Music is the soundtrack to our lives. As children, we’re rocked to sleep by lullabies. As adults, songs attach themselves to significant mile markers: a first love, a memorable vacation, or when a child is born. Rhythm and melody hold a magical power that opens up the joys, hopes, scares, and challenges of growing older and aging. Through song, we tap into the universal world of aging and feel a part of something that is larger than ourselves. Like Christmas and tax day, birthdays are guaranteed to come around once a year. Most of us can’t wait for them when we’re young, though perhaps we quietly begin to fear them as we get a little older. As 27 makes it way to knock on my door later this month, I’m reminded of how I dreamed of my late 20s as an adolescent — and how wild my 20s have been to date. Whatever the circumstances, though, I still believe birthdays are a cause for celebration. Here are some of my favorite tunes to reflect on as I come up on another birthday. Hope you enjoy this soundtrack as you unwrap your presents and indulge in way too much cake & booze.