What Would Be Your Perfect Housecleaning Playlist?


If you were cleaning all day and needed a strong list of 20 songs to put on repeat mode, what would be your top choices?


43 Responses to “What Would Be Your Perfect Housecleaning Playlist?”

  1. texan Says:

    One that I MUST have is Pam Tillis’ “You Can’t Have a Good Time Without Me!” Just thinking of it brings on that closet cleaning frenzy for me. Odd reaction to music.

  2. jenfera Says:

    I am sticking with my original suggestion of The Commitments soundtrack, so here’s a list including most of the uptempo songs from that along with some of my other favorite “Rah! Rah!” type songs…

    From The Commitments:
    1. Mustang Sally
    2. Take Me To The River
    3. Destination: Anywhere
    4. Try A Little Tenderness (this suggestion has nothing to do with something Shelley doesn’t want to talk about! Seriously! I love this version.)
    5. Treat Her Right
    6. In The Midnight Hour

    Billy Joel:
    7. Only the Good Die Young
    8. I Go To Extremes

    9. 25 or 6 to 4 by Chicago

    10. Life Is A Highway by Tom Cochrane

    11. Ants Marching – Dave Matthews Band

    12. Get Over It – Eagles

    13. Bad Love – Eric Clapton

    14. Would I Lie To You? – Eurythmics

    15. Workin’ For A Livin’ – Huey Lewis & The News

    The Police:
    16. So Lonely
    17. Synchronicity I
    18. Synchronicity II

    20. Beautiful Day – U2

    18. Synchronicity

  3. jenfera Says:

    oopsie. Don’t know how 18 got in there twice.

  4. Dr. Bob Says:

    ooohhhh… must ponder.
    *has vague recollections of cleaning …*

  5. Jules Says:

    Songs to keep movin’ & groovin’ & on task –

    1. Rocks Off – Rolling Stones
    2. Everyday is a Holiday With You – Esthero w/Sean Lennon
    3. Get to You – Nikka Costa
    4. I Thank You – Sam & Dave
    5. Everyday People – Sly & The Family Stone
    6. C’mon C’mon – Stratocruiser (Dire Straits cover)
    7. Loving Cup – Rolling Stones
    8. Supermassive Black Hole – The Muse
    9. Freedom – George Michael
    10. Sweet Escape – Gwen Stefani
    11. Makes Me Wonder – Maroon 5
    12. Eye of the Tiger – Survivor
    13. She’s So Cold – Rolling Stones
    14. Ain’t That a Lotta Love – Taj Mahal
    15. All These Things That I’Ve Done – The Killers
    16. Bittersweet Symphony – The Verve
    17. No Way Out – D Generation
    18. Only a Fool – Marit Larsen
    19. Nothing But the Wheel – Peter Wolf w/Mick Jagger
    20. Driving at Night – The Jody Grind

  6. Shelley Says:

    okay, jules…the “eye of the tiger” reference had me crackin’ up. 😉

    great list, though.

    i think the nikka costa song could count for all 20 of mine. great song…so dang peppy.

    i also like a little brian setzer and cyndi lauper to get the blood pumpin’.

  7. leejolem Says:

    I am rebelling against this thread because I hate de-cluttering so much, but if forced to choose music to be tortured to:
    I Will Survive
    It’s Raining Men
    Boogie Wonderland
    Bat Outta Hell
    Paradise by the Dashboard Light
    Rubberband Man
    Stayin Alive
    Love Shack
    Play that Funky Music White Boy
    Give Me Tonight
    The Runaround
    Any Broadway tunes

  8. bjewel Says:

    I’m with you, Dr. Bob….Well, I need a dump truck, baby, to unload my room (stealing from Bob Dylan).
    I love your video choice!

  9. Jules Says:

    Shelley – I know I’m a nerd for the Eye of the Tiger but I can’t help it – I am Rocky when I hear that song & I can do anything (even clean) 🙂

  10. Jules Says:

    Also agree with Brain Setzer! Saw him 3 times within the span of a year & he rocks the house.

  11. Cahaba Lily Says:

    Rockabilly always motivates me when I’m cleaning.

    The Rockats – Make That Move

  12. rowan Says:

    Aw – I posted on the wrong thread! Colour my Kelly Clarkson response on the Magic Hat thread to be meant for here. Yeah, Cyndi Lauper fer sure, and maybe even Motorhead’s Ace of Spades and Iron Maiden’s for those really stubborn corners.

    West LA Gospel Choir – Shake Yourself Loose

    Kelly Clarkson…pretty much all of Breakaway

    The Police – Deathwish

    Sting – Englishman in New York

    Abba – Super Trouper

    Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel – Come up and see me, make me Smile

    Bowie – Space Odditty

    Bowie – Jean Jeanie

    The Proclaimers – 500 miles

    The Monkees – Sleepy Jean

    Motorhead – Ace of Spades

    Iron Maiden – Aces High

    Iron Maiden – Phantom of the Opera

    Lou Reed – Perfect Day

    Vivaldi – The Four Seasons

    You can see I need a lot of galvanising to clean, but they do work–quirky as some undoubtedly are :”) are. Davy Jones, take it away:

    Hey hey we’re da Monkbots
    Today we’re all cleanin’ around
    And we needs motivatin music
    To stop the work grindin us down

    (Sends Davey out with long shopping list of highly prominent, televised cleaning products. They work hard, so I don’t have to…hmm..sounds good!)

  13. Little Deb Says:

    I must be weird. The cd’s I always play when in a cleaning frenzy are

    Carole King – Tapestry (Natural Woman is the best)

    Kathy Mattea – Collection of Hits

    James Taylor – Greatest Hits

    Fleetwood Mac – The Dance

    I have to sing at the top of my lungs when doing the major cleaning thing, and I know all the words to all of the songs on these cd’s.

    I also have the Time/Life 70’s Music Explosion 5 cd set and this stuff does wonders for getting me motivated also. Graduating high school in 77 (yes I’m old) makes all of these songs (even the corny ones) great sing along/memory stuff.

  14. leejolem Says:

    Jules mentioned Rocky–oh my gosh–the theme from Rocky would be awesome. I am envisioning Shelley in a gray sweatsuit running up and down the halls cheering with her arms in the air.

    Crowd chanting: Shell-ey, Shell-ey, Shell-ey!!

  15. Mr. Reality Says:


    Motivational tapes by Leeza Gibbons

  16. Julie Says:

    The Ramones will get your butt moving, Shells. Or most any of Prince’s early stuff. And might I also suggest Elvis Costello’s Get Happy, The Clash’s London Calling, and (I don’t know what the Monkbot party line is on this but here goes…) the Chris Daughtry album. It is my most favoritist CD to clean house to, really!

    Congrats on the garden. Be sure to use your herbs as often as you can for cooking, as frequent picking makes them happy and your dishes delicious.

  17. nolagirl Says:

    Recently, I’ve used the Mika CD as my cleaning helper. So upbeat, it gives me a skip in my step, cleaning toilets and all.

    Jules, I am an Eye of the Tiger fan too. It’s in rotation on my iPod for exercising. It’s just so … perfect for that! (it doesn’t hurt that my college alma mater is the Tigers, so it has that meaning behind it too). Shelley, do they have a song about bulldogs??? Just wonderin’….

  18. rowan Says:

    Nola – what about a bulldog singing? Awww.

  19. double d Says:

    I need to have a variety and different tempos, otherwise my ADDness takes over and I get bored and distracted, therefore leaving the dust bunnies to live another day (or month).

    So, here is my House-Cleaning Smorgasbord

    1. Lovely Day – Bill Withers
    2. Mardi Gras Mambo #5 – Rockin’ Doopsie
    3. That’s Life – Frank Sinatra
    4. Margaritaville – Jimmy Buffett
    5. Use Me (Live) – Taylor Hicks
    6. Can’t Hurry Love – Phil Collins or The Supremes
    7. Home – Marc Broussard
    8. Find Another You – John Mayer
    9. Queen Bee – Barbra Streisand
    10. This is the House that Jack Built – Aretha Franklin
    11. Bad to the Bone – George Thorogood
    12. No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problem – Kenny Chesney
    13. Multiply – Jamie Lidell
    14. Bobby McGee – Janis Joplin
    15. Grits Ain’t Groceries – Wet Willie
    16. Music of the Night (Phantom) – Michael Crawford
    17. Swanee River Rock – Ray Charles
    18. Sweet Pea – Amos Lee
    19. Walkin’ After Midnight – Patsy Cline
    20. Shuckin’ the Corn – Ray LaMontagne

  20. double d Says:

    NOLAGirl — I believe this says it all….

    Bulldog Fight Song



  21. jenfera Says:

    Rowan, I love your list!! I need to delete something off of mine and add The Proclaimers.

  22. Connie8 Says:

    Is this a contest for the strangest and lamest suggestion? I sincerely hope so. I don’t use it any more because I don’t have it on cd, but in the old days I used to put on my “Hooked on Classics” tapes for cleaning. For some reason I couldn’t stop whenever I heard Bach and Mozart with a beat.

    Can I still come here?

  23. jenfera Says:

    Hooked on Classics!!!!! Holy crap, forgot all about that! Haven’t heard it in forever. I say Connie stays!

    Anyone remember what that other one was called that had all the Beatles songs in it? Hooked on what?

  24. rowan Says:

    Connie stays fer sure. Can’t remember the Beatles thing either, Jen. Thanks for likin my list!

    Just noticed I only have 15 listings…unless I can count the Kelly cd. Think I might be tempted to spend more time dancing than cleaning! Release of endorphins, tho…always good to have in the bank when cleaning raises its ugly head. Here is another fab jumpin tune the first single I ever bought. Thought Plastic Bertrand was a dangerous punk rocker at the time, but looking back at him now, he was very sweet! Awww.

  25. Theresa Says:

    Pump up music must have a really catchy intro. Last winter I made a playlist for hockey games (music to play in-between play). This is the list, plus a couple of additions that wouldn’t have been appropriate for youth hockey ;).

    1. Bittersweet Symphony
    2. Touch of Grey – Grateful Dead
    3. Fly – Sugar Ray
    4. Born to Run – Bruce Springsteen
    5. Sweet Child O’Mine – Guns n’ Roses
    6. MMMBop – Hanson
    7. Crazy – Gnarls Barkley
    8. Feel Good Inc – Gorillaz
    9. California Dreamin’ (techno version) – Royal Gigolos
    10. Come Sail Away – Styx
    11. Shout – Tears for Fears
    12. Mr. Blue Sky – ELO
    13. Blue Collar Man – Styx
    14. Take the Long Way Home – Supertramp (or someone else…)
    15. Always Something There to Remind Me – Naked Eyes
    16. Bang the Drum – Todd Rundgren
    17. Do Ya? – ELO
    18. Surrender – Cheap Trick
    19. White Room – Eric Clapton
    20. Take On Me – Aha

    Alternately, when I’ve got something to do, I love to play a collection of songs from a live concert, such as one of Taylor Hicks (Nov and Dec 05 come to mind) or many of the other live concerts available by many artists. I find the time goes really quickly.

  26. Theresa Says:

    Sorry for any duplications. I’m at work and I think things are getting filtered. Oh well…

  27. jenfera Says:


    Stars on 45!

  28. Jules Says:

    double d – great songs! I’m afraid I’d be more tempted to sit outside on my swing with a cocktail than clean though – I guess noone said cocktails & cleaning can’t go together 🙂

    If I could add a bonus track to my playlist it would have to be from the Streets of Fire soundtrack which I had on vinyl as a kid & have on CD now. I sooo wanted to be Diane Lane. This song gets me going big time.

  29. Shelley Says:

    okay…i’ve been swamped…but here’s my list
    rockin’ the suburbs – ben folds
    what it takes – aerosmith
    one angry dwarf – ben folds (pretty much the entire whatever and ever amen album)
    hard to handle – black crowes
    toxic – brit brit
    jerk it out – the ceasars
    dreaming of you – the corals
    right around the corner – detroit cobras
    heartache tonight – eagles
    girlfriend – matthew sweet
    back to the life – spoon
    my doorbell – white stripes
    candyman – christina aguilera
    happy talk – bloody mary from south pacific
    sister kate – ditty bops
    so says i – the shins
    sir duke – stevie wonder
    til i get to you – nikka costa
    suddenly i see – kt tunstall
    amie – pure prarie league

  30. Theresa Says:

    Shelley, my list got caught in filters. When I try to submit it says I already submitted that comment. Can you check tonight?

    Oh, I definitely want to add Sir Duke to my list!

  31. Theresa Says:

    never mind…

  32. Shelley Says:

    MMMBop….good call Theresa. 😉

    love that song

  33. Jules Says:

    Shelley – now you’re crackin’ me up with the Happy Talk!

    Love that White Stripes song. It was very fitting for me last weekend. Friday I ran around like a lunatic cleaning my place from top to bottom cause lots of relatives were in town for my brother’s wedding. I thought MAYBE some of them would want to see my place. Didn’t happen 😦

  34. rowan Says:

    Lee – what a great cheerful dancin list! Love all those songs.

    I have four songs left…must include this one. Love this vid!

    Can’t not pay tribute to the great Freddie Mercury, so will choose Killer Queen and Don’t Stop Me Now.

    Number twenty is a nice memory from my teaching past. Discussing Steinbeck’s “The Red Pony” with a class of twelve year-olds, I was focussing on the mysterious Old Gitano who comes to the Tiflin family ranch, and rides off into the mountains on their ancient horse. “Where did he come from? Where did he go?” I asked solemnly, keeping to the touching tone of the chapter. As soon as the words were out of my mouth, however, I was hit by a wall of unexpected noiseful song, “Where did he come from Cottoneye Joe?” It was number one at the time! It completely cracked me up.:D

  35. leejolem Says:

    Rowan, you should have broken into song and dance for the class. I’m sure it would have stuck in their wee little brains, and they would never have forgotten The Red Pony or their crazy teacher Miss Rowan. How long ago did you teach? I bet you were a great teacher and the kids a lots of fun. I don’t think I would have the patience for 12 yr olds.

    I lerve Cottoneye Joe almost as much as Apple Jack by Dolly Parton.

  36. texan Says:

    I think I’ll spin the soundtrack to Mary Poppins…might lure her in.

    Still laughing about that one a day later.


  37. rowan Says:

    Hey Lee! Used to teach High School English but not since I had my son in 1999. I am still writing that date on cheques though, which kinda worries me. There must be some sort of signigificance to this strange aphasia-bubble, but goodness-knows what. Maybe I just bought more stuff in 1999.

    Yep, they were a fun class. I put them into groups after we’d finished reading, to discuss the criticism aimed at the novel that the title doesn’t really suit, the colt in question meeting an untimely end half-way through the book. They were to come up with a title of their own, which we would all vote on. I’m afraid to say that the resounding winner was none other than, “The Dead Pony.” Not highly original, I suppose, but a nice take on the omnipresent gloom. One girl kept pestering me as to why Mrs Tiflin didn’t run off with Billy Buck, cos he was jolly. O_o yep – not a class I’ll easily forget:D

    Must go listen to Apple Jack. Goodnight to all the Monkbot sisters. Have really enjoyed sharing your songs.

  38. shrewspeaks Says:

    Since I hate to clean and do it rarely…

    The Sounds Of Silence

  39. Julie Says:

    Shelley, I love your list. Matthew Sweet, Girlfriend. How could I omit that?

    And I have a secret crush on Jack White. Is that bad, do you think?

  40. Shelley Says:

    Julie…fangirlyness is strictly forbidden here at Monkbot…but if it weren’t…I’d tell you that I thought Jack White had pretty cute thighs in this vid.

    But since it is…removes wet fish from stack and takes careful aim at self…

  41. Julie Says:

    I looked for thighs, but all I saw was Jack and Meg moving quickly through a triangle…over and over…

    Meg rocks. That doesn’t get a fish slap, does it?

  42. double d Says:

    Wow. NO mention on the Bulldog Fight Song?!?

    I am definitely losing my touch.

  43. Laurita Says:

    FYI – A bit of contemporary cultural serendipity for Shelley and Theresa:
    Jordin Sparks said on American Idol that “MMMBop” by Hanson is her favorite song.
    P.S. I got my sorely-neglected kitchen and pantry cleaned recently to (sing-along!):

    1. (a little mixed-blast from the past)- Michael McDonald’s “Motown” CDs

    (i.e. McDonald and Ashford&Simpson perform “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” : http://youtube.com/watch?v=43LER9l-Ogo )

    2. “Dreamgirls” soundtrack CD
    ( i.e. – the now ‘classic’ J.Hudson–
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=sMsYg_tACZQ )

    3. Robert Randolph & The Family Band – all CDs! – favorites are “Colorblind” + “Unclassified”…
    ( i.e. “Ain’t Nothin’ Wrong With That…”
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=JllmLlz-UP4 )

    and if RRFB don’t have you in motion, time to see your local witchdoctor 😉

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