Nostalgia is really an odd force. An unassuming memory comes to mind and gradually washes over you with growing intensity–equal parts warmth and longing for a time in life that has now passed. But we relish the moments nonetheless, and for myself, nothing brings those memories to life more vividly than music.
I can still hear the intense winds howling steadily across the icy surface of the lake my small, midwestern college was nestled against. The lines dividing the lanes would shift in and out of view as snow drifted on top of the road’s surface, and the defroster of my 92’ Pontiac Grand AM worked valiantly (read as: barely) to stave off the accumulation of ice from my windshield. But you wouldn’t hear any complaints from me—I had the anthemic chorus of Death Cab for Cutie’s Transatlanticism flowing from my partially blown-out speakers.
In the midst of Indiana’s brutal winters, I found solace in long, unintentional drives along miles of farmland and kettle lakes accompanied by curated soundtracks that would help me embrace the slow pace and solitude of the season. Now, twenty years later, I still find opportunities to escape the monotony of winter by hopping in the car, finding a back road, and taking in Maryland’s natural beauty while remembering the past, contemplating the present, and making plans for the warmer and sunnier future.
Let this eclectic playlist put you into that same space with mellow guitars and stirring vocals brought to you by incredible artists like Lord Huron, The xx, Led Zeppelin, and Punch Brothers.