and faith, truth and faith / I’m here for that / Beauty and grace, beauty and grace / I’m here for that
- Illuminate the Shadows – The Porter’s Gate (feat. Paul Zach & Latifah Alattas) – Illuminate the shadows / Break oppression with your mighty arm / Oh God our help in the time of trouble
- Sigala, Fuse ODG, Sean Paul – Feels Like Home ft. Kent Jones – Just an all out, feel good 2020 favorite. Heard it on a bus in Grenada, and voting gives good vibes ALWAYS!
Wherever the good vibe is / It feels like home
- Bunji Garlin – Lookin For China (Explore Riddim) “2020 Soca” (Trinidad) – But in we DNA well it is written / As little children when we grow / To go searching, searching / Penetrating barriers like ah urchin
- JOHNNYSWIM: Diamonds – We’re the fire, from the sun / We’re the light when the day is done / We are the brave, we’re the chosen ones / We’re the diamonds, diamonds / Rising about the dust.
- The Brilliance – “Brother” – When I look into the face / Of my enemy / I see my brother / I see my brother
- Through Heaven’s Eyes- Prince of Egypt Soundtrack – If this song doesn’t make you wanna take on laugh and dance and cry a little, then I’m sorry. You got issues. My therapist is amazing, and she can help. Just reach out.
No life can escape being blown about / By the winds of change and chance / And though you never know all the steps / You must learn to join the dance
- We Will Make No Peace With Oppression – The Porter’s Gate – We will march in the street, no justice no peace / Arm and arm with our neighbor til we all stand free / Almighty God, help us not to be afraid / Almighty God, give us your strength
- Let Justice Roll – The Ethnos Project – Indwell us Lord and purify / Our hands to work for You / Enlist us Lord to serve nearby / And ‘cross the waters too / Your image-bearers on the earth / Will never know how much they’re worth / Unless we love and help them first / And show the way to You
- THE ROOM WHERE IT HAPPENS – HAMILTON – God help and forgive me / I wanna build / Something that’s gonna / Outlive me
- Father, Let Your Kingdom Come (featuring Urban Doxology, Liz Vice, and Latifah Alattas) – Hallelu, hallelujah / Father, let Your kingdom come / May the works of my hands bring You joy / May the words from my mouth speak Your peace
- Day by Day (Live) (feat. Joy Ike) – Server, you remind us of our Savior’s bowl and towel / Teacher, you are raising up a child to be kind / Lawyer, give us hope that justice one day will surround us / Farmer, you are working for a table full of bounty / Painter, with each color you are teaching us to see / Nurse, yours are the healing hands that touch the poor and broken / Carpenter, you frame a house for those who need protection / Laborer, you lift a heavy burden for the weak / Leaders, build a city that all children may rejoice in
- The Brilliance – Turning Over Tables – Love is turnin’ over tables / Breakin’ off chains / When I see you in the stranger / I’m no longer a slave / Turnin’ over tables / Tearin’ down walls / Buildin’ up the bridges / Between us all
- Black Eyed Peas – Be Nice (feat. Snoop Dogg) – Just a whole MOOD for election season, ya know? Vote, campaign, give, and BE NICE!
Hey, be different / Be nice / Just smile, I promise it’ll change your life