This feature was original posted on a previous iteration of our site, and has been updated.
Happy Fourth of July everyone! We put together a playlist just right for Independence Day. It’s a mix of songs old and new, classic and obscure from our Curating-Editor’s catalog of favorites. Now you can be patriotic & still have your dose of alternative culture! Put these songs on replay while you have #FunIndieSun on this Fun 4th Weekend.
Chicago–Saturday In The Park: this classic feel good track is an accurate pick for the holiday weekend. It’s not the 4th of July if you haven’t heard this song at least once throughout the day. But if you’re like me and grew up with Chicago, you’ll just want it playing on loop, since it’s just so infectious.
Rooney–Stars & Stripes: This is my ultimate pick for an Independence Day playlist. It’s the perfect combination of festiveness, social activism, all from stellar unexpected instrumentals from one of my favorite groups.
Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros–Man On Fire: “I want the whole damn world to come dance with me!”
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers–American Girl.
The Tragically Hip–Fireworks.
Portugal. The Man–So American: This song may seem out of place with its lyrics about America, but truly it’s fitting. Just like the social activism in the Rooney track, it’s about what it should mean to be American even though our ideals are often overlooked or forgotten. We have our flaws as a country, but today we all band together and look onto our future in hopes to live up to our dreams.
Hall & Oates–United State: These guys know how write metaphors for relationships, and this song is no different.
Tanlines–Invisible Ways: Most of these songs I picked because they just had that Americana nostalgia soul that just makes you appreciate this country, no matter the genre or content of the track. That’s exactly the vibe that this Tanlines track, off their latest album reminds me of. It’s also a song like Apollo above that serves as the perfect backdrop for a fireworks spectacular. “Montauk not London, I’m at home.”
David Byrne–Independence Day: Now I know what you’re thinking, a cumbia on the 4th? Yes, and here’s why. First, it’s David Byrne…never question a song from this master, it’s law. Second, it’s about a specific type of independence that I’m proud to say this country gets to celebrate this year. Listen closely and you’ll learn this song is not about America’s Independence Day, but rather an day when LGBT couples can walk down the street without fear and proudly celebrate their complete freedom, especially the freedom to marry. With last week’s Supreme Court decision, this song’s dream has finally been realized. Today’s a brighter Independence Day and this song reminds us of that. “Waitin’ such a long time, such a long time…and now it’s here, Independence Day.”
John Fogerty & Foo Fighters–Fortunate Son.
David Byrne & St. Vincent–The Forest Awakes: A song inspired by Walt Whitman about “natural forces and the movement of people,” what better way to end a national celebration? Plus the development from euphoric brass to that epic rock ending with Annie Clark’s guitar shredding provides the perfect cinematic sonics for this patriotic night!
BONUS: Sufjan Stevens’ incredible take on The Star Spangled Banner.
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