Music Monday #9: Ella Treinen

Senior Ella Treinen shares her favorite music that tell some of her favorite stories. Make sure to listen closely!

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June 5, 2019

Hello and happy Music Monday! It’s Ella Treinen here, Managing Editor of On the Record. I can’t wait to share some of my all-time favorites with you. Get comfy, close your eyes, and really listen, because below are songs that tell stories you don’t want to miss!


“Adelaide” by Brendan Abernathy

This song is the type of song you listen to alone, in a coffee shop, deep in thought. With the haunting, yet simple acoustics and smoky vocals of this chill pop song, Brendan Abernathy delivers something completely original. Abernathy explains the story of the song as “a search for identity,” and it may have you doing some self-reflecting as well. Abernathy is a traveling, underground artist with 128 subscribers on his youtube channel who seems to just appreciate music and what it can do for people. On his website, you can request a video-chat with him where he will write you a song in exchange for donations toward the recent coronavirus pandemic.


“Dead Sea” by The Lumineers

I simply had to include a song by my all-time favorite band, The Lumineers. Wesley Schultz wrote this song for the woman who is now his wife — she told him he was her dead sea, meaning he was what kept her afloat. This folk-rock band based in Denver, Colorado never fails to bring grit and honesty to their music, and this song from their very first album is no exception. What a beautiful and creative way to tell someone that you love them. 


“Kanye in My Head” by Mills.

I stumbled across this song while listening to my “Discover Weekly” playlist on Spotify the other day. It’s one of the songs that completely fills you up inside; the kind you can feel in your chest. With an irresistible and wholesome chorus, Mills. brings us what is truly a diamond in the rough. It’s a short little pop song that will make you want to fall in love. Mills. wrote this song in 2018 as a senior in high school, and you can find the music video (a compilation of GoPro footage) on YouTube. If the song didn’t make you smile, the music video surely will. 


“Rich Girl” by Daryl Hall & John Oates

Growing up, my dad was insistent that I become “musically educated,” and it’s no secret that some of the very best music was born before we were. With that being said, I had to throw in at least one oldie. We’re certainly picking things up a notch with Hall and Oates “Rich Girl,” a bop that you will have a lot of trouble resisting the urge to dance to. This song instills a great appreciation for music in me. Based on a true story, Daryl Hall wrote this song about one of the rich and spoiled men who dated his longtime girlfriend, Sara Allen. However, he changed the character to a girl and the first of Hall and Oates US number one hits was born.


“You Are Gold” by The National Parks

I recommend listening to this song on a bad day like it’s written for you. In the chorus, National Parks sings, “You are gold, you are all I see. You are aurum scarce and meant for kings.” It isn’t complicated, but that’s what makes it such a lovely model for the way we should feel about ourselves and the way we should expect to be loved. The National Parks is a 5-member American folk/ pop band from Utah. Their sound is acoustic and relaxed, good for study music or rainy day soundtrack. 


“Chin Up” by Yoke Lore

This song tells a story we don’t hear often. Yoke Lore’s song “Chin Up” is about when a friendship with someone ends, but that’s okay. I think that’s a really important lesson; understanding that you can move forward without someone and still have love for that person. It’s an upbeat indie song with lyrics like, “I wish that you were happy in your skin.” Adrian Galvin is a young alternative singer with even a stage name that tells a story. He described that ‘a yoke’ is something that holds something together while ‘lore’ means a set of stories or a collection of ideas about an event, time, or culture. 


“First Class” by Rainbow Kitten Surprise

For reasons I can’t put my finger on, this song gives me chills almost every time it comes on. I heard it for the first time while driving and it made me want to cry in the middle of an intersection, but not in a sad way. It was just the feeling that you’re experiencing something powerful. It’s a song about when love gets messy and difficult. It’s realistic. I love the roughness and rawness of all of the different elements in this song and would recommend checking out all of Rainbow Kitten Surprise’s 2013 album, Seven and Mary. Rainbow Kitten Surprise is an alternative rock indie band and one of my personal favorites right now.


“Old Eden” by Honeywater

To finish this musical experience on a high note, I’ve saved the best for last. This song has held the top spot on my favorites list for at least three years now. It takes you with it on a journey with its depth, it’s smoothness and authenticity. With lyrics like, “I want love, but I don’t just want love, I want you,” it’s another wholesome love song that differs very much from what we’re used to hearing on the radio. It’s the type of song that will remind you why music is so important to us as we go about creating moments and memories worth holding onto. Honeywater is a folk band featuring well-known actor Amanda Stenberg who stars in “The Hate You Give” and singer/songwriter Zander Hawley.