hey everyone. I thought it would be fun to start a thread where we can all list bands and CD's that are great for coffee bar atmosphere's. I'll start with a few favorites:

Sam Prekop - Who's Your New Professor
Wilco - Sky Blue Sky
Peter Bjorn & John - Writers Block
The Shins - Wincing the Night Away

- Matt

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and also, I didnt check, but if nobody put "The Doors" thus far, I'll be REALLY dissapointed.
Or Fugazi, for that matter.
Stroke 9- Nasty Little Thoughts
Four Tet (anything, common guys I know I'm not the first one on that train...)
Ben Gibbard here and there
Logh (look em up)
Definitely Band of Horses, good suggestion
Collective Soul (oh yeah, I went there...)
Daphne Loves Derby
Death Cab (I know... Ben Gibbard again, but his stuff is really quite good...)
Flaming Lips (how has this one gotten missed?)
The Hives
John Legend
Modest Mouse (kinda sorta... very hit and miss)
RHCP (sometimes)
Sick Puppies (again, sometimes)
Silverchair (not yet mentioned? huh?)
Smashing Pumpkins (last one on the "sometimes")
Something Corporate (personal favorite)
Silversun Pickups
Thee More Shallows (look em up, too)

And that's quickly what I have for you. 80's throwbacks are also always a plus. Can't beat Thunderstruck during a rush, hahaha.
Sera Cahoone – in addition to being a perfect, mellow, alt-country goddess, she's also a local Seattle barista.

Bon Iver (download his song "skinny love" and you'll listen to it all day long)
Mason Jennings
Slaid Cleaves
Newton Faulkner
Jeremy Fisher
Louis Armstrong is always good
Amy Seeley(Gravel Lines)
Iron and Wine

The Velvet Underground - Sunday Morning
The The - This Is The Day
Yo La Tengo - Center Of Gravity
Calexico - Ballad Of Cable Hogue
Sea Wolf - The Cold, The Dark And The Silence
Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out Of This Country
Tribalista - Ja Sei Namorar
Belle and Sebastian - Ease Your Feet In The Sea
Zeep - Keep An Eye On Love
SeaBear - Teenage Kicks (The Undertones cover)
The Church - Under The Milky Way
Kings Of Convenience - Singing Softly To Me
Question: this music all of you have listed here... this is good background coffee house music? for your customer's likes? and it goes with your atmosphere?
or you playing for you and your emploies or your customers (this is on another thread on Bx).

Well, I know I may be older then a good number of you and maybe that is why I have not heard of so many of the bands listed here. My music tastes have changes so much over the years from the best of the 80's and early 90's (that was 'my time') to Contemporary Christian and Christian rock to Celtic and Renaissance music.

I love Wm Alan Ross, Empty Hats, The Roses, Ed Miller. But I guess most of you have not heard of them... Gaelic Storm, Albannach, Tannahill Weavers. Steven Curtis Chapman, Sierra, Carolyn Arends, Mercy Me, Casting Crowns, Rush of Fools...

Different generation; different region of the country; different customer base?

I can see I need to broaden my listening horizons. I'll do my homework. Thanks to all.
...anyone here just put some favs into pandora and let it play?
I think this thread has really proved why baristas should not have the reigns of what is played in the shop. Reason being is that musical taste is a very hot button for everyone. It is a very personal thing! People get very defensive about it and some people get real snooty about it. It could very well cause tension between baristas with different taste.

Furthermore, you end up with too many different styles. Not to say that various styles of music is not a plus, but the last thing that you want is for a customer to not enjoy your cafe when so and so is playing his favorite music. Just like you need every barista to prepare the drinks the same way, you need to have the same musical continuity.

You need to create an identity and keep it consistent. If your overall vibe is Indie, so be it. If it is Christian Rock then, people who like that style will gravitate to your shop. Same with Jazz, Blues, etc. Let your customers know what to expect. I really feel that the owner or manager should be in charge of this aspect of the cafe
I got spoiled at my last shop. We had different "zones" (as most shops do) but one zone was for just behind the counter. Totally different music was being played through different speakers for customers to listen to vs. music behind the counter for the staff to listen to (although sometimes it was the same). It depended on the time of day as to what was playing for the customers (as the customers changed from older to younger throughout the day, so did music that we figured would appeal to them, so we would play whatever we figured people would want to hear). But behind the counter?... that was all whoever was working. I was lucky enough to have a solid base of baristas that enjoyed the same music genres as I did, so everything blended together nicely. But yeah, Jay, you are right on. I think consistency is key. I worked at a shop that would play everything from pop, to hip-hop, to techno, to indie to country (yup... even country). It was all over the place and even I didn't like it.
In response to Jay,
So true, man. Many a time I have walked into a cafe early in the mornin, to be further awoke by blaring Floggin Molly. Now, I have nothing against Floggin Molly, but there is a certain time and demographic for any time of music. I wouldn't play Danzig for the lawyers and grandparents (even if they might be familiar or like that music normally; just playing the odds), but for the late night/younger "more rowdy" crowd, I would do so in a heartbeat.
Even though I dislike it, in Temple we have a satellite radio, with the option of pluggin in our iPods (with approved playlists). I have a bunch of friends who play really beautiful O.G. jazz stuff, and I've been throwin that on more recently.
I don't know if anybody has said Mute Math yet but yea for them.....

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