A rainy playlist for a parched New England

Actor and dancer Gene Kelly in the 1952 film "Singin' In The Rain." (Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)
Actor and dancer Gene Kelly in the 1952 film "Singin' In The Rain." (Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)

We don't need to tell you New England desperately needs rain. Brown, crunchy lawns and stressed out plants have been spreading across the landscape for weeks. Our hearts go out to the farmers struggling to produce crops in ongoing, oven-like, parched conditions. This relentless drought and blistering heat got us fantasizing about massive rain dances. Then we shifted to rain songs. Here's a playlist inspired by a dear, earth-loving friend who put together her own compilation. We hope these tunes will help cool you down as temperatures rise. Maybe if we all listen together, Mother Nature will hear our collective cry for more than a little rain to fall like tears from on high. Enjoy, stay hydrated, be safe and take care of each other.

The Who, 'Love, Reign O'er Me'

Piano mixed with the sounds of rain falling kick off this classic Who song from their rock opera “Quadrophenia.” Close your eyes and you can almost feel the cooling drops on your skin.

The Temptations, 'I Wish It Would Rain'

The opening of this song hits home with the line, “Sunshine, blue skies, please go away.” Maybe you've been saying the same thing day after day?

The Beatles, 'Rain'

This is actually the first song that popped into my head while dreaming up this playlist. Listening to it again made me feel optimistic that soon the weather — and all of us — will be just fine. Fingers crossed.

Missy Elliott, 'The Rain'

Such a rich, cool tune. Although I currently do not agree with Missy Elliott's sentiment, “I can't stand the rain against my window.”

Prince, 'Purple Rain'

At this point, I don't think we care what color the rain is, as long as it arrives soon to quench the earth.

Led Zeppelin, 'The Rain Song'

Robert Plant's final line in this languid ballad keeps turning through my mind: “Upon us all a little rain must fall...”

Gene Kelly, 'Singin' in the Rain'

When the rain finally falls, I suggest we all dash out of our houses to dance and sing in the storm like the iconic characters in this beloved 1952 movie. I mean, why not?

The Eurythmics, 'Here Comes the Rain Again'

Wow. Well, this song takes me back to when I saw The Eurythmics at Jones Beach in the '80s. I remember hearing the ocean lapping in the distance and belting out the lyrics, “Here comes the rain, falling on my head like a memory, falling on my head like a new emotion.”

Garbage, 'Only Happy When It Rains'

It's funny how many songs about rain are actually about love and heartbreak, including this angsty 1995 breakthrough track from Garbage. For kicks, you could take a listen to Metallica's cover.

Judith Weir, 'The Welcome Arrival of Rain'

British composer Judith Weir said this piece was inspired by monsoon season in India, “when aridity is pierced by life-giving rain; and humans, animals and vegetation revel in sudden activity and fertility.” Sounds amazing, right?

Selena Gomez & The Scene, 'A Year Without Rain'

Another monsoon makes an appearance in Selena Gomez's poppy song, “A Year Without Rain.” And it's another one about heartbreak.

Creedence Clearwater Revival, 'Have You Ever Seen the Rain'

The question posed in this tune rings so true: "I wanna know, have you ever seen the rain coming down on a sunny day?" Hopefully, we'll be able to answer "yes" very soon.

The Doors, 'Riders on the Storm'

More quenching rain and thunder can be heard in Jim Morrison's spectral classic. Oh, to be riding on a storm right now!

Andrea Shea Correspondent, Arts & Culture
Andrea Shea is a correspondent for WBUR's arts & culture reporter.



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