I'm always in search of new tunes to start my mornings with, and despite how overexposed the "thing & chill" music scene is on YouTube, a nice lo-fi remix of my favorite game tunes gets my attention every time. So of course I was delighted that an entire album of chill Stardew Valley remixes exists and I've had this stuff on repeat every morning for a full month.
The "Stardew & Chill" album ($10 on Bandcamp) is a recent release through the GameChops label, whose other remixes and lofi-ifications (especially Zelda & Chill from 2018) you've likely seen cross your YouTube recommendations. Producer Evelyn "Coffee Date" Rivera has now released four chill gaming albums with GameChops since 2019, returning this year to fill the Stardew remix album with some exceptionally soothing sounds.
Go ahead and press play on the full 15 track album right here before carrying on to read Rivera explaining her take on it.
Rivera says she started work on the album about a year ago, in the summer of 2021, with GameChops founder DJ Cutman. "Going into Stardew & Chill, we wanted the tracklist to fully encapsulate the Stardew Valley experience," she says. That meant including the recognizable main theme and at least one song from every season.
"A lot of Stardew Valley’s music is in 3/4 waltz time (for example, 'Overture,' 'In the Deep Woods,' 'A Stillness in the Rain'), which can sometimes be a little tricky to translate to a groove that you can bob your head to," Rivera told me via email. "I really wanted to take on those songs, though, so I had the challenge of arranging them in a way that kept their feel but also meshed well with a straight 4/4 groove."
"A Stillness In The Rain," the haunting tune from a friendship event with marriage candidate Abigail, is Rivera's personal favorite on the album, she says. "The original arrangement is very simple, which meant there was a lot of room to explore creatively and expand on it in a brand-new way," she says, which included adding her own vocals.
"I think having vocals on the songs gives the songs a very personal, 'human' feel. I’ve found it’s those elements that are uniquely me—like my own voice or the instruments that I play—that really set apart Coffee Date as a project, and working on Stardew & Chill really gave me more confidence to come out of my shell as an instrumentalist and vocalist."
As Rivera explained on the album's Bandcamp page, Stardew & Chill features live recordings of every instrument in her repertoire: violin, ukulele, African kalimba, melodica, piano, and her vocals. The kalimba in particular reflects the breezy mood of Stardew.
If you've heard Stardew's original soundtrack backwards and forwards like I have, you can even replace it with the Stardew and Chill mod which swaps in the GameChops tracks. And if you're looking for other additions for your Stardew experience, check out our list of the best Stardew Valley mods. But if you just like the tunes for working and chilling to like I do, here's all the other places you can listen to or download Stardew & Chill.