Sometimes, slipping on a pair of earphones and escaping into the perfect playlist is the only cure for life's woes. It's especially satisfying when the playlist is packed with songs that are freeing, practically inviting to retreat into the music. Here are ten toe-tapping songs that capture just that:
1. "Freedom" by Pharrell
Sure, Pharrell is a mega-producer, responsible for hits like Justin Timberlake's Rock Your Body, Gwen Stefani's Hollaback Girl, and Nelly's Hot in Here, but, increasingly, his own music is grabbing the spotlight. With Freedom, Pharrell's signature sound comes together to produce a tune that feels truly timeless. It's a rythmic reminder that we're all after the same thing: freedom.
2. "Me & Bobby McGee" by Janis Joplin
Joplin was dead by the time Me & Bobby McGee hit the top of the U.S. singles charts in 1971, and it's shame because no other song was able to capture the free spiritedness of the seventies quite as well. Essentially about the relationship between two drifters, Me & Bobby McGee is an athem for those of us called to the open road.
3. "Young, Wild & Free" by Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa
"So what?" That's the question at the heart of Young, Wild & Free, the soundtrack to many summers spent laying by the pool, hanging out with friends, and experiencing ultimate freedom in the form of an empty "To Do" list.
4. "I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free" by Nina Simone
Simone's meditation on life as an African American during the civil rights movement is less of a song about freedom, and more of a song about the lack thereof. Simone herself became an icon during the movement, using her powerful voice, and equally powerful lyrics, to rally those fighting for equality.
5. "Break Free" by Ariana Grande
Even though she's America's second most-hated celebrity, Ariana Grande's Break Free is pupe pop perfection. It's a dance anthem perfect for the first Friday night out after a bad breakup. After all, what's more freeing than a night on the dancefloor with your closest friends?
6. "I Want to Break Free" by Queen
Is there anyone more free spirited than Queen's frontman Freddie Mercury? Didn't think so. With I Want to Break Free, Mercury sings what we're all thinking at the end of the work day: get me out of here.
7. "Free Your Mind" by En Vougue
Need a confidence boost? Just play Free Your Mind by En Vogue, it's a powerful combination of R&B and Rock n' Roll that reinforces self worth, challenges social constructs and shuts down those who might be getting in your way. Haters to the left, please.
8. "Freedom Song" by Jason Mraz
Mraz' Freedom Song is able to capture that certain sense of freedom one encounters when everything just falls into place. It's about the good vibes that are congruent with living in the moment and enjoying what's in front of you.
9. "Freedom! '90" by George Michael
By the early nineties, George Michael was a solidified superstar. Despite his superstardom, Michael lets a hand full of the world's most famous supermodels share the spotlight in Freedom! '90's music video.
10. "Redemption Song" by Bob Marley & The Wailers
Bob Marley took a stab at big corporations, atomic energy and a myriad of other issues in Redemption Song, one of the iconic musician's final songs. Don't let the regae overtones confuse you, this songs encourages its listener to do anything but relax.
Editor's Note: Follow The Liberty Project on Spotify.