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Keep Your Chin Up

by The Music Team

Graphics by Deanna Kilma-Rajchel

March is a tough month. Winter is hanging around like a bad memory, midterms are on everyone’s calendar and we all just want spring break to be a month long. The music team knows how you feel, so we made you a playlist of songs to motivate, make you laugh and remind you that you can do it. Spring is just around the corner!

“Elephant” by Tame Impala

This song is a powerful motivator; the guitar groove is simple but engaging and doesn't let up. The marching rhythm pulls you in and keeps you there, and the instrumental breakdown toward the end is irresistible. I think the first lines of the song say it best—you can't listen to it and not feel like an elephant, shaking your big, gray trunk for the hell of it. –Paul Stokes

"Jusfayu (feat. No Wyld)" by Kamau

I'm calling it right now: Kamau will blow up within the next year. His Gorgeous Fortune EP blends hip-hop, pop and a touch of reggae. All six songs are fantastic, but Justfayu is guaranteed to put a smile on your face. The chorus will be stuck in your head for weeks. You have been warned. –Cole Schoneman

"Why Worry" by Set it Off

This song questions worrying, saying it’s not going to solve anything. It’s an anthem about staying positive and focusing on more important things. The lead singer convinces you to relax and look on the brighter side of things. –Karissa Perry

"Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor

An absolute classic, "Eye of the Tiger" has been a staple in any serious motivational playlist. The beat alone is enough to instantly raise a brain-dead student's energy level from zero to 100. This song can serve as a starting point or as a last resort when it comes to studying. Survivor’s name says it all; you can and will survive these midterms if you rise to the challenge. –Taleen Simonian

“Baby Blue” by King Krule “Baby Blue” is easily one of my favorite songs to listen to when I need to focus. The raw guitar chords and chill reverbs create such a hauntingly beautiful effect, one that exudes solitude and tranquility. If walking on a cloud or slow dancing to the sound of pouring rain and thunderstorms could be represented in a song, this would be it. –Melody You

“Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles

Starting with a simple, uplifting ukulele melody and later incorporating background drums and the highly recognizable voices of George Harrison, this song can make anyone smile. The lyrics show that something good will come despite seemingly rough times. –Daniela Rivera

"French Navy" by Camera Obscura

A distraction from the wretched reality of exams, this song suggests the greater issue at hand: love! The unfinished rough draft, the textbook gathering dust in the corner of your desk—none of that matters when you're conflicted with the demanding abstraction that is love. Honest lyrics paired with spunky and constant percussion makes for a perky tune perfect for getting through a time that would otherwise seem bleak. –Rhoda Yun

“The House That Heaven Built” by Japandroids

The fuzzy power chords of the guitar propel singer Brian King’s voice to new heights, making the chorus of “If they try to slow you down/tell them all to go to Hell” even more glorious. While technically a break-up song, there are no traces of retrospection here. This is blow-out-your-headphones-and-scream-it type of music. –Ben Bonadies

“Campus” by Vampire Weekend

Sometimes simply getting out of bed is a struggle, but Ezra Koenig is here to remind you to just pull your shirt on and walk out the door: it’s that easy. The bright, shimmery chords and marching tempo are the perfect pick-me-up before your 8 a.m. Pop in your earbuds, turn on “Campus” and stride along to class with your head held high. –Claire Tran

“FunknRoll” by Prince

The funky beat makes you feel like nothing else exists and takes any stress off your mind. This song gets all the ‘bad funk’ away and brings out a relaxing atmosphere. If you want a funky jam that gets you dancing and motivated, this is the one. –Nicki Hymowitz

“24K Magic” by Bruno Mars

Listening to this song, it’s hard not to move or have your mood lifted. Bruno Mars has done it again with a feel-good anthem that gets people going. The funky tune is undeniably catchy, pushing the listener to match the energy dished out by this Motown mogul. –Georgia Kotsinis

“The Way You Remember Me” by St. Lucia

A good song is one that serves multiple purposes—this is that song. Play it to get you out of bed, to run a little faster, to type that eight-page paper, to take a dance break—really to motivate yourself to do anything at all. –Emma Parkinson

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