The Nasty Woman Band keeps spirits up with music at the Women's March in Oakland, Jan. 21, 2017.

The Nasty Woman Band keeps spirits up with music at the Women's March in Oakland, Jan. 21, 2017. (Gabe Meline/KQED)

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The morning after the election, I was suspicious of people who appeared to feel full of righteous, organized vigor. “No time for despair,” they posted on Facebook, seeming cool, calm, determined. “Now is the time to fight!”

“Really?” I recall mumbling at my phone through the haze of an impressive hangover and the dawning realization that the previous evening’s events were not, in fact, a dream. “I feel like there’s a little time for despair.”

I stand by this sentiment: mourning, depression, anxiety and nihilism are all real, and they’re all really valid states in which to find oneself at this particular American moment. Yesterday, Gabe made you a playlist for those feelings. Go ahead, wallow in it.

Today, I’m here to grab your hand and pull you out of the well.


Did you see the rainbow that appeared today over the Bay Area after last night’s thunderstorms? At the risk of sounding like Stuart Smalley, every day brings a new chance to be part of something positive. Whether you’re participating in a march this weekend or organizing your own action in response to our new administration, you’re going to need some music to keep you company. With that in mind, here’s a playlist full of fight songs.

No, music on its own won’t solve anything. That’s going to take boots on the ground, and donations to organizations you care about, and mainly a whole lot of refusing to shut up. But you know what? Songs certainly never hurt. And sometimes, they’re more capable of inspiring us, invigorating us, and getting us up and out there than just about anything else. Feel free to add your own favorites in the comments below.

Forward March, a playlist by esilvers on Spotify

Songs to help you pick yourself up and get moving.


CLARIFICATION: The image in a previous version of this story has been replaced.

An Alternate Inauguration Day Playlist, Part Two: Looking Up 23 January,2017Emma Silvers

  • SensualHarassment

    Strangely enough, the woman pictured here is likely an accomplice to an attempted assault by arson. Her friend, pictured directly behind her, lit a trump supporters hair on fire, while chanting #LoveTrumpsHate. Boy, this just keeps getting better and better.


    • ejaculate conception

      you can see the edges of the blue beanie (of the young woman who set the other woman on fire) in the picture, slightly behind her friend’s arm.

      ironic that kqed, in publishing this sympathetic article, has helped expose these anti social criminals.

  • vanilla coke

    ironic that the woman lauded in this photo for righteous courage and virtue set another woman on fire at the very same event. perhaps some introspection is due on the part of the author, what is the real motivation for the gathering? it clearly is not an accurate representation if attendees are capable of setting fire to the hair of unsuspecting human beings.

  • Joan McCarthy

    Heres a song to add to your playlist:


Emma Silvers

Emma Silvers is the former music editor at KQED Arts. She has previously been published in Rolling Stone, Mother Jones, and has covered music and culture for a variety of Bay Area publications. Follow her at @emmaruthless, if you’re into that kind of thing.