with Aurora Bella

While 2020 has been a challenging year for musicians, Saskatoon singer-songwriter Aurora Bella has managed to stay busy: streaming performances for SaskMusic’s Open House concert series and VirtualNess Music Festival, playing at the Albertfest socially distanced concert, and competing in the Virtual Jim Beam National Talent Search Tour during Canadian Music Week. Aurora is also in production on two albums that will be released soon. Here is her six-song playlist. /Gregory Beatty

“My Zero”

Ezra Furman | Day of the Dog (2013) | YouTube

Ezra Furman played Amigos in January. I went with some friends for some food before the show — they had the tightest sound check I’d ever heard. When the show started, we danced non-stop. Ezra sat down after the show for a little to hang out with us. It was incredible. I’ve been a fan ever since.

“Make Me Feel”

Janelle Monae | Dirty Computer (2018) | YouTube

Janelle Monae is my celebrity crush. Her style is iconic, her dancing is fabulous, and her music is precise and funky. This song is probably my favourite — it’s sexual and confident, and makes me want to dance.


The Electric Swing Circus | It Flew By (2017) | YouTube

I discovered the world of electro swing a few years back and its effect on me was life-altering. The genre takes the music of the black-and-white films I love so much and makes it fresh again. This particular song is also lyrically really deep, with a story that questions the imaginary divides we build between people.


Cole Dine | Single (2019)| YouTube

Cole and I studied music together for two years and I’m so glad we did or I might never have heard this song. The atmosphere of “Smoke” truly reflects the title and listening to it always seems to put me into a different, more contemplative headspace.

“Kiss Me”

Sixpence None the Richer | Sixpence None the Richer (1997) | YouTube

I play this song on repeat every time I have a crush. The lyrics — which are magical — never mention the gender of the person being sung to, and I love how that means the romance could be about anyone.

“Cigarette Daydreams”

Cage the Elephant | Melophobia (2013) | YouTube

This is my “driving at two in the morning” song. To me, it feels like a reflection, a sort of homage to youth, in all its complexity. Of all the songs on this list, this one is probably the closest to my own music.