It has been an undeniably rough week, from the Boston Marathon bombings to the devastating fertilizer plant explosion in West. In light of those and other tragedies, our news-inspired playlist begins with Eastmountainsouth's version of "Hard Times."
The easiest way to enjoy the playlist is to download Spotify, which is a free program. But even without it, you can still follow along. Here are this week's other selections:
Because Gov. Rick Perry surprised House Republicans by telling them he could support a budget that breaks the state's constitutional spending cap, we have The Highwaymen's "Take it To The Limit." And because, in a shocking role reversal, Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg is facing jail time for a DWI, next up is Tim Blake Nelson singing "In The Jailhouse Now."
State Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, led an apparently unsuccessful effort to recall a bill that the Senate had already passed. On the playlist in honor of his attempt is Cher's "If I Could Turn Back Time."
Embattled University of Texas System Regent Wallace Hall, in an exclusive interview with Texas Monthly, offered a "mea culpa" for not being more communicative with legislators. But he also made comments that angered members of a group called the Texas Coalition for Excellence in Higher Education. Our song selection for this story: "Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word," sung by Ray Charles and Elton John.
Speaking of college, a group released a new report with troubling statistics about the state's low completion rates. So, we have "College Kids," a song about students getting off track, by Reliant K.
State Sen. John Carona, R-Dallas, had to pull down his payday lending bill when some lawmakers said they wanted more time to discuss it. He said that the delay was just an attempt to kill the bill because "the industry has hired damn near every lobbyist in town to kill this bill." Essentially, he was accusing his colleagues of echoing the sentiments of Lefty Frizzell's "If You've Got the Money I've Got the Time."
The governor also announced an ad campaign in Illinois to lure businesses to Texas. So, we have a Lyle Lovett classic about the state's desire to welcome out-of-towners: "That's Right (You're Not From Texas)." Meanwhile, the city of Galveston took a big step toward finally beginning the rebuilding of public housing facilities demolished after Hurricane Ike, which we reference with Greg Brown's "Someday House."
We end with a shout-out to the Tribune's friends in Shinyribs, whose new album, Gulf Coast Museum, was released this week. It includes a song called "Texas Talking," which you might recognize as the theme song to the Texas Tribune TribCast.