we’ve been wanting to start doing S-N-T LISTS for a super long time, and there’s no better time to start than NOW.
my 1st list is 10 songs i LOVED this year, all at different times, all for different reasons. here goes:
#01. HALL & OATES: PRIVATE EYES
WHY: i am a SUPER out of the closet hall & oates fan. SUPER. so much in fact that i am currently watching their ‘live at the troubador’ concert on PBS. TOTALLY (haha). ‘private eyes’ is just awesome, especially the clapping bit at the chorus – it always makes me think of seeing them live with my brother (FOR FREE! thnx marty markowitz?!) in coney island this past summer, which is an AMAZING memory, and i always feel lucky to have it. it’s good to listen on the way to work when you feel miserable. ROCK N’ SOUL, MAN. and, yeah, it doesn’t even need to be said how amazing h&o are – i want to dance foreverrrr when i hear them! just awesome music to be happy to.
#02. gONNA gET gOT: THE GIRL AIN’T READY
WHY: HOW CAN YOU NOT LOVE THIS SONG? haha – even when i didn’t know much about GGG, i absolutely loved this song, even just for the title – ‘the girl ain’t ready’! that’s what people say whenever they have to meet up with me, because i’m NEVER ready. on time, anyway. -wink- the speedy tempo, the totally catchy chorus (especially!), and nearly breathless, nutsy rhymes that seem to keep poppin’ off faster and faster – the whole package is just awesome, i’ve listened to it over and over. it’s also good to listen to when you want to get yo a$$ MOVIN’! ie: when you’re running late. ahem.
#03. MGMT: ELECTRIC FEEL
WHY: i was totally not into the hype surrounding MGMT – i actually wrote them off as a hipster thing that i wouldn’t be into, but a friend of mine made me a mix and ‘electric feel’ was on it, and – holy shit. easily one of my favorite songs EVER – there was an instant, instant connection that i feel every time i hear it. just everything about it is amazing – the lyrics, the bouncy disco/electro groove, and how it KICKS in for the chorus (oh man).. i always feel like it connects me with who i truly am, at the heart of me. ‘plug it in and change the world/ you are my electric girl!’ heart. truly thankful that this song is in my life.
#04. DEMANDER: SONG 7
WHY: this song truly helped me out in one of the most trying times i’ve struggled through as of late. the two gals in demander are also two of the most amazing ladies i’ve ever met – positivity is absolutely LEAKING out of them and you CANNOT be upset when you’re around them, their energy is pure and contagious (and when i say ‘pure,’ i mean it). ‘song 7′ is a track off their as-yet-unreleased new album, ‘future brite,’ and as soon as i heard it, it just hit home, so, so hard. all at once i realized again why i love being a music writer, why i love listening to new music, why i love MUSIC in general and the unexpected connection you can have with a particular song – ‘i can’t always think about better days, it’s not that i don’t think that they’re not on their way, today’ – it just absolutely summed it all up at that moment. it’s not that i’m not hoping for better times, it’s not that i don’t believe in them – it’s just that you can’t always be connected to them all the time, and that’s exactly how i felt at that moment. amazing lyrics, amazing song. even the SOUND of it seemed to fit that time. i’ve shed some tears to it, too! but i needed it – super special song, indeed.
#05. BALKAN BEAT BOX: DIGITAL MONKEY (SOULICO REMIX)
WHY: thus began my flirtation with gypsy/balkan/electro/world music earlier this year! totally amazing. DJ 2melo was spinning at astoria music & arts‘ block party as part of make music new york, and he was playing the sickest, most insane electro world jams, complete with HORNS (ie: brass section!), which i am eternally in love with. it was pouring rain on and off that day, and everyone was just hanging out and dancing, some even barefoot in the streets, to 2melo’s tracks AND, of course, the AMAZING ‘balkan-soul-world-gypsy meltdown’ band panonian wave (recently renamed bad buka) that played live and closed out the festival. sick, sick band from QUEENS! (what what) – but that’s a story for another post. i just loved the ENERGY of that type of music, so my brother asked 2melo who he was playing while he was DJing, and it was balkan beat box. for a hottt minute there, i had a bunch of BBB songs on repeat while i worked, but ‘digital monkey’ stood out immediately as my first favorite. i still need to get more into BBB and this kind of music in general, but listen to the horns, especially on the soulico remix – they’re NUTS!
#06. FRANKIE VALLI & THE FOUR SEASONS: WHO LOVES YOU
WHY: oh my god, what can i say about FRANKIE VALLI? super crush and hearts forever – that’s a start. i’ve always loved 50s-type a-cappella/harmonies and old school love songs in general (‘stand by me,’ ‘earth angel’ to name a few!), so i’ve always had a special place in my heart for frankie’s tracks – i just didn’t realize how much until i took my mom to see ‘jersey boys’ on broadway for her birthday last year. AH-MAY-ZING. ‘december 1963 (oh, what a night)’?! WHAT?! ‘beggin”? ‘stay’? ‘sherry’? ‘walk like a man’? and what seems like a zillion others.. needless to say, i started looking for frankie/four seasons hits immediately after. ‘december 1963′ was my initial favorite, but ‘who loves you’ kind of crept up on me – whenever i listen to it, i remember that perfect moment being with my mom and having an amazing time watching ‘jersey boys,’ seeing her dancing in her seat and singing ‘who loves you’ to me, especially when the first verse kicked in (love it) ! it’s just such a great song that now makes me really sentimental – the lyrics are GREAT when you’re having a really rough day and need to remember who really DOES love you (!). and.. I SAW FRANKIE AT CONEY ISLAND THIS SUMMER, TOO!!!!! (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) which is also what i think of when i hear this song. it was seriously a truly priceless, indescribable, AMAZING concert experience that i still can’t believe i got to watch. totally cried. yeah, i did. frankie does that to you, people!
#07. SPINNERETTE: ALL BABES ARE WOLVES
WHY: ohhh, spinnerette. the lovely brody dalle absolutely became THE girl for me after i heard their first single, ‘ghetto love.’ now, everyone knows brody from the distillers and certain people were reallyyy harping on the comparison – longing for her punky snarls, lamenting the change – even, i think, accusing her of ripping off her rocker hubbz, josh homme from queens of the stone age. BUT – in my particular situation, i didn’t have any distillers baggage. i just heard brody’s solo project for what it was, a product of her experience that i happened to really love. ‘ghetto love’ was the instant connect, but ‘all babes are wolves’ – wow, even the title says so much. i’ve definitely listened to this more times than i can count as of late – i love the beat, i love the words, i LOVE the chorus, the gunshot-like sounds the track breaks in with. just a great, great song, and brody wails that chorus.
#08. MICHAEL JACKSON: P.Y.T. (PRETTY YOUNG THING)
WHY: what can i say about someone so irreplaceable? we lost so much with MJ’s passing, but his myspace (oddly) sums it all up – his music will live forever. very soon after he died my fam was traveling to ohio by car, and we stumbled on a special XM/satellite radio station dedicated solely to michael’s music for that weekend – and we listened to it for HOURS and HOURS straight on the way to ohio, everything from collabs with janet and jermaine to lesser known tracks that i wasn’t even aware of – talk about the biggest michael jackson education i’ve ever gotten, ever. i love ‘remember the time,’ ‘you rock my world,’ ‘another part of me,’ ‘dirty diana,’ countless others, BUT – ‘P.Y.T.’! just an amazing little song that always makes me happy. and MJ’s music should certainly keep making us happy – it’s the best way to remember someone who created so many unforgettable songs and unforgettable moments.
#09. FRESHKILLS: I QUIT SMOKING
WHY: this is just an unexpectedly beautiful, poignant song. the cap and i got into freshkills after seeing them open for the giraffes a bunch of times, and aside from their signature pummeling, high-speed tracks, at one point or another ‘i quit smoking’ truly stood out. it really is unexpected – the lyrics are so honest in a way that can’t help but make you think of a time you felt the same – holding on to some doomed tryst you still believe in, even if the other person has moved on.. ’i, i want to happy for you, and i – want to be less helpless all the time.. and i – don’t want to be someone you got over, and i – just want to be around.. when you come alive.’ yeah, freshkills can do emotional, even if it doesn’t initially seem like it (with the pummeling -n- whatnot) – and it’s just one of the songs that made me realize lead singer zachary lipez’s skill as a lyricist and storyteller.
#10. EVIL COWARDS: YOU REALLY LIKE ME
WHY: if the cap and i thought electric six hit the tongue-in-cheek-y mark, e6 lead singer dick valentine’s solo project (with fall on your sword’s william bates), evil cowards, takes it to a whole new level. ‘you really like me’ is a song that just progressively kept getting stuck in my head after seeing them live a bunch of times – i can’t help but associate it with the so-ridiculous-they’re-fucking-amazing dance routines that are the evil cowards’ gimmick (they got backup dancers, man!). ‘you really like me’ is just a sweet-a$$ track – awesome beat, the usual perfectly-suited weirdo lyrics, and chorus/verse/bridge/other-technical-musical-jargonz progressions that work so damn well. don’t question it, foo’! let’s just pretend this was all planned. ‘i just can’t eat yo cookies when there ain’t no butter in yo dough!’ 4serious.