People are making coronavirus and quarantine themed Spotify playlists

coronavirus spotify covid-19

  • The novel coronavirus outbreak has forced thousands into
    mandatory or elective quarantine.
  • Online, many are seeking ways to cope with growing anxiety,
    boredom, and isolation. 
  • Numerous virus-inspired Spotify playlists have appeared on the
    platform in recent weeks. 
  • Visit
    Insider’s homepage for more stories

As thousands adjust to life in quarantine, a plethora of
coronavirus outbreak-inspired playlists are popping up on Spotify.
With names like “melodic future bass songs that make me forget
about coronavirus,” these playlists provide a surprisingly intimate
look at how people across the globe are feeling about and coping
with the ongoing crisis. 

update: we’re listening to these in the
office and it’s bops on bops

— lucy ford⁷ (@lucyj_ford)
March 12, 2020


Carlotta Freni — who works in the music industry and has lived
in Milan, Italy for 13 years — created her quarantine playlist

“Songs for Pandemics”
after the Lombardy region’s lockdown
began on February 23. That lockdown now includes the entire
country, as the number of infections and deaths

“To me, music is the primary way to communicate feelings and to
seal a particular moment or history inside our memories,” Freni
wrote in an email interview. 

Dubbing the 23rd “the day of the Italian rage at the
supermarkets,” Freni recalls going to the nearest supermarket to
photograph the empty shelves and experiencing for the first time
“the fear and the disorder of a scared crowd.” The following day,
she created the playlist and used one of the ghostly supermarket
photos as a cover image. 

“I was conscious that we had to stay at home in order to prevent
a sanitary disaster,” Freni wrote in an email interview. “So I
decided to create a playlist for my friends, in order to share with
them some good sounds and vibes, and let the day flow.”

To be faithful to this “unique period in our recent history,”
Freni decided to include an eclectic mix of new releases from the
past few weeks, songs by artists who canceled gigs in Milan to
prevent contagion, songs about crisis, and “songs from the past”
that “let the listeners both dance and meditate.” Lastly, Freni
added, she tried to put listeners in a good mood with a playlist
that is equally joyful and melancholic. Her friends loved it. 

“I’m happy to have contributed to their wellness in a very
simple way,” Freni wrote. 

The most popular playlist to emerge from the outbreak, however,
“COVID-19 Quarantine Party,”
which boasted more than 35,000
followers before its name was deleted after Insider contacted the
creator for comment. The tracklist conveys a sense of resigned
acceptance with titles like “The Kids Don’t Stand a Chance” by
Vampire Weekend, “You Sound Like You’re Sick” by The Ramones, and
“Time Is Running Out” by Muse. 

“Coronavorus Hand Washing Playlist”
created by user jenntrev,
on the other hand, serves a functional purpose. All 51 songs on the
playlist have “a chorus/pre-chorus of at least 20 seconds for you
to sing or hum (either aloud or in your head) while washing your
hands to ensure you meet the handwashing guidelines set forth by
the CDC.” 

But the prevailing attitude expressed through these playlists is
one of growing civil unrest co-mingled with a need for distraction
and escapism. Take, for example, this
“*corona virus intensifies*” playlist
put together by user
chrislax123, which bounces from optimistic tracks like Taylor
Swift’s “Shake It Off” and Ed Sheeran’s “I Don’t Care” to songs
that hint at darker and more conflicted emotions, like “Stressed
Out” by Twenty One Pilots and “The Age of Worry” by John

That said, if you’re too anxious for Top 40 hits, user
Listen2Listed has you covered with
“Coronavirus beats to chill/hide in my room to,”
a playlist
dedicated to soothing, lo-fi hip hop. 

Spotify did not immediately respond for comment. 

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People are making coronavirus and quarantine themed Spotify playlists