It’s 2018, y’all! Can you believe it? I certainly can’t! But believe it or not, a new year is upon us, which to some means “new year, new me.” While I don’t believe in a new me, I am definitely one of those people that chooses to see the new year as more than “just another day.” The coming of the new year is symbolic for starting anew, letting go of the old, and refocusing on our goals. It is also a time for reflection and setting the tone for what you want in the next 365 days to come. And nothing goes better with starting new than some music!
David Nazario, of the lifestyle brand, Scared of A Day Job, and Taliah Feldi, of Taliah Vibes, collaborated with me to bring you a list of 10 songs that will not only inspire and motivate you, but help you bring in 2018.
One – Mary J. Blige and U2
When the Queen of Hip Hop Soul linked up with U2 on her classic album, The Breakthrough, the outcome was “One,” a heartfelt track about loving thy neighbor as thyself. It’s rock, it’s soul, and it’s the perfect theme song for the new year.
“One love, one blood, one life, you got to do what you should. One life with each other. Sisters, brothers. One life, but we’re not the same. We got to carry each other, carry each other.”
Pick Up and Go – T.O.P
“Pick Up And Go” is always going to be one of my favorite “chase your dream” anthems. It’s filled with meaningful, slick rhymes and enough inspiration to take us into 2018 and beyond.
“Told my niggas it’s the vision, we ain’t gotta pitch it. No more dying young and sittin’ in they prisons.”
Alright – Ledisi
All is well and everything will always be alright, that’s the sentiment on Philly artist Ledisi’s hit single, “Alright.” It’s a go-to song for me when I need to regroup and remind myself to count my blessings.
“Life can bring us through many changes, it’s alright, just don’t give up just know that it’s gonna be alright. People come and they go, that’s just the way that it goes. Everything is everything. It’s gonna be alright.”
Stay Blessed – Schoolboy Q ft. Kendrick Lamar
First World Problemz/Nobody Carez – Brent Faiyaz
Smile – Jay Z
Ultralight Beam – Kanye West ft Chance The Rapper
No matter what mood I am in, Kanye West’s opening track to The Life of Pablo manages to lift me right up. In this spiritual-esque song, Kanye and Chance the Rapper go into not letting the devils get them down and living God’s dream. Whenever I need to refocus and reset, I run to this track.
“Father, this prayer is for everyone that feels they’re not good enough
This prayer’s for everybody that feels like they’re too messed up
For everyone that feels they’ve said “I’m sorry” too many times
You can never go too far when you can’t come back home again”
Shake It Out- Florence + The Machine
In “Shake It Out,” Florence embraces her inner demons and acknowledges that even though she has her issues, she will rise up again. Without the bad, there is no good and no good without bad. This song is one I turn to when I’m going through it to remind myself that we all have our issues but we can all “shake it out.”
“And I am done with my graceless heart
So tonight I’m going to cut it out and then restart
Because I like to keep my issues drawn
It’s always darkest before the dawn”
Vivir Mi Vida – Marc Anthony
Marc Anthony’s music has a way of getting me on my feet and forgetting my troubles, and “Vivir Mi Vida,” is no exception. This upbeat salsa track reminds us that while there are bad moments, it is a part of life and we need to keep moving and dancing.
“Y para que llorar, pa’ qué (why cry, for what?)
Si duele una pena, se olvida (if something pains us, we can forget it)
Y para qué sufrir, pa’ qué (why suffer, for what?)
Si así es la vida, hay que vivirla la la le (that’s how life is, we have to live it)
Voy a reír, voy a bailar (I’m going to laugh, I’m going to dance)
Vivir mi vida la la la la (I’m going to live my life)
Voy a reír, voy a gozar (I’m going to laugh, I’m going to enjoy it)
Vivir mi vida la la la la” (I’m going to live my life)
Golden – Jill Scott
This was the song that inspired our list. Golden is that feel good song that can always lift you up. It serves to remind you that you are in control of your life and no one can take that from you.
“I’m holding on to my freedom,
Can’t take it from me,
I was born into it,
It comes naturally,
I’m strumming my own freedom,
Playing the god in me,
Representing his glory,
Hope he’s proud of me”