Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My Top Artists of the Week (Nov 24 - Nov 30)

(via my

I upped the anty on music-listening last week (given that I've been doing far more reading than listening lately) because Jesse and I went on a road trip. And for road trips you must have music. That's a universal truth, right? However, since Jesse was doing the driving, I mainly let him listen to his music, except for one day. Where I got to play some old favourites out of nostalgia.

I'm still on an All-American Rejects high. And in keeping with that post's theme, I'm going to share another music-related memory - NOT about the Rejects. But about road trips and music.

In August 2005, Erica, myself, and a few others traveled from Rhode Island to her childhood home in Maine for Lobster Fest. I had recently bought Missy Elliot's The Cookbook, and loved it. But, again, I was not driving on the way up! There were four girls in the car, and all the windows were down. We sported our sunglasses and enjoyed the scenic ride up the northeast coast. At one point, in the middle of some slow-going traffic, Kelly Clarkson's "Since U Been Gone" came on the radio and we immediately turned it up and started singing our lungs out. During our in-car karaoke, we passed by a bridge with three or four shirtless (& healthy-looking) young men who were suddenly jumping on the railing and then into the river below, where other swimmers were bathing on that hot summer day. We all hooted, hollered, and kept screaming Kelly Clarkson, while onlookers smiled and laughed at us. Then traffic picked up and the song ended and we were all left smiling.

Whenever I hear that song, I think of that four-minute moment. I know a lot of people associate "Since U Been Gone" with break-up vengeance and stuff, and that's cool. Do it! It's a wonderfully cathartic song if you just dumped a dirtbag. However, that wasn't the case for any of us girls at that time; we just dug the fact that sometimes even a radio-friendly pop song can bring out the silly in us. And for all the deep, meaningful and serious songs I have appreciation for, I still respect the power of any song, no matter pop or indie or emo, to elicit a response or assist in creating a treasured memory. Now I'm bordering on cliche, so I'll stop.

The whole caravan that weekend. (I'm in the middle in blue!)

Okay, I absolutely LOVE hearing stories like this from other people - stories of ONE song that you associate with one moment or a person or something. In my last post, I was intrigued by all the albums associated with periods of, what about that one song? What memory does it drudge up (for better or for worse)? Even if you never comment, leave one! Anonymously if need be! I'd love to know.


  1. Weird Jessica... did you read my blog before you wrote this? Hahaha... we must have a psychic blogging connection...

  2. But to answer... here's a funny one... "Notorious Thugs" by Bone Thugs N Harmony and Biggie... This was my group of friends (justin and andrew included) go to rap song for car drives to parties in high school. Then one day, Justin got a little too into and crashed the car. Oh man, we were ridiculous little punks.

  3. My favourite song in the whole world is "Stay" by Lisa Loeb. Anyway, in 2006 when I was in my last year of high school, our drama class had went to see some play in Glasgow at night as part of our coursework. On the coach back home very late at night, the radio was playing and that song came on. Everyone suddenly, as if as one, just stopped talking and started singing along as if we'd planned it. We hadn't. It always sticks in my head now whenever I hear that song.

  4. "Since U Been Gone" reminds me of the semester I spent in Rome, specifically one night we were partying with some other American students and that song came on... all the guys in the room freaked out and started singing at the top of their lungs. HYSTERICAL.

  5. I LOVE "Since U Been Gone"!!! That song always pumps me up. My best memory of it was when my old best friend, Kara, and I drove to South Carolina to surprise our friends (Bowling for Soup). Their radio representative took me, Kara, Jaret, and Erik out to eat. On the way back, Jaret was playing around with her iPod and we were in shitty--but still moving--traffic. It was Jaret and the radio representative in the front seat and me, Kara, and Erik smooshed in the back seat. That song came on and we were all rocking out to it and singing our lungs out.

    It was seriously the perfect moment.

  6. so random but OK. Saves the Day little EP (and best Saves the Day of all time IMHO if they didn't have that terrible cover at the end. so first four songs on the album, ok.) "I'm sorry I'm leaving".

    17 years old, driving with my 3 best emo friends in my hometown. it was april and the first nice day of the spring so all the windows were down and we were going "salvation army shopping". Yup, that's right... for emo teeshirts. Yup, I was emo.

    Anyways, I have probably listened to that album 27385932 bajilliony times but it ALWAYS reminds me of that day, windows down, emo shopping, young and stupid, singing loud.

  7. since you've been gone and kelly clarkson is my soul sister during this song.

    i have quite a few moments just like you wrote about here.

    annnnnnnd i'm going to you tube right now to listen

  8. haha! sorry for the random comment.. that song makes me think of an internship 2 summers ago at a law firm. another clerk hilariously wrote new words for the song to go along with a car accident case we had where the client's anesthesiologist was named dr. gahn. it's lame but awesome if you sing along with the song:
    here's the thing, i was in the left lane
    checked my mirrors, tryin' to make a change
    yeah, yeah, a truck came along
    he didn't see me, he rear-ended me
    i woke up in barnes room 209
    yeah yeah, i was out long
    and all you'd ever hear me say
    is "I need something for the pain!"
    that's all you'd ever hear me say...
    but since I saw Gahn
    I'm feelin good for the first time
    Since the collis-i-on yeah yeah
    he gassed me
    I fell asleep, which I wanted
    Since I saw Gahn
    How can I put it, Gahn put me on
    Nitrous Oxide, now the pain's all gone
    Yeah yeah, since I saw Gahn
    One day I forgot my copay
    and said "How'm I gonna pay you?"
    He said, "I've got you covered today"
    Since I saw Gahn
    I'm pain free for the first time
    Since the collis-i-on...

    um, you probably have to hear it to truly enjoy it. :)

  9. Oh wow. I have WAY too many songs associated with my memories. But let's see. One that sticks out in my mind is the Ignition (Remix) by R. Kelly. A few friends and I tend to sing this one out loud whenever we get a chance, it never fails. We always associate it with crazy dancing and just being silly in general. We even did it at Karaoke a few times (too bad for those that had to listen). Hehe.

  10. i've recently started listening to hanson's album middle of nowhere again, just for funsies. and it takes me back to being 12 years old being totally obsessed and wishing all those songs were written about me.
    i love the nostalgic feeling i get listening to it.

    big love for your blog all the way from melbourne australia!

  11. i have a lot of memories associated with songs...but one that just sticks out is Tricky and Eminem (I know, I know) "Welcome to Detroit". I was at a bar (in Michigan obvs) and the Pistons game was on. It was I believe game 1 of the playoffs, and the Pistons won. As soon as the game was over the DJ blasted "Welcome to Detroit" and the whole bar went apeshit. People up on their seats dancing and just freaking out.

    ILU Rasheed Wallace!

  12. Less Than Jake - Great American Sharpshooter. I still remember the specific moment this song played at a high school party - nothing in particular stands out, but it was just one of those fun nights where you actually remember to look around and soak up the moment. This song will always be for me: high school and friends and no responsibility and fun!!

  13. Swing Life Away - Rise Against
    The Tension and The Terror - Straylight Run
    There Cannot Be A Close Second To You - Copeland

    Those were all songs that Jesse put on Mix CDs to me when we were just starting to date, they really resonate with me and make me remember that whole stopping and starting time that we were dating.

  14. Please tell me that's Erica in the Celtics jersey..

  15. those cemetery wedding pics you shared on your reader are totally going to screw up my whole i'm a feminist and i don't wanna get married angle!

  16. haha okay I love Since You Been Gone, I'm not going to lie.

    I have a funny story about it though. Two years ago my boyfriend was djing at this club. He was opening the night for James Iha from the Smashing Pumpkins. So we hung out for the night and then this dude goes up and "dj's" off his iPod. He was playing the most random stuff including Since You Been Gone (the place flipped out) and then went into Nirvana which he played the same song back to back.

    It was probably one of the best/most hilarious nights ever.

  17. Since U Been Gone makes an incredible mash up with American Analog Set...

    Anywho... one song huh... I mean I could go into every song on the album... but if I have to pick just one (and it sounds like I do... if I want to play by the rules) it absolutely, positively has to be "For Me This Is Heaven." It is my favorite song from my favorite album... which in and of itself poses a problem due to all of the memories associated with it. I can't give it up and thus I can never truly forget her...

    I remember the first time I heard it during senior year of high school... around the same time I first met the one who would forever alter the course of my life... it is this song that made me fall in love with Jimmy Eat World, this song that I'll ever associate with falling for her. So many JEW songs hold special meaning to me regarding her... but this was the first... and it was almost prophetic with it's lyrics... "the mindless comfort grows, when I'm alone with my great plans"... in the end that's all she ever amounted to...mindless comfort, alone, and great plans...

  18. emily - just read your post! crazy timing :) and woah at crashing the car, hahahaha!

    paula - such a great song! definitely reminds me of my youth.

    renee - hahaha @ kelly clarkson in rome. and DUDES singing it. fantastic.

    angela - nice! it really seems like a song you can enjoy at all times with a group of people.

    bethis - I LOVE THAT ALBUM! since i got a new ipod last year i totally forgot to put it on and now i miss it!! "and we're rocking out..."

    heder - awesome creativity! sounds like it was a blast to come up with, ha.

    jen - hahaha r. kelly is so great with that song; i have memories specifically of my friend amber who commented below you. fun fun song.

    anon australian - thanks! hanson, for some reason, has become increasingly legit as their popularity has waned, it's interesting!

    amber van - HAHAHAHA you crack me up all the way from Italy!

    brittany - songs that remind you of times like those are the best :)

    kyla bea - awesome! playlist/mixtapes are a great source of song memory love (or hate, depending on if you're still with the guy, ha!). and i remember first hearing the straylight run demo for "tension and the terror" (which i think is better than their album version) and being completely sucked in and feeling all whispy and romantic...yay!

    jonah - correcto!

    sarah - HAHAHA aren't they great? i loved them!

    jamie - that's awesome! there was a similar moment like that to this song when erica and i first moved to new york and we were out with all the hipsters dancing and it's all, ya know, joy division and heartbeats, and then the dj put on kelly clarkson and the room went crazy. that song has some real power!

    rick - i KNOW! you sent me that mashup! haha. & i totally get the power of the jimmy eat world need to get you some happy memories associated with songs. lest you continue to wallow infinitum! (i'll email you soon about seeing you over the holidays! yay!)