Best Minnesota Songs for Sleepless Nights


Whether your sleeplessness is caused by a medical condition or just too much on your mind, it’s a force that can seem insurmountable. Lying in bed, waiting for your eyes to close, your body to relax, your thoughts to drift away…

Sometimes it just doesn’t happen. (And you don’t want to end up looking like Ed Norton did in Fight Club.)

But whatever the reason you’re awake while the rest of the city sleeps, these songs by Minnesota artists are your perfect companion; a loyal bedmate for the nights you’re left alone; a simple beauty that reminds us waking life can still be better than dreams.

Relax/Fall Asleep

Lie back, arms behind your head, and let sleep take you away with Elskavon, “Anda” – Chris Bartels, who goes by Elskavon when he’s creating his elegant and simply beautiful compositions, seems to know better than any of us the nature of calm relaxation. The whole album Reveal is good to play at night. “Anda” manages to be the best of them: something that will put you to bed so very peacefully, and then keep you up days later thinking about it.

Bon Iver, “The Wolves (Act I & II)” – So he is a Wisconsinite. But the Twin Cities was certainly a springboard for the Eau Claire-based artist, and he made his name here. And to fall asleep, his slow melodies and cloud-like singing voice may make you feel as though you’re sleeping already; next thing you know it’s morning. Just call this song a lullaby and leave it at that.

Work, Work, Work

Those emails aren’t going to read themselves. You’re up so you might as well get some work done.

Bae Tigre, “Now or Never” – The haunting vocals and the smooth synth melodies have an ethereal quality that might put you in a dreamlike state late at night. But, backed by a measured beat that you can’t help but nod your head to, you won’t slump over at your desk until you’re good and ready.

Har-di-Har, “we scare eachother” – Everyone else’s eyes are closed. But you’re up. You want inspiration. You want the world to know who you are. Har-di-Har’s eclectic sound gives you that anything is possible feeling, with simple instruments and vocals producing an incredibly full and satisfying sound. It’s quirky and fun and perfect for background music while you get things done. Also, props for using Schmidt Artists Lofts for the video.

I’m Awake. Might As Well Dance.

Or if you’re the type who likes roam the streets late at night, these are the songs to roam to.

Allan Kingdom, “Know About It” – St. Paul’s Allan Kingdom has toured with Kanye West, and collaborated with Flume for the track “You Know” also featuring Raekwon. He brings a style and grace to Minnesota hip hop, as well as conscious feel for modernity. This offbeat hip-hop banger has a quality to it that seems tailor-made for post-sunset listening.

Almost anything produced by Cardo – The St. Paul-based producer left the city behind a few years ago to produce for everyone from Kendrick Lamar (“GOD”) to Travis Scott (“Goosebumps”). But he still claims MN and we’re happy to return the favor. Next time you’re up too late, throw on “THat Part” featuring Kanye West. Cardo’s eerie, but certified sexy beat lowkey steals the show, and you’ll forget you ever wanted to go to sleep in the first place.

Still awake? So are we. Read this article next to explore more Minnesota music news and information: MnSpin is your new source for free music by local artists

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Born and raised in the suburbs of Saint Paul, MN, Brandon has immersed himself into being a local and sustainable advocate for delicious living. Working for the best Chef’s in the Twin Cities before becoming the Residence Chef at the Minnesota Governor’s Residence and personal Chef for the Zimmern family. Foraging, eating, parenting, writing, cycling, consulting, catering and hosting pop up dinners are what his free time entails.