When I travel I make a playlist of songs to help spur the sound of my creativity as I walk around a new city. It's a way to catalogue things and situations in my life.
I'd also have to tell you that I had recently been disappointed in the direction of a relationship that never quite got off the ground (and a year later would get off the ground but then end pretty badly after about 16 months or so later) which led to me listening to "Hiatus" by Sugarcult almost every night when I walked home.
There's no better way to fall in love with a new city than by walking as much of it as you can. I like to walk with music on, especially at night, and make my own soundtrack for the events unfolding around me. I identify moments with the music that lurk just underneath the surface. For some reason that's just how my mind works and allows me to remember life experiences.
A Soundtrack To Walk To
Here's some of my top tracks while traveling, mostly due to what was happening in the moments between the beats.
- Sitting by the River Thames on a typical foggy morning, listening to Amos Lee's "I'm Not Myself," waiting for the sun to pop out like it always did.
- Driving down I-45 in Houston with a load of clothes and items for my new apartment in September of 2010 listening to "Everybody Learns From Disaster" by Dashboard Confessional.
- Walking down Sunset Blvd. in Los Angeles looking for inspiration while my friend Jeanette was at work, listening to "Going Through Hell" by The Streets.
- Sitting in a bus in London after having an anxiety attack in an Indian food restaurant by Victoria Station in 2014, listening to "Can't Be Broken" by Twin Forks.
- Walking home late on a Wednesday after playing some music at The Highlander Pub in Paris in 2009, the Eiffel Tower unlit and hulking over the Seine with Augustana's "Sweet And Low" in my ears.
There's too many songs to count, each inextricably connected to some random moment that would be vague and forgotten if not for a lyrical cue somehow. So the next time you travel to a new place, make a musical roadmap to help focus your creativity and to catalogue the random adventures you'll surely have.