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Interim President Jeff Ettinger inside Morrill Hall on Sept. 20, 2023. Ettinger gets deep with the Daily: “It’s bittersweet.”
Ettinger reflects on his presidency
Published April 22, 2024

Soundtrack of a City Council

From musical mashups to indie pop hits, Minneapolis’s incoming city council members have a wide range of recommendations to add to your playlists.
Image by Mary Ellen Ritter

Elected officials: they’re just like us! In all seriousness, as we delve into the depths of Spotify Wrapped season, Minneapolis’s incoming city council members are doing the same.

1. “Fountains” by Drake and Tems – Robin Wonsley Worlobah, Ward 2

“Afro beats are literally food to my soul. It uplifts me. It’s the only music that will instantly get me to the nearest dance floor. Most importantly, for many U.S. born Black people, like myself, the cultural connections that we had to our ancestral homes were severed when we were stolen and brought to settler lands as slaves,” Wonsley Worlobah said. “Afro beats is a global movement, which has enabled African-Indigenous artists and Afro-descendants from around the world to reclaim and re-establish a cultural bond with one another and with our ancestral home. It allowed us to begin to restore parts of what was stolen from us.”

2. “Jump Around” by House of Pain – Michael Rainville, Ward 3

After attending the Minnesota vs. Wisconsin football game, Rainville’s been all about this amped-up Wisconsin anthem. “Competition is all about the excitement,” he said. “When you’re the winner, you’re the winner — and you get to choose the song played on the field.”

3. “Love’s in Need of Love Today” by Stevie Wonder – LaTrisha Vetaw, Ward 4

“Listening to this song makes me so happy and it motivates me to do more in the world. It boosts my confidence while making me feel more connected to others,” LaTrisha Vetaw said. “I love singing every word when I play because I feel connected to the world.”

4. “Found/Tonight” by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Ben Platt – Lisa Goodman, Ward 7

“I wouldn’t say this is my favorite song of all time but it’s what I have been humming the most as I walked my dog this summer to sing along and take my mind off of everything else going on in the world,” Lisa Goodman said. She said that both songs hold significant meaning for her.

5. “Pop Life” by Prince – Andrea Jenkins, Ward 8

Jenkins is an avid music fan, which made choosing just one song difficult. Some of her other favorites include hits by Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Tupac, The Notorious B.I.G. and Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes.

6. “Same Love” by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis feat. Mary Lambert – Jason Chavez, Ward 9

“It’s old, but I still listen to it all the time,” Chavez said. “I played it for like two hours before I came out to my mom and dad, and it’s still something I want to listen to.”

7. “Megalovania” by Toby Fox – Aisha Chughtai, Ward 10

“My relationship with listening to music has always been that I’ll listen to something on repeat, over and over again,” Chugthai said. While “Megalovania” has been on loop for her lately, two other songs have cemented their place on her regular rotation. First, “Hey Shona” by Ta Ra Rum Pum earned its spot because during the recent election, she “listened to it more than anything else.” She also said that Brother Ali’s “All the Beauty in This Whole Life” deserved an honorable mention.

8. “Moonshadow” by Cat Stevens – Emily Koski, Ward 11

Koski’s pick is a classic nod to living life in the present moment. “Although, my 8-year-old daughter, Iris Koski, usually takes over the Alexa speaker in our house, and when she does she almost always plays Olivia Rodrigo’s album SOUR, so that is what I am listening to most of the time these days,” Koski said.

9. “Sunday Best” by Surfaces – Andrew Johnson, Ward 12

“If you wanted to nail me down to a specific song, I feel a lot of joy whenever I hear “Sunday Best” by Surfaces. It’s energizing and hopelessly positive, which is something we need more of in this world,” Johnson said. “I’d be remiss if I didn’t give a shout out to local artist Caroline Smith (now Your Smith), who is among my all-time favorites.”

10. “Spirit Cold” by Tall Heights – Linea Palmisano, Ward 13

“I got to see them play at First Ave shortly before COVID last year, and I am hopeful that I will be able to see them when they come back to the Twin Cities in January of next year. They play at the Amsterdam Bar in St. Paul,” Palmisano said. “It is an eclectic duo from Boston, and they tour with other interesting singer songwriters. I find them relaxing and soulful, which is what I find rejuvenating in between all the other events of my day job.”

Incoming councilmembers Elliot Payne, Jeremiah Ellison and Jamal Osman could not be reached for commentary.

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