In the pandemic, playlists by loved ones and strangers have been not only a major solace, but also a way of not just feeling connected across walls and timezones, but a way of literally being connected. Even when a comrade turns us on to a single song (just now: “1 Thing” by Amerie), they just might be reorganizing the psyhic flow of our day away from doldrums and back towards the revolutionary, whether internal or domestic or international. Similarly, we’ve grown fond of the way Gabriel Jermaine Vanlandingham-Dunn embeds music over his IG stories—a heterodox, synaptic, gutsy way of indicating the emotional relationship between sound and whatever happens to be its “foreground”—, so we wrote to him and invited him to create a playlist for Black Ink.
“What if I did a playlist based around drones/ambient music that gives some good midday energy,” he wrote. “Folk need to unplug, turn off their phones, and fucking rest. Don’t just use your energy to fight, but use it to love, grow, learn.”
This weekend, lie down with Sounds of the High Sun.