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Monday, September 20, 2010

Indigo Girls ultimate iPod playlist

I'm Lisa Dupre. By day, I'm a program coordinator in alumni relations at Goizueta Business School, but on the side, I do something a bit more exciting: I work on the Indigo Girls official website, and help out with their online social media. You can also say I go to "a lot" of their concerts. I'm a big fan.

It all began in 1996 when my best friend Rick sent me a mix tape of his favorite music. It included a lot of great music, but the track that stood out the most was the first Indigo Girls song I ever heard. It was ironically not written by Amy or Emily, but by Dire Straits.

Regardless, I was blown away and became a fan of their music and inspired by their social activism. Now that it's 2010, mix tapes have pretty much gone away. They've been replaced by iPod playlists. With the Indigo Girls playing Homecoming in less than a week, now is a perfect time to put together a new playlist of their best songs. Here are my favorites:

Rock and Roll Heaven’s Gate is a rock song! When people think of the Indigo Girls they usually think of a folk duo, but this song will get you up and dancing. The song also features Pink on background vocals. At live performances, I have seen both Atlanta’s Trina Meade and Seattle’s Brandi Carlile join in for the Pink vocals. (Despite Our Differences, 2006)

Cold Beer and Remote Control is one of my favorite songs off Come on Now Social. Even though Emily is singing about lack of hope and motivation, it's a catchy tune. We all have days where we just want to hide, and this is the song for that. (Come On Now Social, 1999)

Starkville is a special one for me, because I was in Starkville, MS, the night this song was written. The show was postponed due to rain, and everyone headed back to the only hotel in the area. The song is really about love and missed opportunities, but it will always remind me of that show. (Become You, 2002)

Love of Our Lives is one of the best tracks on the Girls’ latest studio album, Poseidon and the Bitter Bug. Indigo Girls performed on a Cayamo music cruise two years ago. They played this song while we were at sea, and I have many great vacation memories to go along with it. Indigo Girls will be on the 2011 Cayamo Cruise as well. (Poseidon and the Bitter Bug, 2009)

Devotion is the perfect love song. It’s not all hearts and flowers but rather, real-life love. I first heard this song in the Blue Ridge Mountains with some friends. It always reminds me of the fall and good times. (Retrospective, 2000)

Leaving. The Retrospective disc contained two previously unreleased tracks, Devotion and one of my other favorites, Leaving. It makes me feel at home when Emily sings about the Delta sign. (Retrospective, 2000)

Go is a great protest song. It reminds you that anything is possible, as long as you never give up. It was written in part for some high school students in Irmo, SC who had won a contest to have the Indigo Girls play at their school. The show was cancelled due to some of the Indigo Girls’ activism, and the students had a walk out to protest. It reminds you that you are never “too old to care or too young to count.” (Come On Now Social, 1999)

Least Complicated is a great sing-along song. It reminds me of spring when anything is possible and makes people think of their days in school. (Swamp Ophelia, 1994)

Romeo & Juliet was the first Indigo Girls song I ever heard. Even though it is a cover of a Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits) song, Amy sings it with more intensity than I have ever heard. (Rites of Passage, 1992)

Ghost. I can’t hear this song without thinking of the Indigo Girls Project, a collaboration between Indigo Girls and the Atlanta Ballet. This was performed twice for a run of six shows each a few years ago. I attended all of the performances and saw something new each time. It was hard to choose between watching the Girls play and the dancers dance. Ghost was one of the most memorable performances from this cool project. (Rites of Passage, 1992)

Let Me Go Easy is a sad song set to a happy tune. Even though it will always remind me of a phone call from friends telling me their dog had passed away, I can’t help but love this song and think of Lolly. (Rarities, 2005)

Language or the Kiss is probably my favorite Emily song. The lyrics are so descriptive that you can just feel yourself looking through the window. I’ve only heard this live once, but I always hope to hear it again. (Swamp Ophelia, 1994)

Driver Education was first a solo song for Amy on one of her solo CDs, Prom, but hearing it redone as an Indigo Girls song was like hearing it for the first time. Emily’s harmonies added another layer to an already fun song. (Amy Ray - Prom, 2005, Indigo Girls - Poseidon and the Bitter Bug, 2009)

Mystery. Again, one of the most descriptive songs Emily’s ever written. When this is played live, you can hear a pin drop in the quiet parts. It’s a song that pops up on a lot of fans' favorite lists. (Swamp Ophelia, 1994)

Blood and Fire is one of the few songs I haven’t been lucky enough to hear in all of the shows I have seen. It is a real rarity, but I think it’s one of Amy’s best songs. I hope to be in the audience if she decides to play it again. (Indigo Girls, 1989)

Galileo usually signals the end of the show. It’s such a fun song and it is great when the audience joins in, but I'm always sad to hear it start, because I know that the show has come to an end. (Rites of Passage, 1992)

Wild Horses. This song was written by The Rolling Stones, but has been covered countless times. My favorite version includes guest vocals by Michelle Malone, a Decatur native who is sometimes known as the “third Indigo Girl." This song is a signature finale whenever Michelle plays with the Girls. It’s definitely one of my favorite ways to end a show. (Staring Down the Brilliant Dream, 2010)

-- Lisa Dupre, alumni relations program coordinator, Goizueta Business School


  1. That's a great compilation! I may grab those songs, in that order, and burn a disc!!

  2. Awesome list, Lisa!
    I'm even more excited about seeing the Indigo Girls on Saturday now (wasn't sure that was possible).
    Thanks! Lynda