Music to Get You Through - Tony’s List

By Ron Kroon/Anefo, Wiki Commons

Music can inspire, enrage, excite, quiet, trouble and move us in powerful ways. In this unique summer season IFYC wants to share a window into our incredible team by regularly sharing playlists from team members. Our first contribution is from Tony Banout, Senior Vice President of IFYC. Tony holds a doctorate in Religious Ethics from the Divinity School at the University of Chicago, where he was Martin Marty Center and Provost fellow. A dyed-in-the-wool New Yorker, he was raised in an immigrant household steeped in the Coptic Orthodox church and absorbed both Roman Catholic and Islamic influences.  

He wasn’t right about everything, but Nietzsche was certainly right about music – life would be a mistake without it. These days I’ve explored new and not so new technologies. Music has been a key old technology, keeping me balanced. Along with reading physical books and manual labor projects, I’ve been tuning in to the “radio” and messing around with mostly acoustic instruments. The music I’m leaning on maps to stages of experiencing these unusual times. I need stuff to get me moving and put a kick in my pants, stuff that taps sadness, stuff that gently infuses hope. I’ve discovered and rediscovered tracks that mean something to me.  

Turn your radio on with Roy Acuff, and then tune in by honoring the late great John Prine, who died of Covid-19. From his legacy I’m getting my anchor track for these days, Angel From Montgomery. Special lines interspersed throughout the playlist, with a fair share of kick in the pants: “I walked through you, and I walked through an old me,” and “Don’t you want to dance?!”, because at the end of the day, we’re all knocking on heaven’s door. Listen to the whole playlist on Spotify.

  1. Roy Acuff: Turn Your Radio On 
  1. John Prine: Angel From Montgomery 

  1. Nina Simone: I Shall be Released  

  1. U2: Beautiful Day, David Holmes Remix 

  1. New Order: Bizarre Love Triangle 

  1. Miles Davis: So What (Live) from the live album Highlights from the Plugged Nickel 

  1. John Mayall and the Blues Breakers: All of Your Love 

  1. Patti Smith: The People Have the Power  

  1. Led Zeppelin: Fool in the Rain 

  1. John Coltrane: My Favorite Things 

  1. Lucinda Williams: You Can’t Rule Me 

  1. Richie Havens: I Started a Joke 

  1. Maggie Rogers: Alaska 

  1. Michael Franti & Spearhead: Hello Bonjour 

  1. Wilco: Outtasite (Out of Mind) 

  1. Brandi Carlile: Hold Out Your Hand 

  1. Adele: Chasing Pavements 

  1. Bob Marley: Three Little Birds 

  1. Bruce Springsteen: The Dancing in the Dark/Land of Hope and Dreams acoustic medley 

  1. Antony and the Johnsons: Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door 

Editor’s Note: Please also listen to Psalm Season a concert of music, poetry and dance that explores the lament, hope and spiritual power of the Psalms.   

If you are looking for a way to become an interfaith leader, work for racial equity and build bridges, please check out our free curriculum "We Are Each Other's" and start your interfaith leadership today

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The opinions contained in this piece are solely the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the views of Interfaith Youth Core. Interfaith America encourages a wide range of views and strives to maintain a respectful tone with a goal of greater understanding and cooperation between people of different faiths, worldviews, and traditions.