What’s the Last Song You Want to Hear?

During our time at Boston Calling, we asked all of the artists an important question: “what is the last song you would want to hear?” The answers ranged from the sublime to… well, the really, really ridiculous. Take a look at what some of our favorite music-makers would like to hear as they ring down the curtain:

“If the apocalypse comes for us all, ‘I Wish I Knew How it Would Feel to Be Free’ by Nina Simone.”
~Kevin Morby


“Oh man. What do I want to listen to? Hm. Wow. If like you’re talking with the big wave coming… Holy Crow. Maybe ‘Get Down On Me’ by B4-4, which you guys I’m sure haven’t heard of because they were only a smash hit in Canada. But if you look this video up, I can guarantee it’ll be one of the strangest things in your life… I can sing a bit if you want?”
~ Mac DeMarco


“The last song I’d want to hear if I knew I was going to hear if I knew I was going to die in this moment would be Bjork’s ‘All is Full of Love.’ I think if I were placed in that state of having to face my untimely demise, I would like to be reminded that all is full of love and everything’s okay.”
~ Mitski


“That’s a tough one. I’d do ‘Shine a Light’ by The Rolling Stones. It seems like a death song. A peaceful death song.”
~ Travis Shettel, Piebald


“If I knew the world was going to end, I’d probably listen to Ray Charles… Man, just anything by Ray Charles. Then I’ll be ready to go.”
~ Joshua Ostrander, Mondo Cozmo


“I would want to hear Leonard Cohen’s ‘Suzanne’ or Gillian Welch playing ‘The Revelator.’ Something classy, you know.”
~ Tim Showalter, Strand of Oaks


“The last song I would ever want to listen to? I’ll flip that question a little bit… I usually tell people that when I die, I want them to play this Ronnie Lane record called ‘Anymore for Anymore’ at my funeral.”
~ MC Taylor, Hiss Golden Messenger


“What do I want to say? [That’s a] not exactly easy first round, you know, music journalism 101 type of question… going into bonus round, advanced level, extrapolations here, by asking what is the last song I want to hear before I keel over, that’s it. Before I’m wiped out… The last thing I want to hear. This is not a question that I have not considered. This is a question, actually, that I consider anytime I write a song, so… [laughs]. And particularly with our next record that’s coming out, in September… somebody that I follow on Twitter, somebody named Sophia Benoit, I don’t know who she is, but she is very funny. She wrote the other day, something like ‘I can’t stop laughing, thinking about ‘Mambo Number 5’ playing as the world ends.’ I thought she was talking about this Perez Prado thing, this Mambo from the 50’s, but actually I hadn’t realized that there’s also a 90s hit by some guy that samples that song [hums the sample]. Anyway, they both kind of have the same lighthearted…and, I was like, yeah. Exactly. EXACTLY! That’s what we think about every time we make a song, every time we make a record, is – I mean, I’m not saying I want to hear my own music, I mean, please. But I’m just saying that’s kind of the feeling we’re going for. What would express both the– the idea of dying encapsulates– I mean, I haven’t personally tried it, but it encapsulates kind of every emotion you can think of. You know, you’re grateful that you had been alive. You’re sad it’s over. You’re probably… [it’s] not implausible that you’d be angry for the reason that you’re seeing your demise. You might find it absurd… Or the idea of confusion. I mean, you think of people say their life flashes before their eyes, it’s this idea of just this blur of memories that are maybe out of order and don’t necessarily turn into a Hollywood wrapped-up story. It’s just a kind of fragmented jumble of everything that happened in your life, which adds up to only that. Just whatever it was. That kind of fragmented thing, it’s another thing we’re always going for…. No, no, no, none of that sad stuff. No way. Last thing I want to hear is that sad stuff, no. ‘Mambo Number 5.’ [laughs]”
~ Greg Saunier, Deerhoof