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“Goodnight Irene”- A Playlist for the Night Before Hurricane Irene



We, like so many New Yorkers, were looking for a way to pass the time on Saturday when the shops were boarding up their windows and the subways were totally shut down. To pass the time we’ve asked all of you to help us put together a “waiting-for-the-hurricane” playlist. Here’s what we came up with. Everyone who sent us a song that made it on the playlist is getting a free membership. I wrote the name of the first person to respond after the song. (Sorry if you sent the same song in later, we had to just take the first person to respond with a given song.) If that’s you, e-mail us at and we’ll send you a one-year membership. If you don’t see a song you think should be here, leave a comment. Maybe I’ll update the mix-tape and give you a membership if I think you’re suggestion is good enough.

[Side note: We have put a ban on responses that include The Scorpions’ “Rock You Like A Hurricane,” Bob Dylan’s “Hurricane,” Neil Young’s “Like a Hurricane,” or Led Zeppelin’s “When the Levees Break.” We also tried to find songs that don’t have “hurricane” in the title.]

We’ve made this playlist available through Spotify. Click the link to be taken to the playlist in Spotify.

1. “Goodnight Irene” – Leadbelly
(Charles Kinbote)

2. “And It Rained All Night” – Thom Yorke

3. “Dry the Rain” – The Beta Band
(Fucking Nostalgic)

or go here

4. “All the Umbrellas in London” – The Magnetic Fields

5. “Make It Rain” – Tom Waits
(Nick Salvatore)

6. “When the Sun Don’t Shine” – Best Coast
(Sarah Hopkins)

7. “Blown Away” – Pixies

8. “Here Comes the Rain Again” – Eurythmics

9. “Deep Water” – Portishead

10. “Only Happy When It Rains” – Garbage
(Brently Rosenthal / Sarah Kirkland Snider)

11. “Rain” – Shonen Knife

12. “A Rainy Night in Soho” – The Pogues

13. “Hurricane J” – The Hold Steady
(Caleb Burhans)

14. “Hurricane and Fire Survival Guide” – Cloud Cult
(Ashleigh Lambert)

15. “Five Feet High and Rising” – Johnny Cash
(Jöslyn Vice)

16. “High Water Everywhere” – Charley Patton

17. “The Eye of the Hurricane” – Herbie Hancock
(Liana Eagle)

18. “Irene” – Caribou

19. “Storm” – Godspeed You Black Emperor!
(Derek Vizzi)

20. “It’s Gonna Rain pt. 1” – Steve Reich
(Ryan Jesperson)

21. “Purple Rain” – Prince
(this one is in honor of the potential grossness of the Gowanus)

Some songs that were great suggestions but didn’t make the cut: Blondie – “The Tide is High,” The Rolling Stones – “Gimme Shelter,” The Doors – “Riders on the Storm,” Florence & the Machine – “Hurricane Drunk,” Air – “The World Hurricane,” Doveman – “Hurricane,” Bush Tetras – “Things That Go Boom in the Night,” Patti Smith – “Pissing in the River,” Grateful Dead – “Blow Away,” Lena Horne – “Stormy Weather,” Eric Idle / Monty Python – “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life,” LCD Soundsystem – “Time to Get Away,” The Black Kids – “Hurricane Jane,” Jimi Hendrix – “In From the Storm,” Cap’n Jazz – “Puddle Splashers,” Len – “Steal My Sunshine,” The Rolling Stones – “Jumping Jack Flash,” Milli Vanilli – “Blame it on the Rain,” Song Youth – “Rain King,” Nick Drake – “Northern Sky,” PJ Harvey – “The Sky Lit Up”

Have other suggestions? Leave them in the comments.