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Music

Far Out 40: Perfect songs to welcome spring

@SamWKemp

There’s something about that first day of spring. After months of cold winds and encroaching darkness, that first sunny day in March seems full of promise. Out we come, stumbling into the light – scarfs wrapped tightly around our necks only to be tossed aside. And as we pad along the streets, we remember that it’s not so bad being human after all, that as long as the sun shines, we can bare anything.

Spring has a wonderful ability to rejuvenate. It is perhaps this that has inspired so many musicians to write odes to the season, in which they are either looking ahead to its arrival or basking its all-consuming presence. If winter is writer’s block, spring is an unstoppable flow of ideas and creative energy.

For George Harrison, spring seems to have marked the rebirth of joy, of life itself. In ‘Here Comes The Sun‘, The Beatles guitarist notices “smiles returning to the faces” as the fresh sun warms the world around him and begins melting the winter ice. Everything, it seems, is going to be “alright” after all.

For others, spring is a little harder to define. Take Art Garfunkel for example. In his cover of Antônio Carlos Jobim’s ‘Waters of March’, he tries to capture the essence of spring with one unifying image (It’s the wind blowing free, it’s the end of the slope / It’s a beam, it’s a void, it’s a hunch, it’s a hope.”), but always fails. Unable to define spring, he finds himself listening to the hum of the season pulsing through all things, human and non-human alike. “And the riverbank talks of the waters of March,” he sings – content to let the world spin.

Spring undoubtedly has a huge effect on us. And with the season in full swing (Here in the UK at least), now seems the perfect time to share a selection of 40 songs to welcome it back into our lives. Some of the tracks are very obviously about spring: ‘Nina Simone’s ‘Spring Is Here’ for example; others carry the feeling of spring – that promise of warmth and new life.

You’ll find songs from the 1950s right up to the present day on our sparkling spring playlist. From Paul McCartney and Nick Drake to Mitski and Galaxie 500, there really is something for everyone. Happy spring listening.

40 songs to welcome spring:

  • ‘Fawn’ – Tom Waits
  • Spring Is Here’ – Nina Simone
  • ‘Trees And Flowers’ – Strawberry Switchblade
  • ‘When Its Springtime in Alaska’ – Johnny Cash
  • ‘The Shining’ – Badly Drawn Boy
  • ‘Cardigan Song’ – Kikagaku moyo
  • ‘Here Comes The Sun’ – The Beatles
  • ‘Waters Of March’ – Art Garfunkel
  • ‘Alright’ – Supergrass
  • ‘Dry The Rain’ – Beta Band
  • ‘Mr Blue Sky’ – Electric Light Orchestra
  • ‘First Love/ Late Spring’ – Mitski
  • ‘Blackbird’ – The Beatles
  • ‘Fruit Tree’ – Nick Drake
  • ‘Otis’ – Durutti Column’
  • ‘Under The Sun’ – DIIV
  • ‘Early Blue’ – F.J. McMahon
  • ‘Sweet Thing’ – Van Morrison
  • ‘Diamond Day’ – Vashti Bunyan
  • ‘Waiting For The Sun’ – The Doors
  • ‘Spring’ – Angel Olsen
  • ‘April Skies’ – Jesus and Mary Chain
  • ‘When The Sun Hits’ – Slowdive
  • ‘Its A Wonderful Life’ – Sparklehorse
  • ‘What A Wonderful World’ – Louis Armstrong
  • ‘New Grass’ – Talk Talk
  • ‘Armellodie’ – Chilly Gonzales
  • ‘April Come She Will’ – Simon & Garfunkel
  • ‘Sunny Afternoon’ – The Kinks
  • ‘Flowers’ – Galaxie 500
  • ‘Mesmerise’ – Chapterhouse
  • ‘April In Paris’ – Billie Holiday
  • ‘Soleil’ Francois Hardy
  • ‘Through The Grass’ – Wild Nothing
  • ‘Blue Eyed Baby’ – Ed Askew
  • ‘Fallin Rain’ – Link Wray
  • ‘Can’t Stop The Spring’ – The Flaming Lips
  • ‘Its A Beautiful Morning’ – The Rascals
  • ‘Air à Danser’ – Panguin Cafe Orchestra
  • The Bug Collector’ – Haley Heynderickx