The Very Best Spotify Playlists: A Comprehensive List

4 min read

Caroline Richards ’22

A&E Editor

Ah, Spotify. As we know, Spotify usually does too much. It’s like an overbearing helicopter parent. They personalize the h*ll out of your profile (is it creepy sometimes? Maybe) whether it’s suggested songs for playlists, or the whole Made For You section where they give you three personalized playlists based off of your listening history in the past week, or the annual Year In Review where they take all your listening data and quantify it into categories like Top Artists, Top Song, Top Genre, etc. The new update now gives you these things in “Past Month” form, but I have many a complaint about the new update (more on that later), so we won’t get into it. Spotify also literally hires people to make playlists for their account which you can follow if you’re looking for something quick and easy or if you’re looking to find new music in a particular genre or mood. Arguably some are better than others. Not that my opinion matters much but here are my top five favorite Spotify playlists that I think are generally well put-together and worthwhile.

Park Hangs

Their description: “grab a blanket and get the good vibes going.” Terrible description for a really good playlist. Sort of basic, but sometimes basic is good. Lots of upbeat indie songs that work really well comprehensively. You can put this playlist on and you won’t have to skip a single song. Notable artists include: Tame Impala, Joey Bada$$, Mac Demarco, Goth Babe, A$AP Rocky. 

Surf Rock Sunshine

Their description: “sunny tracks from Mac Demarco, The Beach Boys, and everyone in between.” A little better than Park Hangs, but I think their playlist title also gives more context. This playlist is great for the beach; There are some songs that are chill and slow, and others that are more upbeat and will make you want to dance. A lot of songs I didn’t know but am now happy I do, so if you’re looking for new music I recommend this one. Notable artists include: Summer Salt, Babe Rainbow, Tennis, Allah-Las, Unknown Mortal Orchestra. 

Rap Caviar

Their best playlist in my opinion. RapCaviar walked so that the rest could run. Their description: “Music from Drake, Polo G, and Lil Tecca.” It used to be better, I think a while ago it said something like “The freshest rap tracks out today.” Basically it’s a collection of the newest rap songs, but it isn’t mainstream in the slightest, it’s always including new, breakout artists and more experimental (yet nonetheless successful) songs in the rap world. It also has over 13 million follows, if that doesn’t sell you on it enough. I recommend checking this playlist out weekly, they’re always updating it with new songs and they’re never not good. Notable artists (this week): Lil Tjay, Lil Baby, Saweetie, Polo G, Doja Cat. 

Pollen

Their description: “Genre-less. Quality always first.” Pretty good description, not sure why the playlist is called Pollen but it does draw the eye so fair enough. It’s a relatively new playlist that’s been gaining momentum because it does stay true to it’s “quality always first” covenant. A lot of these artist and songs I didn’t recognize when I first listened to it and now I feel like I’ve discovered an entirely new genre of music which I listen to constantly. It’s rap-esque, but also R&B-esque, but also alternative-esque? Genre-less like they said. Will not disappoint. Notable artists include: Tierra Whack, Yeek, Saba, Jorja Smith, Crumb, Brent Faiyaz, and Still Woozy. 

Songs We Rocked Out To

Their description: “walk down memory lane with the biggest rock anthems.” Self-explanatory, true to it’s word. It’s more contemporary rock than that of the 60s and 70s which I think is a time in rock that’s sometimes forgotten but nonetheless a crowd pleaser. It’s songs you don’t remember you liked. For example, the first song on the playlist is “Tongue Tied” by Grouplove, which I wholeheartedly approve of and I think sets the tone for the rest of the playlist. Also very good for getting work done. Notable artists include: Third Eye Blind, blink-182, The Smashing Pumpkins, Kings of Leon, Counting Crows.

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