Whatever happens this summer, our 2020 research season will prove to be like no other. That is why the whole team has built a playlist to soundtrack our summer, so we can all remember the sights, the smells, the vistas, and, of course, the sounds of the world’s freshwater laboratory, even when we are not there.




Everyone chose songs that depict the work that we do, the place we work, the memories we have made, or just those by our favourite artists from across Manitoba, northwestern Ontario (which we call home), or anywhere around the Great Lakes.


So go ahead and download our playlist (from the links above), turn on (your mobile device or stereo), tune in, rock out, and imagine you’re out at the lakes…


Walk Out on the Water by Royal Canoe (chosen by Lauren Timlick)



“This song makes me think about walking out onto the ice during winter sampling.” Lauren Timlick


Black Flies by Ben Howard (chosen by Lauren Timlick)

River Run by James Keelaghan (chosen by Lee Hrenchuk)

Time by Raine Hamilton (chosen by Lee Hrenchuk)

Wasted by William Prince (chosen by Geoffrey Gunn)



When I Write My Master’s Thesis by John K. Samson (chosen by Geoffrey Gunn)

Red Lake Shores by JD Edwards Band (chosen by Paul Fafard)

City of Lakes by Matt Mays (chosen by Paul Fafard)


Group of people with back to camera watch people on a stage on a trailer sitting in a straight line
“This song is one of the first songs I heard played on Variety Night in my first year at the Experimental Lakes Area when I started as a summer student in 2011. I always think of the site when I hear it.” Paul Fafard explains that he heard one of his choices at Variety Night—an annual night for our staff and students to show off their talents and let loose.

Autumn Rain by Slow Leaves (chosen by Marina Puzyreva)

Fables by Red Moon Road (chosen by Marina Puzyreva)




Fish on the Sand by Allah-Las (chosen by Matthew McCandless)

Name Written in Water by Cass McCombs (chosen by Matthew McCandless)

Fishin’ In The Dark by Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (chosen by Vince Palace)

Smokestack Lightning by Howlin’ Wolf (chosen by Vince Palace)


“Raine is one of my oldest friends – we met in grade 2! I spent many weekends at her cabin in the Whiteshell growing up, and I know that freshwater lakes and water health overall are super important to her. ”

Lee Hrenchuk chose two very personal favourites for her picks, including Time by childhood friend Raine Hamilton.


Tamarack by Jesse Matas (chosen by Michael Paterson)

Burn On by Randy Newman (chosen by Michael Paterson)


“I chose this song because it reminds of why we do what we do. The Cuyahoga River runs through Cleveland and was so polluted that it caught fire several times. Burn On was written in 1972, shortly after a large fire on the river in 1969. Outrage about the fires on the Cuyohoga River helped stimulate the establishment of the US EPA and the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. Since the 1970s, the river has been extensively cleaned up, showing that progress can be made, if we make the effort.” Michael Paterson


The Mosquito by The Doors (chosen by John Neall)

The Blackfly Song by Wade Hemsworth (chosen by John Neall)


“Contrary to what Cass proclaims in this song, you can step in the same river twice. Our field crews stand in the same stream time and time again each year. “


Matthew McCandless, our Executive Director, explains his very pragmatic choice of Name Written in Water by Cass McCombs for the World’s Freshwater Playlist.

I Want A Pancake by Al Simmons (chosen by Richard Grosshans)

Camp Wiganishie by Al Simmons (chosen by Richard Grosshans)

Manitou Api by The Red Shadow Singers (chosen by Dilber Yunus)

Fishies by The Cat Empire (chosen by Lauren Hayhurst)

Your Rocky Spine by Great Lake Swimmers (chosen by Lauren Hayhurst)


“Why did I choose these songs? From exceptionally talented Manitoban singer-songwriters on fleeting seasons, fleeting emotions, and beauty of the present moment.”

Marina Puzyreva doesn’t mince her words explaining what inspired her two contributions to this playlist.


Fish and Whistle by John Prine (chosen by Roger Mollot)

When Can I See You Again by Scott Nolan (chosen by Roger Mollot)

In a Town This Size by John Prine and Dolores Keane (chosen by Ken Sandilands)

Lake Fever by The Tragically Hip (chosen by Ken Sandilands)

Smokes ‘N Chicken by The Perpetrators (chosen by Sonya Havens)

Steady, As She Goes by The Raconteurs (chosen by Sonya Havens)


“This song was a favourite of the students over the last couple of years. It was played often and loudly.” Sonya Havens


Juniper by Begonia (chosen by Madeline Stanley)

Northern Air by Elliott Brood (chosen by Madeline Stanley)




Fussin’ by Royal Canoe (featuring Begonia) (chosen by Savana Theodore-Maraj)

Old Pine by Ben Howard (chosen by Savana Theodore-Maraj)


“That feeling after a long day at the beach and right before dinner when you’re just relaxing is exactly what this song is. It also makes me think of driving home just as the sun is beginning to make its way down as you’re packing up from the lake/beach because of the slow but upbeat guitar.”

Savana Theodore-Maraj


Don’t Make Me Hold Your Hand by Lake Street Dive (chosen by Pauline Gerrard)

Nothing’s Gonna Harm You by JP Hoe (chosen by Pauline Gerrard)

Here Comes the Night by Streetheart (chosen by Cyndy Desjardins)

Lake of Fire (live) by Nirvana (chosen by Cyndy Desjardins)


“I know this dates me, but I remember when Nirvana played their live acoustic set on MTV and what a huge deal that was. And acoustic Nirvana just makes me think of sitting around a campfire as a teenager, so that’s why I chose that song. ” Cyndy Desjardins


Bongo Bong by Manu Chau (chosen by Michael Rennie)

Dirty Denim by The Donnas (chosen by Michael Rennie)

En El Muelle de San Blas (live) by Maná (chosen by Sumeep Bath)

Luna by The Smashing Pumpkins (chosen by Sumeep Bath)





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