I cannot fully grasp how Sirius XM satellite radio makes money (it’s possible they don’t and their whole house of cards could come crashing down any minute), but I don’t give a shit.
All I know is that I paid for an entire year of service for like a hundred bucks and I’d totally do it again even if all I got was the 90’s on 9 station. When was the last time you listened to PM Dawn or Jodeci? I Set Adrift on Memory Bliss just last week, thank you, and I followed it up with finding out a group of suave black men Cry For You.
However, that’s nothing compared the playlist Kristin and I got as we drove home from a night out awhile back. All four of these songs that scored our drive home held the title of My Favorite Song at some point, so let’s take a trip down memory lane, shall we?
Mighty Mighty Bosstones – “The Impression That I Get” (1997)
This is the song largely responsible for kicking the 3rd wave ska revival into the mainstream, and it’s not hard to understand why. This song is catchy as hell and still fun to listen to all these years later. As for me, I listened to Let’s Face It, the album featuring this song, so many times I still knew every word like I was reciting the Pledge of Allegiance when I cued up this disc on my iPod a couple weeks ago.
These guys were so influential on me when I was 16 that when they were the musical guest on Saturday Night Live, I taped the show on my VCR, then took pictures of Dicky Barrett onstage using a Polaroid camera, took the photos to Supercuts, and said, “Make my hair look like this.” He did not do a good job. It took me about four more rounds of haircuts before I got it figured out, and then wore a version of this spiky ridiculousness for the next decade or so.
Footnote to the Bosstones’ SNL performance: Do you remember who the host was? It was Chris Farley with a blown out voice two months before he was found dead in his hotel room of a drug overdose.
En Vogue – “Free Your Mind” (1992)
When I was 11, this was my favorite song running away. I didn’t really think about it at the time, but this is basically just a hard rock song sung by hot black women. It was a nice segue for me to go from listening to Color Me Badd and shit to when I discovered Aerosmith the next year. This song still shreds.
blink-182 – “What’s My Age Again?” (1999)
When I went to Spain senior year of high school I borrowed Enema of the State from my friend Chris and didn’t give it back. Not just for the trip, I’m pretty sure I didn’t give it back ever. I just took it, listened to it a zillion times while we were on busses to wherever the hell, and then just annexed it permanently. I was so infatuated with this album, and this song especially, I voted for it to be our class song at graduation. It wasn’t even one of the choices. I think I just crossed out all the actual nominations and wrote this in on the margin.
I felt so strongly that this should be our class song because I couldn’t reconcile my teachers (particularly the ones who taught my AP classes) forcefeeding us this narrative about how we stood at the precipice of adulthood and were about to undergo a journey and spread our wings and blah blah blah, with the overwhelming evidence that I’ve never been as juvenile and immature as I was senior year of high school. I participated in videotaping my friend Carson farting the Jeopardy! theme and my friend Brett dropping into a halfpipe in a wheelchair. I made more crank calls that year than at any point in my life. I loved fucking off that year, so when all I heard was how I was becoming this adult, I had no idea what age I was supposed to be. So I cranked this fucking jam and rocked out.
Boyz II Men – Motownphilly (1991)
The cool kids at my elementary school listened to Boyz II Men, so I did too. I was late getting into music. Having no older siblings will do that to you. So I had to rely on the cool kids in my class, and I wasn’t even good at that. I was usually backing the wrong band, but I survived school anyway, so whatever.
I dated a girl at the end of high school who was still REALLY into these guys. I remember thinking, “Really? It’s 2000. And we’re still doing this? Okay.” So I bought a bunch of their albums used, made a mix CD for her with a bunch of her favorite stuff, and then, BANG! So long, virginity! I have no problem with Boyz II Men to this day. “Motownphilly” has not aged particularly well though.