Holden's Playlist Luke Blackwell, JONATHAN HILLRICHS

Song 1

"Stressed Out"

twenty one pilots


Wish we could turn back time (oh), to the good ol' days (oh),

When our momma sang us to sleep but now we're stressed out.

We're stressed out.

Sometimes a certain smell will take me back to when I was young,

How come I'm never able to identify where it's coming from,

I'd make a candle out of it if I ever found it,

Try to sell it, never sell out of it, I'd probably only sell one,

It'd be to my brother, 'cause we have the same nose,

Same clothes homegrown a stone's throw from a creek we used to roam,

But it would remind us of when nothing really mattered,

Out of student loans and treehouse homes we all would take the latter.


“And yet I still act sometimes like I was only about twelve. Everybody says that, especially my father. It's partly true, too, but it isn't all true. People always think something's all true. I don't give a damn, except that I get bored sometimes when people tell me to act my age.” (Salinger 13) Holden has mixed feelings about growing up. On one hand he likes to be young and doesn’t mind that he acts immature, but he also realizes that being young has limitations. He wants to stay young and have the same privileges as an adult, which is not entirely possible. I believe the chorus of “Stressed Out” would connect with Holden’s inner child and make him feel more comfortable with his immaturity.

Song 2

"Feel Like Making Love"

Bad Company


Baby, when I think about you

I think about love

Darlin', don't live without you

And your love

If I had those golden dreams

Of my yesterdays

I would wrap you in the heaven

'Til I'm dyin' on the way

Feel like makin'

Feel like makin' love

Feel like makin' love to you


“Women kill me. They really do. I don't mean I'm oversexed or anything like that – although I am quite sexy. I just like them, I mean.” (Salinger 70) Holden is a confused boy, he really stresses the fact that he doesn’t understand sex, but likes women. He set his own rules to help himself out, but always manages to break it. Although he doesn’t full understand it, when he “feels like making love,” he just goes for it anyways.


"Love the Way you Lie"



You ever love somebody so much you can barely breathe when you're with 'em

You meet and neither one of you even know what hit 'em

Got that warm fuzzy feeling

Yeah, them chills you used to get 'em

Now you're getting fucking sick of looking at 'em

You swore you'd never hit 'em; never do nothing to hurt 'em

Now you're in each other's face spewing venom in your words when you spit them

You push, pull each other's hair, scratch, claw, bit 'em

Throw 'em down, pin 'em

So lost in the moments when you're in them

It's the rage that took over,

It controls you both

So they say you're best to go your separate ways

Guess that they don't know you 'cause today that was yesterday

Yesterday is over, it's a different day

Sound like broken records playing over but you promised her

Next time you show restraint

You don't get another chance

Life is no Nintendo game

But you lied again

Now you get to watch her leave out the window

Guess that's why they call it window pane


“I probably wouldn’t’ve taken her even if she’d wanted to go with me. She wouldn’t have been anybody to go with. The terrible part, though, is that I meant it when I asked her. That’s the terrible part. I swear to God I’m a madman.” (Salinger 174) Holden has real feelings for Sally. Although he tries to deny it sometimes, he is in love with her. When she refused to go with him, the “warm fuzzy feeling” she gave him disappeared. The way Eminem expresses his pain would connect with what holden feels when he thinks about her.


"My Name Is"



My English teacher wanted to flunk me in junior high

Thanks a lot, next semester I'll be 35

I smacked him in his face with an eraser

Chased him with a stapler

Stapled his nuts to a stack of papers


“I don't think I’ll ever forgive him for reading me that crap out loud. I wouldn’t’ve read it out loud to him if he’d written it - I really wouldn’t. In the first place, I’d only written that damn note so that he wouldn’t feel too bad about flunking me.” (Salinger 17) Holden flunked most of his classes at Pency, in fact he only passed one of them. He didn’t care about school, and he certainly didn’t mind flunking his classes either. I think he would find “My Name Is” to be entertaining because of the way Eminem reacted to his teacher trying to flunk him.


"The World I know"

Collective Soul


Has our conscience shown?

Has the sweet breeze blown?

Has all kindness gone?

Hope still lingers on.

I drink myself of newfound pity

Sitting alone in New York City

And I don't know why.


“When I finally got down off the radiator and went out to the hat-check room, I was crying and all. I don't know why, but I was. I guess it was because I was feeling so damn depressed and lonesome.” (Salinger 198) At this point in the story, Holden has been through a lot. He has gotten into fights, been rejected, and drank more than a normal sixteen year old should. “The World I Know” is a song about depression, and the struggles of being alone. I believe Holden would be able to connect to, “sitting alone in New York City.”



Matchbox 20


All day staring at the ceiling

Making friends with shadows on my wall

All night hearing voices telling me

That I should get some sleep

Because tomorrow might be good for something

Hold on

Feeling like I'm headed for a breakdown

And I don't know why

But I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell

I know right now you can't tell

But stay awhile and maybe then you'll see

A different side of me

I'm not crazy, I'm just a little impaired

I know right now you don't care

But soon enough you're gonna think of me

And how I used to be...me


“I was only thirteen, and they were going to have my psychoanalyzed and all, because I broke all the windows in the garage. I don't blame them. I really don't. I slept in the garage the night he died, and I broke all the goddam windows with my fist, just for the hell of it. I even tried to break all the windows on the station wagon we had that summer, but my hand was already broken and everything by that time, and I couldn't do it. It was a very stupid thing to do, I'll admit, but I hardly didn't even know I was doing it, and you didn't know Allie.” (Salinger 50) Holden Admits multiple times throughout the book that he might be mentally crazy. This song describes someone as not crazy, but a different side of their personality. It also speaks to accepting people regardless of their mental status but accepting them for who they are and Holden would appreciate this.



Kanye West


And I always find, yeah, I always find something wrong

You been putting up with my shit just way too long

I'm so gifted at finding what I don't like the most

So I think it's time for us to have a toast

Let's have a toast for the douchebags

Let's have a toast for the assholes

Let's have a toast for the scumbags

Every one of them that I know

Let's have a toast for the jerk-offs

That'll never take work off

Baby, I got a plan

Run away fast as you can


“One of the biggest reasons I left Elkton Hills was because I was surrounded by phonies. That's all. They were coming in the goddam window.” (Salinger 19) The songs chorus speaks to toasting all the awful people in Kanye’s life and running away. THe concept of people being phony is one of the largest themes in the novel. Holden is obsessed with people's deceptions and exposing them for who he believes they truly are. And with Sally he contemplates running away and fleeing his issues that seem to follow him from school to school. This songs message and lyrical style would connect deeply with Holden.


"You're Never Over"



The days are cold, living without you

The nights are long, I’m growing older

I miss the days of old, thinking about you

You may be gone, but you’re never over

And it don’t stop and it don’t quit

And it don’t stop and it don’t quit

And I miss you, I just miss you

I just miss you oh oooh

Homie I’ll never forget you


“He's dead now. He got leukemia and died when we were up in Maine, on July 18, 1946. You'd have liked him. He was two years younger than I was, but he was about fifty times as intelligent. He was terrifically intelligent.” (Salinger 49) The talk of Allie really invigorates him to be descriptive to the audience. The songs message of never forgetting a lost family member will resonate with Holden as he copes with Allies unexpected death. The repetition of the phrase “I miss you,” will also be something Holden can relate, compounding the connection he has to this song.



Third Eye Blind


The angry boy a bit too insane

Icing over a secret pain

You know you don't belong

You're the first to fight

You're way too loud

You're the flash of light on a burial shroud

I know something's wrong

Well everyone I know has got a reason

To say put the past away


“The first thing I did when I got off at Penn Station, I went into this phone booth. I felt like giving somebody a buzz […] but as soon as I was inside, I couldn't think of anybody to call up. My brother D.B. was in Hollywood. My kid sister Phoebe […] was out. Then I thought of giving Jane Gallagher's mother a buzz […]. Then I thought of calling this girl […] Sally Hayes. […] I thought of calling […] Carl Luce. […] So I ended up not calling anybody. I came out of the booth, after about twenty minutes or so.” (Salinger 77) The feeling of having no one to call made plain to Holden his isolation. He has blocked out a lot of his friends or came up with excuses to not call them, creating an artificial loneliness that he lived with during his time in New York. The songs message of having people that care about the “Jumper” would resonate with.


"Bad Day"

Daniel Powter


Where is the moment we needed the most

You kick up the leaves and the magic is lost

They tell me your blue skies fade to grey

They tell me your passion's gone away

And I don't need no carryin' on

You stand in the line just to hit a new low

You're faking a smile with the coffee to go

You tell me your life's been way off line

You're falling to pieces every time

And I don't need no carryin' on

'Cause you had a bad day

You're taking one down

You sing a sad song just to turn it around

You say you don't know

You tell me don't lie

You work at a smile and you go for a ride


“What I was really hanging around for, I was trying to feel some kind of good-by. I mean I've left schools and places I didn't even know I was leaving them. I hate that. I don't care if it's a sad good-by or a bad good-by, but when I leave a place I like to know I'm leaving it. If you don't, you feel even worse.” (Salinger 7) The sadness Holden felt about leaving Pency was hidden under the surface. He often feels that his life is a dulled version of what others live and this song speaks to similar issues. He doesn't seem to desire to make himself happier and the somber tone would appeal to his attitude towards life.

Created By
Luke Blackwell

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