In January 2019, I stepped down as executive director of Duke Performances after a dozen years at the helm. I had the good pleasure, during my term, to work with a large number of exceptionally talented people — it seemed important to find a way to continue engaging with them. At the same time, I started to think more deeply about the way streaming music — sheer volume of songs, it’s incredibly portability, and its algorithmic flair — had on the way we listen. Songs for Listening is a small project aimed toward ongoing engagement. I’ve asked friends and colleagues to provide me with a list of 3 to 5 songs that feel urgent, beautiful, and deserving of deeper listening — songs that they’ve dug into (or, that've dug into them) over recent days, weeks, and months. My investment is to provide a platform for folks to participate in more careful listening. It's a small experiment, we'll see how it shakes out.