Image description: An imitation of glitching screen with a rewind button in the center, titled Music Column 2023 Rewind. End ID
Image description: An imitation of glitching screen with a rewind button in the center, titled Music Column 2023 Rewind. End ID

Illustration by Yana Peeva

Music Column: 2023 Wrapped (With a Bow)

In the spirit of Spotify Wrapped, this week’s Music Column is dedicated to reminiscing about the past year in sounds.

Dec 11, 2023

Nov. 29 marked the International Shame Day, a.k.a. the Spotify Wrapped day of 2023. This year, the music streaming company produced a new bundle of visuals to represent the passage of time in music. Fan favorites were the artists’ “Thank you” video notes, the location recommendation based on your music preferences, and the music calendar with, quite frankly, questionable statistics on how much you’ve listened to a particular artist each month of the year. To appeal to the melomaniac community among the NYU Abu Dhabi students, this Music Column will attempt to recreate the Spotify Wrapped format, but more accurate.
Location Based on Your Music Preferences
The location is obviously Abu Dhabi. More precisely, Saadiyat Island. And if we have to get into the specifics, your dorm room. Because, let’s face it, nobody actually cares about each other’s music tastes. When it comes to our playlists, we are all snobs and gatekeepers. Therefore, the only time you really listened to music and enjoyed it to the fullest was not at any East or West Forum national SIG event, but in your dorm, with your headphones, while staring blankly at problem sets and the blinking bar on a Google Doc. Based on your location, some other soundscapes you might have enjoyed include creepy birds chirping, campus cats fighting in the alley between A4 and A5, and hushed gossip at the Palms. Your most listened-to playlist is definitely D2’s selection of pop hits from every era, with a special and regular rotation of NYUAD’s own Jiire Smith, with his full discography, as of now, back to back.
Music Calendar
Your Spotify Wrapped may have shown a variety of moods and tracked how they changed through the year, but if you really think about it, that is not true. If there is one thing constant in an NYUAD student’s life, it is anxiety. Therefore, there is never any variety in terms of mood, it is always either the ultra-sad songs or the Beast-mode playlist to sustain the grind. The artists may vary, but Mitski, Laufey, Lana Del Rey, Conan Grey, and Hozier sneak into everybody’s sad music rewinds while Skrillex, Travis Scott, Drake, and Doja Cat take care of the energy boost. Somehow, Taylor Swift and rain sounds bridge the gap between the two.
Thank You
I am not your favorite artist this year, nor will I ever be your favorite columnist. But a “thank you” is still due now that we have officially marked a full 365 days of the music column’s revival. The feedback is always much appreciated, but I admit — the Music Column will never get less experimental and more pop-y. For recommendations of that caliber, I am sure the Spotify Daily Mixes have it covered. Until next year, listen with no shame to whatever and whoever you like. At the end of the day, what is scarier is the amount of personal information we give out for free every day to strangers, and not the fact that you listened to “cardigan” 63 times in a day.
Yana Peeva is Senior Columns Editor. Email them at
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