Hoopla is an online resource you can use from the comfort of your couch. To use it, simply go to the Cedar Rapids Public Library website (crlibrary.org), click on Resources and Services and select Hoopla. Once there you’ll be prompted for your library card. Log in as a Cedar Rapids or Marion resident. You’re now ready to browse thousands of titles.
Music can take us back in time; a song can remind us of the leaves falling as we waited for the bus; an album we played over and over again can pinpoint our memories reminding us of exactly where we were and who we were with. Let our Hoopla collection make some new memories for you or maybe take you back to golden times. Here are my top picks for each self-isolating occasion.
Tunes to Tidy up to
Purging clutter can be cathartic. Now that we’re home, we’re probably cleaning more than usual and having a clean house can really change your outlook. So crack the windows, grab those Clorox wipes, and crank up these tunes!
Regina Spektor- Begin to Hope
Regina Spektor is a Russian Jewish refugee who can tickle the ivories and sing like a classically-trained angel. This album is sometimes irreverent, soulful, and catchy as all get-up. Spektor’s smarts shine through as ever on this one and you’ll probably end up putting most, or at least a few songs on the album on a favorite playlist.
The White Stripes-Elephant
The first time I heard this album was in a music shop where I worked in my hometown. We jammed it on repeat until we couldn’t take it anymore. Sure Seven Nation Army is an obvious pick, but there are so many other gems on this album. You’ll be done with the dishes in no time.
Queen- Greatest Hits Volume 3
We have a couple of albums by Queen in our online collection. They’re a band I know well, but never think to listen to. Well, Freddie and the gang are a great addition to your cleaning regimen. With tracks like “I want to break free,” and “Radio Gaga,” tearing through the laundry will be a breeze.
Tunes to drive to the grocery store to
The Roots-Game Theory
Hands down, this is my favorite Roots album. Rhymes, raps and sick beats sync flawlessly into pure poetry (thank you Black Thought and Questlove!). This album is social, political, and explores the darker side of America in a way that provokes thought and allows for deep reflection. Roll your car windows down, get that fresh air into your lungs and crank this album up!
Team Blur or Oasis? I think you know where I stand here. I’ve followed lead singer Damon Albarn from Blur since the beginning and he’s done some incredible things. It all started with Blur and this album has some tunes you can really jam to on the way back from Target; content because you were able to get toilet paper and Clorox wipes (it’s the little things).
Ry Cooder- Buena Vista Social Club
Buena Vista Social Club is an effort produced by American guitarist Ry Cooder who wanted to record Cuban music of pre-Revolutionary Cuba. This album will have you up and dancing (or at least nodding in agreement while you’re behind the wheel at a red light).
Tunes to reflect to
You’ve cooked, cleaned, worked, binge-watched every show you can. You knew this time would come. You’re at home with your own thoughts. Don’t worry. Check out these wonderful albums that will keep you company and help you make sense of things.
Beach House- Bloom
I once read Beach House referred to as “dream pop,” and I think that’s an apt way to describe this group. Listening to this album is the equivalent of sitting on an East Coast beach, wrapped in a blanket with your drink of choice watching gulls circle and waves crashing. Your soul will thank you for it.
Eddie Vedder- Into the Wild
I’ve been seeing pictures of major cities with pollution-free skylines. It makes me think about the impact humans have had on our environment and if this pause lends an opportunity for real change. This is the soundtrack to the movie Into the Wild, where the main character leaves the “civilized” world for the wild. Highlights on this album include “Rise,” “Society,” and “Guaranteed”. I love you Eddie!
Joni Mitchell- Blue
“I am a lonely painter; I live in a box of paints. I’m frightened by the devil and I’m drawn to those who ain’t afraid”. This is just one of the beautiful lines on Mitchell’s album. This has to be one of the finest albums of all time., in my opinion. Songs about love, infatuation, insecurity are peppered throughout the album and Mitchell takes you on a journey of deep self-examination. Truly beautiful.
Check out other great albums we have in our Hoopla collection and don’t forget about free song downloads on Freegal. Music crafts the soundtrack of our lives. Make yours a great one!