Here at 88Nine Radio Milwaukee, we interns sit at a row of desks affectionately known as Intern Alley. Intern Alley serves as a reminder that $8 wine bottles can be classy in the right lighting and tissues are a luxury item. Caught between wanting to burst into independence and still banking on our parent’s health insurance, this playlist captures the in-between — the alley — if you will, of an intern’s summer.
We are the little guys, the grab-your-coffee and the file-your-mail, the eager and the hungry — insert ramen noodle joke here. Currently residing in the character-building years, we are ambitiously consuming as much experience as possible and holding fast to the “Work Hard. Play Hard.” belief. So before our naive dreams are shattered, we’ve harvested tracks that inspire and represent the chaotic energy of a summer intern.
Based on a summer spent with 88Nine’s music, intern Andrea Simms has cultivated a collection of songs that display the spectrum of emotion experienced in the passageway into adulthood. The playlist sparks off with an outbreak of youthful energy with absolute bumps from Lizzo, Tank and The Bangas and GoldLink. These tracks radiate positivity and encourage listeners to experience summer time in its purest form: bike rides, weekend link ups and melted ice cream.
Embracing the carefree, we have tracks from Chance and Tyler the Creator, whose lyrical ridiculousness reminds us of the importance of keeping our humor. What would summer be without a casual romance? But since we are being realistic here, we need songs to live vicariously through, because college summers are all about that cash. So we have Shura, Joy Crookes and Kishi Bashi serving up intoxicating love-ridden hallucinations for the listener’s imagination.
Now we enter the middle of the alley, this is always the darkest and most confusing. As we stumble through questions of self-worth and endure the anxiety of our amassing student debt, we reach for deeper meaning and embrace the bizarre. During this time we have Tame Impala and Bon Iver to accompany our mental meandering. The end of the alley is always closer than expected, with only 25 songs our playlist is a quick mover. The playlist ends with songs that attempt to tie up this emotional experience while simultaneously preparing us for the bustle of backpack season. And who better to inspire hope than the spiritual guide himself, Kevin Morby.
The Intern Alley playlist has that tinge of sweetness that comes from the smell of an alley’s rotting garbage mixed with a nostalgic aroma. We are allowed to feel both frustrated and free, embarking on the limitless highway while still making barely enough to pay for gas. For the best listening experience heat up some leftover pizza, pour yourself a lukewarm PBR and turn off your air conditioning.