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Racer X and I are linked on Spotify. We swap songs with each other and create playlists for each other.

I made this playlist for him last summer. He’s admitted before to being a bit of an east coast snob, especially when it comes to music. I told him east coast music doesn’t even compare to the awesomeness of west coast music. I created this playlist for him as proof.

Racer X was blown away. He loves it and says he still listens to it occasionally. He told me it was even better than Sub Pop compilations, which I took as an incredible compliment. I loved Sub Pop back in the day.

I still listen to this playlist, too. In fact, I was playing it for Hayden last weekend. When I told Hayden I had created this playlist for a friend, highlighting my favorite songs by west coast musicians starting in Bellingham and moving south to San Diego, he was amazed. He said, “Wow, you really know a lot about music.” I told him that I wanted to be a rock journalist a la Lester Bangs in my 20s but missed my calling.



They’re not from Seattle but from Bellingham, which is about an hour north. I discovered this band and this song during my fall 2015 Seattle trip even though they’ve been around since 1987. Oops.

I May Hate You Sometimes: Very Beatles-esque with the vocals harmony. I love the Beatles so I naturally love this song.


I had a big crush on Kurt Cobain and Nirvana is probably what people think of when they hear “Seattle band”.

Love Buzz: Possibly my favorite Nirvana song and on their first album. Heavy fuzzy guitars. Love it!


Definitely a favorite band, up there with the Pixies for me.

Nutshell: One of my all-time favorite songs ever. It really spoke to my 20s angst. Now I have to be in the right mood to listen to it but it’s still so damn awesome. Those guitars! I’ve been attempting to learn this song on guitar but it’s proving to be way above my current ability level.


I wasn’t much of a Pearl Jam fan during the height of grunge. They just weren’t my thing. But their more recent work is pretty damn good.

The Fixer: Off one of their newer albums. It’s strange that I like this song but didn’t like their older stuff. This is the song that made me like Pearl Jam.



Fire Maple Song: This is the song that introduced me to Everclear. I happened across this song before the band made it big and immediately loved it. It’s one of those songs that spoke to my soul from the moment I heard it. It rocked my world! I found out Everclear was playing at a small club near my house soon after discovering this song and was heartbroken that I couldn’t go. I had a term paper due the next day.

Santa Monica: Awesome guitar beat. My 2nd favorite Everclear song.


So American: Portugal the Man is relatively newly discovered band for me. I first heard this song on the radio in early 2013 and instantly fell in love. I played this song for Racer X in his hotel room the night we met. I am in love with the cello!



Cake is from my hometown. I’ve been following them since before they hit it big. My classmate in college was friends with the band and sang their praises. I knew why once I saw them live. They have a characteristic big band sound (lots of horns!) and unusual vocalist. I have seen them about a dozen times in concert… all before they became well-known. I used to see John McCrea, the lead singer, out and about in my neighborhood when I lived in downtown Sacramento. I saw them for the first time since they became superstars this past September at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival in Golden Gate Park. They’re still awesome!

Jolene: My favorite Cake song.

Where Would I Be?: A perfect blend of instruments and beat.



Southbound Pachyderm: Awesome bass guitar, which Primus is famous for. This song reminds me of my last night in Europe. Amsterdam. I was 24 and traveling solo. I thought I was going to die that night (long story) and this is one of the songs that I listened to and focused on on my Walkman (hahaha) on to prevent myself from losing it.


Epic: My favorite song of theirs, by far. Perfection.


Shockingly, TOOL is not on Spotify or else I would have included at least one of their songs. I was a big Tool fan in my 20s.


Fade Into You: Such a pretty song with gorgeous vocals. What’s crazy is that I looked up the lyrics… and all this time I thought it was a love song! Doesn’t sound that way from reading the lyrics….
You live your life, you go in shadows
You’ll come apart and you’ll go black
Some kind of light into your darkness
Colors your eyes with what’s not there


Blood Sugar Sex Magik: Unbelievable guitar. Sexy “fuzzy” slow-driving-beat sound.


Butterfly: I included this song for a couple reasons: 1) It was in the movie Orange County. A bit of Lauren trivia: I used to work at a private school in their after-school program when I was 17. Tom Hanks’ kids went there and were often in the after-school program. Colin Hanks, Tom Hanks’ son, is the main character in the movie Orange County. Damn, I felt old when I saw him as a young adult in that movie!, and 2) Mars and I used to make fun of this song (it’s goofy!) and his nickname for me used to be Crazy Town.


I lived in Orange County for a year so it was only fair I included a local musician. And I felt I needed to populate the playlist with another female vocalist. *blush*


Hella Good:  “Hella” is such a California slang word that I had to include this song. Hahaha. I’m not a big No Doubt fan but this is my favorite song of theirs.



Still Remains: A sweet love song. “If you should die before me, can you ask to bring a friend?” More Lauren trivia: I even included that lyrics clip in my wedding ceremony program.