Ever wondered what music your favourite band listens too? What songs inspire the best songwriters?

In this feature, we’ll speak to some of HOT VOX’s favourite new artists on the gigging scene and find out what songs shaped them to be the musicians and artists they are today and what’s on their Spotify Playlist.



Today’s playlist is curated by Grace Binford


Who is Grace Binford? 

I’m a songwriter and artist originally from Kentucky in the States. I very fortunately grew up with a lot of music in my house and eventually taught myself to play guitar and started writing, I guess as a way to cope with the inevitable loneliness of growing up, and because it was one of the first things that helped me make sense of an overwhelming world. After moving to London I realised for me it’s always been about connecting with other people and searching for the truth, and meeting other artists here made it a bit more possible to do those things. Major influences for me are Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Crowded House, The National, Nick Cave, and all the badass women out there in the London live music scene and around the world.


Grace Binford's Playlist

Song from the first album you ever bought/listened to?

First song I remember listening to is You Can Close Your Eyes by James Taylor. I was really little in the back of my parents car and as I listened I just cried. I think my mum and dad were like, “Okay, she’s going to be a sensitive one,” and they were right. But it’s a perfect, raw folk song, and it’s hard not to cry at that.


A song you wish you had written?

For the last several months, Didn’t Know What I Was in For by Better Oblivion Community Center (Phoebe Bridgers and Conor Oberst). You know when you just listen to a song and your chest aches? It’s a masterpiece.

A song that inspires you?

I have a different answer for this question every time I hear something a bit new, or nostalgic but reinvented, or just painstakingly honest. Last night The Bug Collector by Haley Heynderickx came on my recommended and it sparked something for me.


Last song you purchased?

Honestly, the last music I purchased was a 70s Christmas compilation vinyl record - to save you from having to listen to that in early November I’ll tell you the last thing I downloaded on Spotify... Ode to Joy, Wilco’s new album, and my favourite song from that is Quiet Amplifier.

A song that makes you feel nostalgic?

Most of Us Are Sad by the Eagles. My grandfather and my mum used to play the Eagles all the time. I came across this song again a couple years ago when I was getting back into a lot of the music I grew up with, and it’s been on, like, every sad playlist I’ve made since.

Your favourite sing-along song in the shower?

Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks by The National. I mean, it’s not a pep-talk-get-you-ready-for-the-day kind of sing-along shower song, but if that’s the sort of thing you need then I guess this isn’t going to be the playlist for you.

A song that confirmed your love for music?

The first time I listened to Clouds (Joni Mitchell’s second album) all the way through it was all I could think about for days. The final track on that is Both Sides Now and, like it has for millions of people, it resonated with me in a way no other song had before. It’s the kind of song built to last lifetimes, and just the idea that it’s possible for a person to create something like that gave me a drive to keep writing.


A song you put on when getting ready for a big night out?

Chocolate Cake by Crowded House. Our definitions of ‘a big night out’ probably differ, but this is definitely my favourite song to get ready to. It’s absolutely mad and it puts me in a great mood.

The song do you put on repeat if you’ve just had your heart broken?

Can I give you two for this one? Last time I had my heart broken I listened to Into My Arms (Nick Cave) on repeat, which is probably the worst idea ever because you can’t get over someone while listening to a song like that, but if I had it to do over again I’d listen to Lucy Dacus’ Night Shift instead. I think that would be a brilliant song to go through a heartbreak with.


Your worst guilty pleasure song?

I can’t tell you what my actual worst guilty pleasure song is because it would completely ruin this playlist, but I’ll give you the next best thing: Mr. Blue Sky - Electric Light Orchestra. It’s a bit ridiculous (and so ironic given my otherwise depressing queue of songs), but whenever I hear it I can’t help but smile.


You can listen to Grace Binford's playlist in the Spotify link below. Remember to make sure you follow HOT VOX to keep up to date with the exciting acts on our roster.




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