House Music.

By: Jen Shoop

The other week, I went over to a girlfriend’s house for a glass of wine, and she was playing classical music throughout her house the entire time we were there. At some point, I must have mentioned it, and she shared that she, her three siblings, and her parents have the same channel — Classic FM Nederland — playing at all times in their respective homes. (They are Dutch.) She’ll sometimes be on a call with her brother or mom and hear an echo of the music in her own home across the line!

How sweet is that?

I loved both the shared tradition (“it’s just the way it’s done,” was her shrugging reply) and the way it binds her, temporally, with her loved ones, even if they’re spread across the globe.

Do you have house music you keep on at all times? What is it, and why?

We were spoiled by our first home, which was wired for Sonos speakers in nearly every room. I loved the way I could drift from the kitchen to our primary bedroom to the family room and hear the same thing: we were enveloped in music. It was a killer way to set a mood. In our new home, we use Apple HomePods to achieve a somewhat similar effect (you can snyc what’s playing across any Apple device), but regardless of technical set-up, we have rarely in our married life together gone more than an hour or two without music on. Our house music is decidedly less consistent than my girlfriend’s, though we do group music by time of day.

Morning music is old Bonnie Raitt (her first few albums are incredible), Fleetwood Mac, John Mayer (I know he is triggering for some people but I find him to be one of the most clever lyricists of our time), classical piano (Chopin and Beethoven especially), orchestral music (the children like The Four Seasons and Beethoven’s Fifth because they have books about those symphonies, but we will also play Peter and the Wolf and The Nutcracker during the month of December), and — when the children are really in a funk — meditation sounds, with the intended purpose of calming.

Midday music is often balladic country. I love Kacey Musgraves and am having a major dalliance with Miranda Lambert’s Palomino and Marfa Tapes albums, but we also adore Willie Nelson, Sturgill Simpson, Tim McGraw, Randy Travis. And I live for the old Chicks albums. Sometimes we’ll play Toots and the Maytals if we’re in a chill/happy mood or Brandy Carlile if we’re in our feelings.

Evening music is a tale of two personalities: we are either heavy into pop or ease on by with jazzy classics. On the pop front, we love listening to full albums, end to end, as arranged on the album itself, by a particular artist. We’ve been into Carly Rae Jepsen’s most recent album, “The Loneliest Time,” Harry Styles’ “Harry’s House” (ofc), and we absolutely never tire of Bruno Mars’ “24K Magic” album or his collaborative album with Anderson Paak, “An Evening with Silk Sonic” during the pre-dinner/dinner hours. But we will also infinity play off of current favorite singles (Miley Cyrus’ “Flowers,” Adele’s “I Drink Wine”) and songs we just can’t quit (we love Dua Lipa’s “The One” song). And then there’s the whole category of “old pop.” Our children have been on a major Michael Jackson kick lately, so there’s a lot of that, and sometimes we like to listen to 90s hip hop or pop.

If we’re going with a jazzy evening vibe, it’s Frank Sinatra or Tony Bennett, and I think I probably hold a world record for listening to Tony’s “The Silver Lining: The Songs of Jerome Kern” album. It’s more piano bar than “old standards,” which is my preference. I discovered it during the depths of the pandemic in NYC and have still not tired of it — it’s like a warm, soothing blanket.

Car music is a whole other beast, and also dependent on time of day and mood. Mr. Magpie has even more eclectic music tastes than I do, and he’ll play everything from Stromae to Surfaces to Nirvana to Weezer to Jacques Brel to MorMor. It’s always a wild ride.

How about you? What’s your house music?

Post Scripts.

+A playlist for chores.

+What do you eat when your fridge is bare?

+What would your last meal be?

Shopping Break.

+Love these high-rise utility pants — only $30 at the moment. Also, do I need this black denim jacket?! It look SO chic!

+Such a fun and festive pattern for a spring dress.

+Cute $12 boxy tee — love it in the sand stripe.

+Such a cute everyday spring crossbody — great for moms who want to be hands-free. Ideal playground bag! More cute spring bags here.

+This embroidered shirt dress is gorgeous and only $120.

+Hokas in pretty new spring colors.

+People are saying this Neutrogena foundation is comparable to the industry elite standard — Giorgio Armani’s formula.

+Spring office organization goals! (More office decor inspo here.)

+This pretty spring skirt reminds me of one I have from Horror Vacui. Gorgeous.

+I know I just did a shoe roundup, but this jacquard floral (under $100!) is SO fun and unexpected with white jeans / a white dress.

+This book feels relevant to the conversation we were having about staying on top of household admin.

+This neutral cap reminds me of some of the styles from Sporty and Rich. Love the vibe. Pair with a monochromatic leggings/tank set.

+This bow clutch is SO me.

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10 thoughts on “House Music.

  1. That is so funny! I had to read ‘Classic FM Nederland’ twice: I live in NL and have this on quite often too. How nice to have a bit of home close by through the good ol’ radio.

  2. I love talking about music! It’s funny — at our house, we really listen to this one freeform radio station at least 70% of the time (WFMU out of Jersey City — it’s a truly amazing station with wonderful DJs who play an extremely eclectic mix of music. Two of my favorite shows are on Thursday mornings and Sunday mornings — French-inflected indie/alternative and reggae, respectively)

    The other 30% of the time we’re streaming other radio stations from around the world or listening to records on vinyl. We both use Spotify (and I use Apple Music as well; can’t give it up) but I find that I mostly listen to my own playlists, etc. only if I’m working solo, or if I’m out for a walk/bike ride/drive/etc. I have a very specific way of building playlists: I create one for each quarter of the year and then create a big yearly playlist right before New Year’s Eve, to recap my favorite songs of the year. I have playlists like this dating back to 2006 and I love that I have the ability to queue up music that can channel the emotions/feelings of each of the last 16 years (!!)


    1. Your calendar-based approach to playlist creation/curation is so interesting! I bet you have such a fascinating log of your life/moods/interests because of it! Very cool!


  3. Music in my house varies too…usually it’s classic rock a playlist of Rolling Stones, Grateful Dead, Kansas, America, CCR, Journey, Def Leppard, Hall & Oats, Steely Dan, Van Morrison etc.
    Sometimes the hubs will have 40’s jazz on YouTube playing through the TV…sometimes it’s playlists from Spotify…and if it’s Friday some gold old fashioned Dua Lipa pop…lately it’s been my friends band Snacks they played in DC last week…so good great alternative rock and of course always some Weezer Third Eye Blind 90’s alternative rock of my teenage years…and some old school hip hop 90’s

    1. Love the diversity!! I agree, we go in and out of moods/times of day/seasons of year that call for different music styles. Summer we get much more into country, for example.


  4. This is so thought provoking! We decidedly have no house music…as my husband and I strongly disagree on music choices (he only likes hip hop, I like lots of things but prefer deep house music). Growing up we had house music all the time! My mom and dad love rock, folk, and new age. My parents just restored beautiful wood cabinet stereos which live in the family room and now their house is constantly enveloped by whatever’s playing. Now I’m inspired to try to solidify some house music for us!

    1. Hi! I’m sure you can find some common ground!! Even something unexpected and fringe-y for both of you…like reggae? 90s pop?


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