With a heavy downpour of rain hitting Santa Barbara this past week, many of you (like myself) may have understood the bad weather as the perfect opportunity to skip class and stay inside. While most people enjoyed their self-made days off by snuggling up and watching Netflix, others did not have this luxury. Nope — some of you brave ones actually sacrificed dry clothes to attend class. For those of you who were unable to participate in this clichéd rainy-day-Netflix-binge, there is a remedy. I present you with a list of three albums that make up the perfect soundtrack for your rainy day adventures. Whether you are biking to class or running from place to place trying to stay dry, these albums are guaranteed to enhance the bittersweet sensation that comes with a typical rainy day.
- Grace — Jeff Buckley
I cannot count how many times I’ve listened to this album on a gloomy day. Whether you are familiar with Jeff Buckley or not, there is one important thing you must know about his work: It never ceases to reach within the unexplored depths of your heart.
Every time you give this album a listen, you will realize that it will affect you in a different way. While one instance may cause you to remember a bad episode of heartbreak, another will make you completely reevaluate your perception on life. This very fact is why Grace is such a perfect album for a rainy day — it is both pleasant and remorseful.
My favorite song, “Lover, You Should’ve Come Over,” embodies this whole idea. While it is slow, Buckley’s voice and sense of regret is extremely powerful in a way that will make you contemplate the very definition of love. Other songs, such as “Hallelujah” (yes, you know which song I’m talking about) and “Lilac Wine,” achieve this effect in a similar way — exploring the dark side of love while also carrying a unique sense of optimism.
- The Queen is Dead — The Smiths
You can never go wrong with the Smiths. The sound of Steven Morrissey’s soothing English accent as well as the band’s mellow instrumentals are simply addictive. Their sound is filled with melancholy, addressing themes of love and heartbreak that go nicely with a lonely stride in the rain. The Smiths have a way of making me either happy or sad, and perhaps that’s why I keep listening to them — I can never truly decide. They have this compelling way of making me want to confess my love to someone while also making me cautious of the potential pain that could follow.
The best, and undeniably most popular, song on the album is “There is a Light That Never Goes Out.” I remember the first time I listened to this tune, and I will never forget the way the chorus resonated with me: “To die by your side / is such a heavenly way to die.” It’s like a double-whammy, piecing together both death and love in the same sentence. For this very reason, The Smiths go hand-in-hand with gloomy weather.
- In Between Dreams — Jack Johnson
I’m sure you all are familiar with this uplifting album. Unlike Jeff Buckley or The Smiths, Jack Johnson has the magical ability to turn a rough day into a happy one. One thing that has always drawn me to Jack Johnson is his flavorful use of optimism in both his lyrics and his sound. His songs are refreshing, gratifying and hopeful — an instant mood-changer.
A little bit of Jack Johnson is exactly what a rainy day needs: that extra sense of happiness and comfort. “Banana Pancakes” especially adds to that needed good-feel vibe. Starting off with the sound of the rain, this song is undeniably meant to be listened to on a rainy day. So, if you need that extra push to make it through those unwanted showers, Mr. Johnson is your guy.