After winter must come spring. Last month, All Songs Considered asked for stories about the songs that make you cry — and received about 8,000 responses, some of them deeply personal. It seemed only fitting, then, to explore the other side of the issue. On this week's show, Bob Boilen, Robin Hilton, and ASC listeners share the songs that elevate their mood, inspiring them to whistle, dance in public, and move on from hardship and heartbreak.
Tell us your own picks for songs that make you happy in the comments section below. You can also check out more songs to make you feel good on our blog.
- from Exile On Main Street
- by Rolling Stones
Listener Pick from Lee: Nothing makes me as happy consistently or makes me want to dance more than the Rolling Stones' 'Rocks Off.' Whenever it comes on it immediately makes me want to jump up and down, especially if I'm by myself."
- from Writer's Block
- by Peter Bjorn and John
Listener Pick from Mitch: "It's part of whole genre of smile songs--those with whistling. Try not to smile when you hear the Harlem Globetrotters theme 'Sweet Georgia Brown' or the theme to the Andy Griffith Show 'Fishin' Hole.'"
Dog Days Are Over
- from Lungs
- by Florence and the Machine
Listener Pick from Francesca: "For the last two years I was living in Egypt and I had to evacuate, and it caused me to be separated from my boyfriend. I'm a modern dance teacher and I was rooting through my boyfriend's music files and I found (this) song. It's an incredibly bouncy, poppy, uplifting move-your-body-kind of song. And there was something about dancing completely freely and all over the place to this song."
In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
- from In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
- by Neutral Milk Hotel
Picked by Robin (and listeners): "Hearing this is like hitting the reset button in life. No matter how bad things might be, I can hear this song and be reminded of how strange it is to be anything at all."
The Swimming Song
- from Attempted Mustache
- by Loudon Wainwright III
Listener Pick from Allie: "This song to me is a reminder that even if you think you're going to fail, you just keeping going, and you just might make it. Sometimes I just put the song on repeat and enjoy it."
- from I Put a Spell on You
- by Nina Simone
Listener Pick from Sarah: "I found out that my ex was an ENORMOUS dirtbag. Right about the same time I discovered Nina Simone's out-of-this-world version of 'Feelin' Good.' Now every time I listen to it, I can't help but grin and feel liberated."
I Wanna Be Sedated
- from Road to Ruin
- by Ramones
Picked by Bob: "I just need something with a lot of punch and power to make me happy. And The Ramones' 'I Wanna Be Sedated,' (does it) because always just feels right, right at the moment you're feeling down. But the whole song is so uplifting."