We all get tired of the same old workout routines, the same moves, the same equipment, the same paths we run. As a lifelong music lover and a longtime runner, I find that without a great playlist with a wide variety of tunes playing in my ears, I just can’t seem to get my “get up and go” to cooperate. Sometimes, all it takes to shake things up and get you motivated and focused again is injecting some new inspiration via ear candy to really get those endorphins going.
That’s why we’re creating a series of playlists, each one perfect for a different mood. This one, our first, is all about getting you going. Some of the tracks are mainstream, from artists you are likely to be familiar with, and some you might just be discovering for the first time. That’s the way we like it. This is our version of a Mix Tape, and we’re labeling it MOTIVATE.
Get your headphones. Let’s do this.
*To hear entire playlist and add it to your own workout music, follow this link: TONE AND STYLE MOTIVATE PLAYLIST
1. We The People – A Tribe Called Quest
Starting things off with plenty of attitude is We The People; a single off of the long-awaited, (as in 18 years since their last album) just dropped and still ultra hot new A Tribe Called Quest album We Got It From Here, Thank You For Your Service.
2. 3 AM Eternal – The KLF
We’re bouncing back, waaay back, to a 1991 classic dance/electronic tune, 3 AM Eternal; from the The White Room; the final album The KLF released. And yes, it really does sound just as fresh and danceable today as it did when (some of us) were dancing to it as youngsters 25 years ago.
3. Because I’m Me – The Avalanches
A Tribe Called Quest aren’t the only comeback kids in this playlist. Because of Me from the Australian group of DJs The Avalanches is off of their first album in sixteen years, Wildflower, released in July of this year. We tend to think if this song is any indication, it was definitely worth the wait.
4. The Greatest – Sia (Featuring Kendrick Lamar)
Never one to be left off of anyone’s playlist for any occasion, pop music’s songwriting giant and formidable singer/pop star on her own, Sia, along with hip hop’s current messiah, Kendrick Lamar, more than deliver the pop pick me up goods with The Greatest.
5. Strict Machine – Goldfrapp
This English duo responsible for a wealth of infectious electronica, Goldfrapp, is always a good place to look for songs that make your inner dancer really want to move. As with most of the band’s songs, Strict Machine, a single from their 2003 album Black Cherry is full of glam rock beats and lush, sexy lyrics.
6. High Dive – Andrew McMahon
Released in 2014, the self titled indie-pop album, Andrew McMahon in The Wilderness produced this undeniably upbeat and nostalgically romantic single High Dive. This is another song you’ll be playing both inside the gym and likely everywhere else. On. Repeat.
7. Music Sounds Better With You – Stardust
Coming at you from 1998, with a House/Electronica song that sounds more like it belongs in the future somewhere, Music Sounds Better With You is the only song ever released by a trio consisting of Thomas Bangalter, Alan Braxe, and Benjamin Diamond. Once you listen to this one, you’ll wish they released more. (Us too.)
8. Adderall – Max Frost
Just released on December 7, 2016, this new single by singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist mega talent, Max Frost, will get in your head and stay there. Warning: This one’s like the pharmaceutical that shares its title. It will pep you up, get you going, and is likely to be a bit addictive.
9. Oh No! – Marina And The Diamonds
Oh No! from 2010’s album, The Family Jewels, is one of our favorites from the Welsh born singer/songwriter, Marina Lambrini Diamandis, (AKA Marina And The Diamonds). This girl right here sings about not wanting anything she doesn’t make or do herself. (And nobody better stand in her way on the road to success.) Yep. This one can be one of your mantra songs for certain.
10. 24K Magic – Bruno Mars
24K Magic off the album of the same title comes from the reigning king of pop ear worms, massively multi talented Bruno Mars. Singer. Songwriter. Multi-instrumentalist. Producer. Choreographer. No, no one will take Prince’s place. But…
11. Heads Will Roll – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Coming from NYC based pop-punk group Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Heads Will Roll is maybe their most well known (rightly so) single from their 2009 album, It’s Blitz! This one rocks. Hard. So will you.
12. All Night – Chance The Rapper
All Night is one of our favorite tracks from this year’s recently released, much-lauded monster of a mixtape, Coloring Book, from one of hip hop’s most spiritual figures, Chance The Rapper. Catchy. Complex. We’ll have both, please.
13. This Is What You Came For – Calvin Harris (Featuring Rihanna)
You probably already know all about the drama and gossip surrounding this necessary motivational pop confection by Scottish DJ Calvin Harris, featuring the one and only pop/hip hop princess, Rihanna. Taylor Swift, uncredited songwriting, and a relationship gone very sour, very publicly aside, This Is What You Came For, does its job as pop/electronic/ semi-house music style tune.
14. That’s Not My Name – The Ting Tings
That’s Not My Name, off their album, We Started Nothing, by British pop duo The Ting Tings is a song the band’s vocalist, Katie White, wrote about being frustrated at being categorized and often misunderstood. It’s just the sort of strong female song that is just as empowering as it is one that makes it almost impossible to listen to and sit still for long.
15. Can’t Get You Out Of My Head – Kylie Minogue
Starting off as a TV star on Australia’s soap opera, Neighbours, Kylie Minogue has been making pop albums since 1987. Can’t Get You Out Of My Head from her 2001 album Fever is one of her most sexy, fun electronic pop offerings.
16. Let It Happen – Tame Impala
Also Australian but most definitely bringing a different sound to the table, Tame Impala has been around since 2007, when lead man Kevin Parker, who also serves as songwriter/singer/multi instrumentalist, and producer, formed the psychedelic band. Let It Happen is a tune from 2014’s album, Currents. This song came on a Pandora station while I was out driving one night, running late for a meeting. I stayed in the car, for the whole seven minutes and fifty four seconds of this lush little wonder, making myself later and later with each note. Worth it? Most definitely.