18 Songs for Your Ultimate Sukkot Playlist

The vibe of this Jewish harvest holiday evokes music by Taylor Swift, Flo Rida, Bob Dylan and more.

I love a themed playlist. There are few things that get me as energized as “italian cinema morning” or Barilla’s (yes, the pasta company has a Spotify page) Mixtape Spaghetti. And honestly, there is probably no Jewish holiday more perfect for a playlist than Sukkot. So I made one! From the four species to shimmy shaking to stargazing to the concept of home, the vibe of this holiday evokes music by Taylor Swift, Flo Rida, Bob Dylan and more.

Whether you’re dining in the sukkah with friends and ushpizin, or having a chill moment alone in the child’s play tent you’re calling a temporary hut, hopefully these songs will get you in the fall harvest mood. And, if you like this, definitely check out Hey Alma’s Ultimate Yom Kippur playlist — I wonder what holiday we’ll set to music next.

Stream the Sukkot playlist here!

1. “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift

I may not be a Swiftie, but I absolutely had to start this playlist with “Shake It Off.” May you always and forever think of these lyrics when holding a lulav and etrog: “Baby, I’m just gonna shake, shake, shake, shake, shake / I shake it off, I shake it off.” 

2. “My House” by Flo Rida

If I were you, I’d have this song queued up to play the exact moment your friends enter the sukkah. These lyrics are literally so inviting: “Welcome to my house / Baby, take control now / We can’t even slow down / We don’t have to go out.”

3. “Lemon” by N.E.R.D. (feat. Rihanna)

Yes, I know that the lemon in “Lemon” is a car, not an actual lemon or glorified lemon, aka an etrog. (Is that a world record for number of times “lemon” is used in a sentence?) Still, this song is such a bop, especially Rihanna’s verse: “I get it how I live it / I live it how I get (wait, wait a minute) / Count the motherfuckin’ digits (wait, wait a minute) / I pull up with a lemon (wait, wait a minute) /Not ’cause she ain’t livin’ (wait, wait a minute) / It’s just your eyes get acidic.” (Plus, now I can’t stop imagining Rihanna pulling up to a sukkah with an etrog.)

4. “Temporary Home” by Carrie Underwood

Carrie Underwood’s “Temporary Home” might not be as catchy as her song “Jesus Take the Wheel” but it’s definitely more appropriate for this Jewish holiday. Ignorning the Christiany undertones, these lines are tailor-made for a holiday about impermanent huts: “This was just a stop, on the way to where I’m going / I’m not afraid because I know this was / My temporary home.”

5. “Rain on Me” by Lady Gaga, Ariana Grande

A song about rain might seem counterintuitive for a Sukkot playlist. But, this is a harvest holiday after all, and crops can’t thrive without rain. So like Lady Gaga and Ariana sing, “I’d rather be dry, but at least I’m alive / Rain on me, rain, rain.”

6. “willow” by Taylor Swift

On Sukkot, we are supposed to wave four species together. The etrog (or citron) is one, and the lulav comprises the three others — branches from a date palm, myrtle tree and willow tree. So naturally, this lyric has the most Jewish fall vibe: “Life was a willow and it bent right to your wind.”

7. “Willow” by Renee Rapp


No, I couldn’t pick just one song about willows. Sorry! This one has a few lyrics which make sense for Sukkot: “Willow, I’ll cry for you / Don’t have to use your own tears / Just to grow your own roots” and “And there’s a whole lot of rain / But there’s a hole in the roof.”

8. “Froot” by Marina and the Diamonds

It’s undeniable that Sukkot is an extremely fruity holiday. We shake the etrog when saying the prayers and decorate our temporary dwellings with all varieties of fruits. There are plenty of lyrics about nature’s candy in “Froot” but these strike me as the most fun for Sukkot: “It’s summer time and I hang on the vine / They’re gonna make me into sweet red wine / Hanging around like a fruit on a tree / Waiting to be picked, come on cut me free.”

9. “Dream a Little Dream of Me” by The Mamas & The Papas

There are quite a few laws as to what constitutes a kosher sukkah. In terms of roofing a sukkah should be a material like branches or reeds and should allow both shade and sun — meaning, at night one should be able to see the night sky through the roof. Choice lyric: “Stars shining bright above you.”

Note: The Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong rendition of this song is also acceptable (and beautiful) for Sukkot. I just love any opportunity to include Jewish icon Cass Elliott.

10. “Come On Over” by Christina Aguilera

We can only assume Christina wrote this song when she was inviting people over to her sukkah. Exhibit A: “Hey boy, don’t you know? / I’ve got something goin’ on, yes I do / All my friends are gonna come / Gonna party all night long, ooh yeah.”

11. “Harvest Moon” by Neil Young*

Sukkot always begins on a full moon, making these lyrics perfect for the harvest festival: “But there’s a full moon risin’ / Let’s go dancin’ in the light.” Thanks, Neil Young!

*Neil Young’s music is not available on Spotify but we had to include anyway!

12. “Shake Your Groove Thing” by Peaches & Herb

The Sukkot lyrics: “Shake it, shake it / Shake your groove thing” (Groove thing = lulav, duh.)

13. “Wandering” by James Taylor

Did you know that Sukkot is a pilgrimage holiday? “According to rabbinic tradition, these flimsy sukkot [Hebrew for huts] represent the huts in which the Israelites dwelt during their 40 years of wandering in the desert after escaping from slavery in Egypt,” My Jewish Learning explains. Thus, these words can remind us of the 40 years the Israelites wandered: “I’ve been wanderin’ early late / From the New York City to the Golden Date / And it don’t look like / I’ll ever stop my wanderin’ / No, it don’t look like / I’ll ever stop my wanderin'”

14. “Blowin’ In the Wind” by Bob Dylan

Per MJL, “The walls of the sukkah may be made of any material, but must be sturdy enough to withstand an ordinary wind (Code of Jewish Law, Orach Chayim 630: 10).” Naturally, there’s a lot of Jewish discourse as to what that means exactly, and this lyric from Bob Dylan might or might not provide some clarity:“The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind.” 

15. “Shake It” by Metro Station

Pop punk will never die, and neither will my commitment to get as many songs about shaking as possible on this playlist! The Feast of Booths-related lyrics in this Metro Station classic? “Shake shake, shake shake, a-shake it.”

16. “Seeing Stars” by BØRNS

In a festival full of beauty, stargazing has to be one of the most beautiful parts. So we get another song on the playlist about stars! Because “Seeing Stars” by BØRNS is really about falling in love, maybe save this one for when your crush comes over to your sukkah! Choice lyrics: “You’ve got me seein’ stars, brighter than ever / Shining just like diamonds do / I know that in time it could be all ours, brighter than ever.”

17. “Shake It Out” by Florence + The Machine

Is this the last song about shaking? Nope! Sorry, but I had to include the Ulimate Mother Florence Welch on the Ultimate Sukkot Playlist. These lyrics qualify “Shake It Out” as a Sukkot song: “Shake it out, shake it out, shake it out, shake it out.”

18. “A House Is Not a Home” by Luther Vandross

Some may say I added this song to the playlist purely because Luther Vandross has the voice of an angel. While that’s not technically wrong, I do also think the lyrics nicely point out that a structure itself doesn’t make a permanent dwelling. (Looking at you, sukkahs.) Rather, it’s the people and the community that do. Choice lyric: “But a room is not a house and a house is not a home.”

Bonus: “Shake My Sillies Out”

From the man who brough us “Bananaphone,” there is also “Shake My Sillies Out.” It’s a good addition to the playlist for any little ones joining the sukkah party. (Or any adults who also need to “get their crazies out.” This is a judgment-free zone.) The made-for-Sukkot lyrics: “Gotta shake, shake, shake my sillies out.” 

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