In this weekly column, MC/DJ Hesta Prynn pairs pop culture stories with an original playlist.
How do you write a fun pop culture music column when the world is falling apart? I spent the greater part of today asking myself this question. We all love music in part because it helps channel the feelings that we don't have the words to identify. We superimpose ourselves on to our favorite songwriters and, after we've listened on repeat, somehow we feel better. When you're overwhelmed with emotion and there's a shootout being Twittered in real time you need tools to help yourself keep it together. For this week's Five 'n' Five I paired some of the best stress-management strategies with songs from some of my current favorite acts.
1. Dancing: "Closer (The Knocks Remix)," Tegan & Sara
Dancing relieves stress, promotes heart health and prevents dementia (according to the AARP website). Also, duh, it's fun. "Closer" is the new "Dancing on My Own." In their remix, The Knocks added an edge that flirts with "Heads will Roll" territory. Play, sing at top of lungs, dance ass off, repeat.
2. Retail Therapy: "Petition," Tennis
I know I'm not the only one who remembers Mayor Giuliani encouraging us to go shopping in the wake of 9/11. Retail therapy has been proven to improve one's mood (according to both Time and years of my own scientific research) as well as increase self-esteem and a feeling of mastery. I love this Tennis song about "a man of many means" and plan to listen on repeat whilst spending during this time of heightened anxiety.
3. Sex: "Second Hand News," Fleetwood Mac
WebMD cites Scottish researchers who put people in stressful situations like "speaking in public and doing math out loud." The participants who were having regular sex were able to maintain healthier blood pressures than those who weren't. "When times go bad, when times get rough/ Won't you lay me down in the tall grass and let me do my stuff?" -- obvs a reference to being asked to do math on the spot.
4. Yoga: "Overdrawn," White Sea
Yoga calms the mind and increases alpha brain waves that reduce anxiety and depression, according to HuffPo. I love this upbeat yet gentle song by White Sea and I love that it was used in the abortion scene in Season 1 of Girls. It's a great song to enjoy while breathing through the pain. Namasté.
5. Exercise: "Forever," HAIM
Errybody knows that exercise has countless health benefits and is the greatest stress-reducer of all time (besides alcohol). If we have anything in common you too will love listening to this track while running on the treadmill for minutes at a time.