Your Significant Other’s Favourite Music

Over the past few days, I’ve been reviewing Lauryn Hill’s discography. It wasn’t a difficult task – in the twenty years since she left The Fugees, she’s made two solo albums. 1998’s The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill is a stunning solo debut, a classic of neo-soul and an essential album of the late 1990s. 2003’s MTV Unplugged is flawed, but it’s a fascinating insight into a troubled mind, with its long diatribes about her political and personal beliefs.

lauryn-hill-mtv-unpluggedSo while a Lauryn Hill: Worst To Best blog post wouldn’t be very interesting, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill is also noteworthy as one of my wife’s favourite albums. I’d never heard it before she played it to me, and it’s the first album she cited as a favourite while we were dating. She’s been enjoying Alt-J and Janelle Monae recently, and her other favourite albums include:

Automatic For The PeopleR.E.M.
The King Is DeadThe Decemberists
Ohio – Over The Rhine

It’s probably a little frustrating living with me as I have a big collection and dominate the stereo, but we have enough common tastes that we’re compatible.

What are some of your significant other’s favourite music choices? If you don’t have a significant other, and have the stereo all to yourself, but still want to post, feel free to post about an ex, a parent, a child, or a pet.


  1. Mrs ForTheDeaf and I both love The Temperance Movement, Ray Lamontange and Father John Misty. We both like R.E.M and Macy Gray too. She loves the blues singers more than the bands. She’s mostly Motown and Stax and Disco. I loathe Disco

  2. My wife listens to a lot of the music I like but there are some points where we differ. She’s a bigger fan of U2 than I ever have been and the same goes for Michael Jackson. She also loves to torment me sometimes with Italian music from her youth and cheesy 80s, like Foreigner and Frozen Ghost.

  3. This is going to sound rather sexist but it’s true:you should never allow a woman’s taste in music to colour your feelings for her, because often it’s very disappointing. I’ve been married nine years and for a few years before that (after first marriage ended) I dated a few women. And sooner or later (quite soon if you’re a music nut) you get to the inevitable question: what kind of music do you like? Occasionally I would find one whose record collection was more than Carole King’s Tapestry and Sade, but I had a disturbing run of identical answers: “I quite like Snow Patrol”. Not “I love this or that”, but no real interest. Perhaps that’s better than her having a passion for something that you don’t like, and it means usually she will listen to/tolerate what you put on because music is your area on interest, not hers. One thing that freaked a few out was when my iTunes started at track one, which is Ace of Spades by Motorhead. Guaranteed to alarm them and suggest you’re a hooligan. My wife is Venezuelan and likes Spanish language music, most of which (again, I’m going to sound prejudiced) is, to my ears, parents’ music, not young people’s stuff, and although I am thoroughly out of touch with teenagers’ tastes now, I do like a lot of songs that Grandma thinks are rough and uncouth. If she does choose something on YouTube it will be Stairway to Heaven, Bohemian Rhapsody or Hotel California. How did I fall in love with this woman?

    • I guess the worst scenario is being with a passionate music lover who likes completely different stuff than you. Or someone who watches TV all the time and no music. Having a mild music fan as a partner sounds workable.

  4. My lovely wife lets me be dj, most of the time. We have a lot of common ground when it comes to music, partly because she doesn’t really care if music is on and is happy to sit in silence also. But we do have our differences, like I have to listen to SLAYER! in the car by myself, as does she with her Neil Diamond. But her first pics would be Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and the Pogues, and then a bunch more from there. Fortunately, I like all three of those!

    • I think I’m both extremes in my family – my wife doesn’t really like James Taylor or Iron Maiden, and like both. Pretty sure my wife would hate Leonard Cohen, and only likes the swingy/jazzy side of Tom Waits, not his voice.

  5. I don’t have a significant other currently, so I will list a few of my good friends’ favourites:
    One of my sorority sisters that I live with just discovered Tame Impala, so we listen to them together. She also likes the White Stripes, and we like pop artists like La Roux as well. She recently started listening to Car Seat Headrest because of me never shutting up about Will Toledo.
    My best friend from home is a huge folk rock fan and still swears the night he and I went to see Mumford and Sons when we were 16 was the best night of his life. My other best friend from home loves all things 70s and just doesn’t understand my love of 90s indie rock or Britpop, but we bond over artists like Father John Misty, Spoon, Beach Fossils and Wild Nothing.
    My “little” for my sorority loves Abba, Electric Light Orchestra and the Beach Boys.
    One of my friends I got closer to this past school year introduced me to Beach House and re-introduced me to Parquet Courts. We also went to see The War on Drugs with two other friends and will see Kevin Morby in a few months. Their two favourite bands are Arcade Fire and Radiohead.
    Another new friend from this year loves Car Seat Headrest, Neutral Milk Hotel, Alt-J and anything lo-fi and folk rock.

  6. My wife enjoys music but isn’t (probably needless to say) anywhere near as fanatical as me or probably anybody on here. But some of her favorites are Joan Armatrading, Sting, some Floyd stuff like “Wish You Were Here,” Springsteen (“Wild and the Innocent” is our mutual favorite). She also likes Van Morrison and Gil Scott-Heron. Loves Stevie Wonder, She’s not a big jazz fan but when she hears it, if it’s not too “outside” she’ll dig it. She once described jazz as “rich” and I thought that was an apt description. LIke me, she digs a lot of classic rock but nothing super-heavy like metal of any sort. (She’s sick to death of the Beatles, but likes Paul Simon, Steely Dan.) She digs Buddy Guy and we’ve seen him a million times. Had we never gone to a live blues show, she might not have enjoyed it as much but she gets it. Clapton too, but more his solo stuff than heavy blues. So, altogether reasonably compatible and we both hate middle-of-the-road “rock” that doesn’t rock.

      • James Taylor (we like him on record but it seems like seeing him would be a snoozefest); Jimmy Buffett (pleasant but mild); ‘soft rock’ in general. Some of it’s good (early Elton John), some of it sucks (later Elton John). We’re not entirely in sync on that song-for-song. She likes America (the band) better than me. “Your Mama Don’t Dance” is a good example of a song that wants to rock but doesn’t know how. So is Billy Joel’s “Still Rock n Roll to Me.”

        • I like James Taylor and early Elton John (although I think his singles overshadowed his albums). Maybe you need to be American to get Jimmy Buffett – I only really know the ‘Margaritaville’ song, and his appearance on Yacht Rock.

          • Yeah, we’re in agreement on Sweet Baby James and Elton. I just don’t think Taylor would be very interesting to go see live. He’s for the wine-and-cheese set. I saw Elton early in his career and he was a Jerry Lee Lewis-type rocker. I actually think he’s great but he’s now a Vegas type. No hard edges. Buffett ain’t bad but I can’t live there. A yacht rocker almost literally

  7. Without exaggeration, the song ‘ex-factor’ from this album would be in my all-time top 25, what a track, love the ‘you say you’d die for me, why don’t you live for me’
    And automatic for the people is a fine choice too!

  8. The Lauryn Hill album is a classic, and one that both my wife and I enjoy. Some of our tastes overlap, but she loves Tori Amos whereas I cannot stand her music; we have agreed to disagree on Tori.

  9. A former girlfriend was a Nice Drake fan. Her enthusiasm for his albums and the mystery surrounding Drake rubbed off on me. His music will forever be linked to that friendship for me.

  10. I can relate to this post an awfy lot. I tend to control the music at home… though it’s not intentional! My wife does like music a whole lot, though… she introduced me to that Lauryn Hill album (which I think is great) and we both liked R.E.M. when we met. Now we share a fondness for a load of bands and artists of varying styles.

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