barista steaming coffee while a coffee shop playlist plays in the background

Coffee Shop Tunes

Ever so often, I walk into a coffee shop and think, “Man! Wouldn’t it be cool to work here?” And sometimes, all I mean is wouldn’t it be cool to trade my fluorescent-lit office for the warm, naturally lit, indie-music-playing buzz of my favorite coffee shop? To sit in a little wooden booth wearing whatever I’m feeling at the time—perhaps jeans and a black-and-white flannel button-down like the girl I saw this morning—and tap my fingers on my laptop while coffee grinds and milk steams in the background?

And other times, what I really mean is wouldn’t it be cool to work here? To be the girl behind the counter pouring people coffee and warming muffins and oatmeal and seeing people’s eyes brighten at little things like maple lattes and pumpkin bread? To spend my whole day treating people and chirping, “Have a wonderful day!”

And I could, theoretically, quit my salaried job with good benefits to do this, but either I’m not brave enough, or deep down I know that spending day after day in a coffee shop wouldn’t be as grand as I imagine it would be. But still—I dream about it all the time.

Really, though, I think my ache is more about freedom. Freedom to work any time, anywhere, and to have the luxury of doing so in places I find inspiring, whether that’s a coffee shop in the morning or a park on a crisp autumn day or a beer garden in the afternoon or my porch at sunset. Wouldn’t that be so grand?

Until then, I guess I’ll have to make do with listening to my “coffee shop playlist” and pretending that’s where I am. Without further ado, the second installment of our mix tape series, a mix of indie pop/folk tunes that remind me of coffee shops everywhere.

Listen to this coffee shop playlist on Spotify.

Coffee Shop Tunes Track List
  1. “Big Black Car,” Gregory Alan Isakov
  2. “Where Happiness Lives,” Magnet
  3. “Nicest Thing,” Kate Nash
  4. “Snowship,” Benjamin Francis Leftwich
  5. “The Reckless and the Brave,” All Time Low
  6. “Be Okay,” Oh Honey
  7. “Stubborn Love,” The Lumineers
  8. “Even the Darkness Has Arms,” The Barr Brothers
  9. “Alabama Pines,” Jason Isbell
  10. “A Sky Full of Stars,” Coldplay
  11. “What Would I Do Without You,” Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors
  12. “Michigan,” The Milk Carton Kids
  13. “Renegades,” X Ambassadors
  14. “Thunder Clatter,” Wild Cub
  15. “All My Tears,” Ane Brun
  16. “Take Me Back,” Sarah Jarosz
  17. “Heart’s Content,” Brandi Carlile

What music reminds you of places that inspire you?

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