Our 2017 Thanksgiving playlist

We’ve compiled a list of tunes fit for all of your turkey day feels.

The candied carrots are steamy and sweet, nestled in your grandmother’s porcelain bowl on the table beside the stuffing, roasted Brussels sprouts, oversized turkey and the obligatory canned cranberry sauce. Cloth napkins form small tents on each plate, and there’s a little bubbly in every glass. And yet there’s something missing.

For a complete Thanksgiving experience, music is a must. We reached out to local record store staff, booking managers and musicians to develop a well-crafted collection of tunes designed to complement the meal and the post-meal cleanup session.

Enjoy their selections and read about why the music is meaningful to them, below:

“Rose Hip November” by Vashti Bunyan
“After company has departed and dessert has been put away, Vashti Bunyan’s ‘Rose Hip November’ is a lovely song to rest your eyes with as it’s gently played in the now-quiet living room. The entire album could be heard during this post-Thanksgiving repose, but this song is particularly fitting.” –Garin Pappas, Right On! Records

“Autumn Leaves” by Cannonball Adderley
“This is a very special record for me and makes its way out of my collection every fall/winter. It’s a great song with a feel that always reminds me of Thanksgiving.  Plus a good jazz record always seems to be the path of least resistance while family/folks are gathered around the table for Thanksgiving.” –Dempsey Hamilton, Mobius Records

“Nila” by Cissa Paz
“This song has a very warm feeling, festive and all-around contentment—perfect for gathering with loved ones and lazing around enjoying the company of each other.” –Nistha Raj, Alexandria musician

“Blood” by The Middle East
“Though interpretations likely vary greatly on the specifics, the song appears to span generations, taking a glance—from a distance—at several lifetimes of joy and loss. Simple and highly affecting, this tune always feels perfectly at place as the weather grows colder.” –Will McCarry, founder of D.C. band Wylder

“Roxanne” by The Police 
“My father loves singing it, and it always makes the family laugh. He met Sting at the University of South Carolina in 1979 at Russell House Ballroom.” –Jack Devine, Tally Ho Theater