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What’s fall without the perfect playlist? Typically, when I am procrastinating, I turn to Spotify. My endless playlist options range from a few of my favorite songs to oddly specific titles with perfectly crafted songs to match (i.e., “pov: you’re in a convertible, party dress on, the vibes are immaculate”). 


Rather than simply including my playlists, I want to leave the creativity to you. I’ll give a few tips on creating a “vibe,” along with a few of my current favorite songs. Keep in mind, the tracklist is subjective to the person creating it. There truly are no simpleminded playlist designs. 


Tip #1: Decide On Your Vibe

Are you looking for the perfect study playlist? Maybe it’s those late night drives to clear your head. Perhaps you want to imagine you’re on a beach without a care in the world? Once you pick the mood you want to resonate throughout the playlist, it’s smooth sailing. 

For example, I have both a “Fall: The Relaxed One” and a “Fall: The Hype One” playlist. One is for when I want to relax outside with the breeze blowing through my hair. The latter is for when I am driving with the windows rolled down and yelling lyrics. 

Song Pick #1: Lost by Frank Ocean

This song is universal to both a more chill playlist and a more hyped up playlist. Frank Ocean used a beat that isn’t heavy enough to blare your speakers but is enough to nod your head to. His smooth voice throughout the song makes it the perfect one to sing along to. 

Tip #2: Test-run your song choices

A key to a breathtaking playlist is to have songs that match the vibe you are going for. The most important aspect of this process is to find new music, which can often be easier said than done. I go about this by finding a similar playlist to my own and scrolling through those songs. To test-run them, I follow my 10-20-10 rule; I listen to the song's first ten seconds, the middle twenty seconds, and the last ten seconds. If the song seems to match the vibe of my playlist, I’ll  add it! I’ll repeat this process by scrolling through other playlists and even some of my own. 

Song pick #2: Subterranean Homesick Blues (Bob Dylan cover) by The Lumineers ft. Andrew Bird

I cannot speak highly enough of this song. The Lumineers cover of this song offers a heavier feel than the original song, and utilizes the band’s incredible acoustics, an essential sound to their brand. Lead singer Wesley Shultz’s smooth voice offers rougher undertones in this song, creating a rock/folk vibe. Go listen to it!

Tip #3: Find the perfect album cover

The perfect album cover can make or break a playlist. If you’re creating on Spotify, open the app on your laptop or desktop and upload a cover photo there. I often find mine on Pinterest by searching keywords such as “fall,” “glamour,” or “blue.” This can help to organize your playlists and create the perfect tone. 

Happy listening!

Anna Birk

Ohio U '23

Anna Birk is a third year journalism news and information student at the E.W Scripps School of Journalism. Anna is a Promise Scholar, writer for HerCampus OU and Copy Editor for VARIANT Magazine. In her personal life, she is an avid lover of coffee, sustainable fashion and music. She loves learning new styling tips to help the environment and economy. Check out her Pinterest or Instagram (@annaebirk) or personal twitter account - @theannabirk!
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