It’s pretty hard these days to have a conversation with anyone that isn’t all about COVID-19, and the relentless barrage of news coverage has been mostly anxiety producing as everyone copes with our new reality. As I enjoyed my morning coffee at home two Sundays ago, I read in the paper that the actress Rita Wilson had compiled a coronavirus playlist from her hospital bed in Australia where she and hubby Tom Hanks were dealing with their own personal coronavirus recovery.
That inspired me to try and crowd source a coronavirus playlist with my social-media friends in the hope that it might make a nice break from the daily news cycle as well as a test of the musical chops of my Facebook network. I asked folks to try and keep the songs positive, and being a baby boomer like Tom and Rita, I needed a lot of input from Gen X’ers and Millennials, since my children are pretty sure my musical tastes atrophied sometime in the mid-1980s.
Needless to say, I was quite elated with the response as my wife, Tina, kept daily track of my post’s likes, comments and shares, pointing out interesting song choices and as well as some video clips. In total, I got more than 80 responses, displaying a lot of creativity, representing both classic and contemporary music, and adding a couple of local artists for good measure.
So, in honor of COVID-19, here are my 19 favorite song titles generated by a great group of friends and colleagues. And guess what, kids? I have actually heard of “some” of these songs and artists.
1. “U Can’t Touch This,” M.C. Hammer
2. “Don’t Stand So Close to Me,” the Police
3. “I Can’t Get Next to You,” Al Green or The Temptations
4. “Fever,” Peggy Lee
5. “Alone Again (Naturally),” Gilbert O’Sullivan
6. “Party of One,” Brandi Carlile
7. “All by Myself,” Eric Carmen
8. “One is the Loneliest Number,” Three Dog Night
9. “Are You Alright?” Lucinda Williams
10. “You Can Look (But You’d Better Not Touch)” Bruce Springsteen
11. “Can’t Feel My Face,” the Weeknd
12. “Hands Clean,” Alanis Morissette
13. “Stay Away,” Nirvana
14. “It’s Oh So Quiet,” Björk
15. “Holed Up,” Tony Joe White
16. “When Will I See You Again,” the Three Degrees
17. “Don’t Give Up,” Bruno Mars
18. “Someday We’ll Be Together,” Diana Ross & the Supremes
19. “I Will Survive,” Gloria Gaynor