Important disclaimer but not quite Tipper Sticker: There are a couple songs on the playlists below that parents might not want young children listening to, but in most cases you’d have to be listening carefully. There are no songs that couldn't be played on the radio, and nothing that bears an “Explicit” tag. The playlists are filled with great songs that have formed and inspired thousands over the decades.
The Shrine Mont PlaylistS
"The Dance" is filled with music that makes you want to move your feet or twirl around the pavilion making slow-dancing couples feel uncomfortable (sometimes both).
“St. G.’s Rebellion” is a playlist of songs from “The Dance” featuring bands like The Clash, Violent Femmes and The Who. These are my personal favorites, more on that in the article to follow.
"The Slideshow" is filled with music that would be played along with the end-of-session slideshow. It's slower, hopeful and introspective. It's basically the Cat Stevens of playlists.
“The Green Book” contains songs from our camp hymnal of the same name. It includes songs played at camp worship that can be found on Spotify.
“Shrine Mont Jams” (above) is the omnibus playlist, combining the music from “The Dance” and “The Slideshow” with some more songs that didn’t quite fit in either category.
I got a lot of help putting this playlist together from counselors and campers spanning four decades of camp. I would thank them each by name for the thought and care they put into picking the songs, but that'd take forever. So, thank you all.
Some things to note about "Shrine Mont Jams" and the following article.
That Loving Rebellion
PlayList: The Green Book
PlayList: The Dance
Songs like “Train in Vain” by The Clash, “My Generation” by The Who and “It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)” by R.E.M. spoke to the brokenness and absurdity of the world. These songs were honest about why it sucks sometimes to be a young adult or teenager – the powerlessness and disenfranchisement – but something about belting out these songs together with Hoss, camp’s house band made up of former counselors, made all that go away. Most importantly, these songs held out hope that things can and will get better, that the meek and powerless shall inherit the earth. For me, the song that typified this was and is Modern English’s “I Melt With You”:
PlayList: St. G's Rebellion
It wasn’t an easy task. I didn’t flip a switch and become a teenaged Mr. Rogers or stand on a windy cliff and toss my Kid Rock CD into the ocean, swearing to never listen to crappy music again. Throughout middle and high school I would join in on bullying or go through long periods where I thought only about myself. But what I’d learned at St. George’s about the Body of Christ and my membership in it changed the way I saw the world on a molecular level: Instead of seeing meanness as a form of personal advancement (as it so often is in grade school), meanness and cruelty became something that corroded my soul. Each word I said out of hate or fear drew me away from the rebellion I’d joined at St. G’s, while each counter-cultural good deed I did brought me closer to my home among the misfits who believed, in spite of so much counterevidence, that the world didn’t have to spin on an axis of greed and fear.
Away from the mountain, I was sustained by playlists I created of the music from camp dances, slideshows and everything in between. Even when it had been months since I saw friends from camp and longer since I was last at Shrine Mont, our music brought me back and reminded me that the rebellion still needed my help. It still does today.
Now that everyone in the Shrine Mont Camps family has returned to the Valley of the World, I hope that the playlists I’ve created with the help of that constantly-growing family can sustain you and bring you joy too. Go in peace to love and serve the Lord, and viva la resistance.
By Ed Keithly
PlayList: The Slideshow
Ed Keithly is the editor of this blog. He first came to Shrine Mont as a St. George's camper in 2000, returning in 2007 to work as a counselor. He's worked at Shrine Mont in some capacity every summer since.
In his day job, Ed works as the vocation officer serving the Diocese of Virginia, shepherding future priests and deacons through the discernment and formation process and seeking to strengthen diocesan programs for future leaders of the Church.
Ed graduated from Sewanee in 2010. He lives in the Fan District of Richmond.
The View from the Mountain is written by a rotating cast of staff writers and contributors.