It’s that time of year again — spring break. Regardless of your plans, everyone needs a playlist to soundtrack this week-long respite from classes. Of course, DJs will be busy playing “Caroline” and *insert Chainsmokers track here* on repeat, but for more adventurous audiophiles, the music world is teeming with diverse tracks perfect for spring break. Here are a few of those tunes, coupled with a handy guide to help you determine which ones might tickle your fancy.
“I Know There’s Gonna Be (Good Times),” Jamie xx feat. Young Thug and Popcaan
WHO IT’S FOR: Everyone. This is the quintessential spring break song; British electronic artist Jamie xx provides the reggaetón-flavored beat while mumble-rap maestro Young Thug gives it a shot of joyous adrenaline. Whether you’re sitting by the beach or throwing a casual party, this track will supply the good times.
“Slide,” Calvin Harris feat. Frank Ocean and Migos
WHO IT’S FOR: Beachgoers that find themselves disillusioned with pop radio’s formula-driven sound, but who still want a wavy, silk-smooth electro-funk beat perfect for a sun-soaked setting.
“Front & Center,” Joey Bada$$
WHO IT’S FOR: Do you want a shuddering, cataclysmic trap beat guaranteed to bust some speakers? How about a sample of the theme song from Netflix’s epic drug saga “Narcos?” Does charmingly ham-fisted Spanglish sound kind of fun to listen to? If you didn’t answer “yes” to all three of these questions, then I’m not quite sure what you do like, but I guess this isn’t for you.
WHO IT’S FOR: People looking for a trio of sisters to inspire them with perfectly polished soft-pop teeming with influences from the past three decades. That may sound oddly specific, but you are all looking for this. You just don’t know it yet. Trust me.
“What’s That Perfume That You Wear?” Jens Lekman
WHO IT’S FOR: Those thoughtful souls that want to meditate on how something as simple as a smell can trigger ruminations of a love lost without ending the steel drum dance party.
“Paper Planes,” M.I.A
WHO IT’S FOR: The airy beat and simple chorus of this immortal jam make it the ultimate spring break singalong, inspiring listeners everywhere to shout about popping caps (yes, the bullet kind) and getting paid.
“Feel Like We Only Go Backwards,” Tame Impala
WHO IT’S FOR: 1970s rock geeks that are curious about what kind of glorious sound is made by combining a voice like John Lennon’s with hazy psych-rock and groovy backbeats.
“Talking Backwards,” Real Estate
WHO IT’S FOR: Indie fans who like the warm vibe of Tame Impala but want to substitute that tripped-out psychedelia for a calmer take on soft guitar pop.
“Redbone,” Childish Gambino
WHO IT’S FOR: Funk aficionados that are still reeling from the loss of Prince and need a new artist with a crooning falsetto and a strangely alluring look to put some stank in their playlist. Also, those looking to study up on the next Lando Calrissian.
“Am I Wrong,” Anderson .Paak feat. Schoolboy Q
WHO IT’S FOR: Dancers that are frankly sick of trap beats and want some bubbly hip hop complete with a driving beat, 1980s-inspired horns, and a great guest verse from Schoolboy Q to drag the song into this century.
“Demons,” The National
WHO IT’S FOR: The people having a terrible spring break that just need to stop the fun music, turn on a depressing song, and wallow in their sorrow for a couple minutes.
WHO IT’S FOR: Those looking to remove “One Dance” from their playlists and update to a newer Drake jam, complete with world-music vibes and an echoey, mellow ambiance. Ignore that early break in the music and enjoy this chilled dance track.
“Swimming Pools (Drank),” Kendrick Lamar
WHO IT’S FOR: Responsible patrons that don’t want to stop the party, but also want to make sure that people are aware of the dangerous effects of extreme alcohol consumption.
WHO IT’S FOR: Just listen to that beat. It’s pretty obvious what people will be doing once this slinky jam comes on.
“Hold Up,” Beyoncé
WHO IT’S FOR: Women looking to get rid of that beat, take center stage and show the men that they are a force to be reckoned with. Destroying car windows with a bat is not recommended, but would definitely help get the point across.
Listen to the whole playlist here: