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Welcome to Songs for Listening, a curated site for daily playlists from musicians, agents, managers, writers, scholars, and programmers.

05-02-19 | Songs for Listening | David Kyuman Kim

05-02-19 | Songs for Listening | David Kyuman Kim

David Kyuman Kim, Professor of Religious Studies and American Studies at Connecticut College, picked tunes for Thursday, May 2 at Songs for Listening. David is currently a Visiting Scholar at the Annenberg School at Penn, and has taught at Harvard, Brown, and Union Theological Seminary. Published widely on religion and public life, political theory, and the Asian American religious experience, David is author of Melancholic Freedom: Agency and the Spirit of Politics. He’s served as Senior Advisor to the Social Science Research Council’s Program on Religion and the Public Sphere and was also Editor-at-Large of The Immanent Frame, the SSRC’s blog on secularism, religion and the public sphere. With David Dorfman Dance, David serves as creative consultant and scholar-in-residence.

David is co-convener of the The Love-Driven Politics Collective, a group of scholars, artists, and social justice activists dedicated to responding to the political evil, acrimony, anger, and cynicism of our times by cultivating a common politics animated by compassion, generosity, and mercy. In wide-demand as a public speaker and praised by Cornel West as “the leading philosopher of religion and culture of his generation." David is developing a new show called HighWire that will address the moral challenges of our times through live-format dialogues with many of our leading artists, activists and thought leaders. HighWire will begin airing later this year.

Here's David's picks with his annotations:

'As' by Stevie Wonder
"What can you say? Stevie is a musical genius here he seamlessly twins the fates of love and hope, of joy and dreams. This is an anthem to the challenge and triumph that the commitment to love and hope affords us."

Did you know that true love asks for nothing
Her acceptance is the way we pay
Did you know that life has given love a guarantee
That last through forever
Another day

'Both Sides Now' by Joni Mitchell
"More than an incantation of wistfulness & regrets, Joni’s song is a 'true blue' of spiritual and emotional maturity. It’s a praise song to hard won wisdom, of how we burnish the soul through living triumphs and disappointments."

'Landslide' by Fleetwood Mac
"We live love in time. And living love in time can bring magnificence, but it is by definition fated to diminish, and yes, die. The heart yearns for a time past and in so doing feels that ache and break of the future that brings it all down."

'Des Baches Wiengelied' from 'Die Schone Mullerin' by Schubert, performed by Sanford Sylvan
"I played the recording of 'Die Schoene Mullerin' by the great American baritone (recently passed) Sanford Sylvan for my older son Noah’s bedtime and nap time when he was a baby hundreds if not thousands of times. Each song is a witness to wonder and youth, and the tone and tenor of the entire cycle is one of loving kindness ending with this entreaty to 'Good rest, good rest' ('Gute ruh, gute ruh'). It’s what we wish our children as they drift to sleep."

'A Love Supreme, Pt. IV: Psalm' by John Coltrane “This is the 20th century’s great symphony of love & freedom. The spiritual intensity and integrity of Coltrane’s melodic explorations and inveterate praise is unparalleled in creative expression. He takes us through his journey of humility, confusion, and redemption, and in so doing lays forth gratitude for a divine love and grace that offers us hope in and for our all-too-human condition."

'As' by Stevie Wonder from 'Songs in the Key of Life'
'Both Sides Now' by Joni Mitchell from 'Clouds'
'Landslide' by Fleetwood Mac from 'Landslide'
'Des Baches Wiengelied' from 'Die Schone Mullerin' by Schubert, performed by Sanford Sylvan
'A Love Supreme, Pt. IV: Psalm' by John Coltrane from 'A Love Supreme'


05-03-19 | Songs for Listening | Tift Merritt

05-03-19 | Songs for Listening | Tift Merritt

05-01-19 | Songs for Listening | Josh Jackson

05-01-19 | Songs for Listening | Josh Jackson