ecoTunes

greenbudsStill on the subject of music, the latest issue of Sierra Magazine offers a short playlist of eco-tunes “that won’t make you cringe.” In my Nature and Popular Culture course, I always have a song playing as the students are coming in before I start the class, and it’s always a song related to the topic of the day. Here are a few of the students’ favorites listed with the course topics:

  • Course Introductions – “End of the World” by Great Big Sea (an R.E.M. song, but I prefer the GBS version)
  • Consumerism – “Shopping” by The Barenaked Ladies
  • Lawns & Gardens – “Ride the Lawn” by Dana Lyons
  • Cars – “Dead Skunk” by Louden Wainright
  • Countering Consumerism – “Buy Nothing Day” by Chumbawamba


I also wanted to mention another music-related resource for activists and teachers, or just for your listening pleasure. With contributions from the subscribers to the NEES mailing list (that’s the Northeast Environmental Studies Group), Rich Wallace from Ursinus College has compiled a long list of environment and Nature themed songs. Originally, it was supposed to be a list of songs related to climate chaos, but things branched out. Lots of ideas there. What about your fave ecoTunes playlists or songs? Use the comments section to share your suggestions.

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About Mark S. Meisner

Executive Director of the International Environmental Communication Association (IECA). I also research, teach, write about, and speak on environmental and sustainability communication, media, culture, and policy. Facts are usually facts, but opinions and sense of humour are always my own.
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7 Responses to ecoTunes

  1. Pingback: earth songs: Michael Jackson’s cultural ecologies | immanence

  2. Pingback: More ecoTunes « Indications: Environmental Communication & Culture blog

  3. april says:

    And of course Joni Mitchell – The Arrangement

  4. Mark Meisner says:

    Hey Dylan. My apologies for the oversight. I had forgotten about that compilation (the one you made for COCE 2005, right?). Do you have that listed anywhere that we can link to? Or, just post the playlist here man!

  5. Dylan says:

    I can’t believe my compilation didn’t even get a passing reference. Geez.

  6. Mark Meisner says:

    Update: I just wanted to point out a couple of other posts on music and Nature that came out today. First up are Adrian Ivakhiv’s expansive thoughts on Michael Jackson’s cultural ecologies. Adrian rightly points out that “message-focused instrumentalism — a focus on songs that would convey or encode new ecological meanings and sensibilities” is too limiting of an analysis. His post is well worth a read. Secondly, TreeHugger expands on the Earth Song story mentioned in my previous post.

  7. Jacquie says:

    Hi Mark. I’ll have to look some of these songs up. Two of my favourite eco songs are “Save This House” and “Mists of Crofton” by Spirit of the West.

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