DeRosa's Belmont Stakes playlist

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Ed DeRosa

June 3rd, 2015

One of the casualties of readily available music streaming services such as Spotify is my Big Event music play list. Even once music went mainstream digital via iTunes it was fun to cultivate a play list and download it to a CD or (eventually) stream it through the phone.

Now with millions of tracks on demand, that cultivation is at times daunting and other times redundant. It’s difficult to put time into a play list knowing that at any moment I can switch over to an artist/album/playlist the might better suit my mood.

But I wanted to make a playlist for this year’s Belmont Stakes. It will be a special moment if American Pharoah wins to become the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978, and music can help the memories linger for a long time.

I did a play list for the 2005 Preakness Stakes, and to this day, hearing “Mr. Brightside” by the Killers evokes memories of that first bite of pizza from the Pimlico Race Course grandstand. I want that for this Belmont Stakes, too, so without further adieu here’s the list:

  1. “To Us, the Beautiful” by Franz Nikolay
  2. “Walk Like an Egyptian” by Jukebox the Ghost
  3. “Brill Bruisers” by The New Pornographers
  4. “Break Ya Neck” by Busta Rhymes
  5. “6 Foot 7 Foot” by Lil Wayne
  6. “No Flex Zone” by Karmin Watsky
  7. “Go Hard (La.La.La)” by Kreayshawn
  8. “The Distance” by Cake
  9. “Desperately Wanting” by Better Than Ezra
  10. “Better Days” by Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros
  11. “Still Want You” by Brandon Flowers
  12. “The River is Wild” by The Killers
  13. “Like a River Runs” by Bleachers
  14. “Hurricane” by MisterWives
  15. “Third Eye” by Florence + The Machine
  16. “Stay Lucky” by Gaslight Anthem
  17. “Lexicon” by Lunavelis
  18. “Joke About Jamaica” by The Hold Steady

Some songs, like the lead-off track, are on here because of the lyrics. E.g. “To us, the beautiful and those who disagree: may their eyes fall out. We all want something beautiful; I want something to scream and shout about, and I got something to make you shout out loud.”

Others—such as “The Distance” and “Desperately Wanting”—resonated in part because of the title, and others—like that hip hop run from tracks 4-7—because I want to get pumped up.

Happy Belmont Stakes, everyone!