Playlist: It Was Time to Go

“I broke up with my girlfriend, because we weren’t good for each other. But all the break-up music I can find is from the point of view of the break-up-ee. Can you recommend some tunes for me?”

I can and I will! Your playlist has recommendations from Jess G., Morgan G., Lindsay E., Emily, Laura, Riese, Crystal and me. It takes you from realization to saying goodbye — first sadly, then loudly — and finally to looking ahead to the rest of your undoubtedly happier life.

It Was Time to Go

Foundations – Kate Nash
The Good That Won’t Come Out – Rilo Kiley
First Love – Adele
Music When The Lights Go Out – The Libertines
Good Woman – Cat Power
Leaving – Indigo Girls
Already Gone – Kelly Clarkson
Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right – Bob Dylan
Get Gone – Fiona Apple
Call Your Girlfriend – Robyn
Bye Bye Bye – N Sync
Nice to Know You – Incubus
Oh What a Day – Ingrid Michaelson
Tomorrow Will Be Better, I Swear – Stars
Next Girl – The Black Keys


Add your favorite break-up tracks in the comments below!

Want to suggest a playlist theme? Hit Crystal up on Formspring and someone of the team will make it for you.

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lnj has written 310 articles for us.


    • Zomg, yes. Also, “Leave you behind” from S-K, which has probably the most beautifully sad, underrated opening line ever, in my humble opinion: “I wonder how you looked, the day you were erased, to look down at your heart and watch it fade.”

      (OK, just listen, because otherwise I’d just quote the whole song:

  1. my knee-jerk reaction to add on is “gimme one reason” by Tracy Chapman, but that really has more to do with not wanting to top anymore, I think

  2. Adele’s “Someone Like You” made me cry my eyes out after my break-up.

    How about break-up movies? I’d like to see a break-up-movie-list! <3

  3. When I was but a lass, I sent my ex a mixed tape (that is how old I am) I broke up with her & the songs were a little bitter – top of the list was Sandy Shaw’s “Girl don’t come”

  4. “Heart in Your Heartbreak”-Pains of Being Pure At Heart
    “Madder Red” – Yeasayer
    “Volcano”-Damien Rice

    All wonderful. All helped heal me (almost).

  5. Laneia, you’re amazing. I just having one of those terrible, angry, I-hate-not-being-happy-with-my-own-choice relapses. Truly wonderful timing.

  6. wow. um how perfect. i’m actually going through a lesbodivorce right now aka the end of an 8 year LTR and i needed some music.

    so yay and it sucks.

    and i wonder what the point of it all was/is and if i’ll be ok all by myself…

    blah sometimes i wish autostraddle was all of you in my living room.

  7. “Oh Maker” by Janelle Monae is always at the top of my list! I still listen to it whenever I have feelings regarding any previous relationships. Janelle Monae makes everything better, always.

  8. How about basically anything by La Roux?

    “I’m Not Your Toy”
    “As if by Magic”


  9. This is incredible timing!
    I’ve been listening to Adele’s new CD lately and just keep thinking: “Listen Adele, I’m sure it was really hard for him too but sometimes it just doesn’t work out! he does remember, but he had to go!”

  10. Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Modern Romance / Skeletons

    Lykke Li – Complaint Department (pretty good, this one)

    John Lennon – Mind Games

    Ani DiFranco – Rock, Paper, Scissors

    bonus (better for the break-up-ee): Jeff Buckley – Forget Her

    Btw, hi5 to whoever chose the songs from Cat Power, Bob Dylan and The Black Keys from your list :)

  11. I don’t think i’ve ever commented here before but:
    this was so so good, and so so needed.
    thanks x

  12. Sarah Harmer – Around This Corner
    You Say Party! – Monster
    Karen O – If You’re Gonna Be Dumb, You Gotta Be Tough
    Diamond Rings – All Yr Songs
    The Sadies – Another Year Again
    Gold Motel – Don’t Send The Searchlights

    Sleater Kinney’s One More Hour made me cry all winter long in 2010/11.

  13. What’s a Girl to Do? – Bat for Lashes
    Wrecking Ball – Chris Pureka
    Alone Eventually – Stephanie Bosch
    PJ Harvey – Evol

  14. throwing more sleater kinney out there – the song good things has really been doing it for me today.

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