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This Playlist Celebrates Black Girl Joy

Ready to welcome the New Year with happiness and positive energy? We’ve chosen 27 songs featuring female artists that instantly lift the spirit.

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Charlot Kristensen
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Time is precious, and 2020 showed us what really matters — spending cherished moments with our families, significant others, children, fur babies and dearest friends. So let’s step into the new year with a renewed spirit, hope, optimism and determination. Despite the ongoing chaos in our nation politically, socially and economically, we can commit to claiming moments of joy every day.

That’s why Sisters has packed this “Black Girl Joy” playlist with 27 uplifting, inspirational, motivational and good vibrations-filled songs by some of our favorite artists. As only the Queen of Soul can, Aretha Franklin beckons us to “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive,” Patti LaBelle invites us to seize a “New Day” and Michelle Williams, assisted by her Destiny’s Child sisters Beyoncé and Kelly Rowland, encourages us to “Say Yes.”

To help us let go and let our higher power take over, Gloria Gaynor reminds us that “Joy Comes in the Morning;” Ann Nesby’s “So Much Joy” makes us clap, shout and do a church lady stomp; and Kelly Price and the Clark Sisters brighten our outlook with “You Brought the Sunshine.”

Songs by Beyoncé (“Love On Top”), Jill Scott (“Golden”), the Pointer Sisters (“Happiness”), Solange (“Feel Good Song”) and Ella Fitzgerald (“Blue Skies”) remind us not to worry and to be happy. Reinforcing the joyful theme, Mary J. Blige puts her hip-hop soul spin on Stevie Wonder’s “Overjoyed” and provided the soundtrack for Kamala’s white-suited strut and victory speech with “Work That,” Anita Baker’s velvety smooth soprano warms us from the inside out on her classic “You Bring Me Joy” and on “(Never Gonna) Steal My Joy” Mandisa proclaims, “the world may try, but they’re never gonna steal my joy.”

If you’re looking for New Year’s-themed music for a festive evening, find that playlist here. 

Between the pandemic and protests, the past year has tested our faith, but also strengthened our resolve and shown us our resilience. We held down our households, picked up new crafting, gardening and baking hobbies. Some of us crushed Zoom calls and excelled while working remotely. Others helped everyone get through this as essential workers. We practiced self-care, recharged our spiritual batteries and reconnected with ourselves on a deeper level. In the process, we discovered we are even fiercer than we thought. 

Let’s radiate that energy in the new year. As Deniece Williams offers on “Black Butterfly,” “Set the skies on fire. Rise up even higher. So the ageless winds of time can catch your wings.”