While I was driving to work last week I was listening to my November playlist and thinking about what songs I wanted to write about. It struck me that my first ever published writing gig, back when I was 17, was reviewing music.
I’d just started studying for my A-Levels (which I think if my googling is correct is the equivalent of being a senior in high school for my North American friends) when my school decided it wanted to start a newsletter and asked for students to volunteer. As I mentioned in last month’s playlist post I’ve always been into music, and for a while I wanted to work in the music industry doing media of some sort, so this seemed like a good opportunity.
I signed up and offered to write a weekly review of one or two new singles that had been released that week. This was pre-internet so I had to go out every week and buy a couple of them. If I’d been more savvy I should have tried to see if one of the two of music shops in my very small town would loan or comp me the tapes in exchange for some promotion. As you can probably tell I had no idea what I was doing.
Still, it was a fun experience and my first venture into writing something that actually got seen by other people. And now here I am *cough* years later writing about music for you lovely people.
So, on with this month’s playlist.
Like last month I’ll just pick out the songs that I particularly enjoyed or that stood out for me and talk a bit about why I liked them.
Standard disclaimer: If you recommended anything that I haven’t written about it’s not that I hated it. It’s rare that I actively hate anything that gets suggested to me. These are just the ones that I particularly enjoyed.
I Can’t Stand The Rain – SuperM
I have to say that considering how many friends I have who love K-Pop and J-Pop it’s not really a genre I’ve explored beyond the songs that end up on my playlists each month. I generally try to put the more upbeat songs towards the start of my playlists, working on the assumption that at least at the start of the month I’ll be listening to them on the way to work when I need something to get me going.
Even though I don’t understand the lyrics I found myself humming along to this one after just a couple of listens.
Ka-CHING! – EXO-CBX
If I Can’t Stand The Rain had me humming along, Ka-CHING! had me bouncing in my seat in lieu of dancing. It’s an absolute banger and definitely one of my favourites on this playlist. I challenge anyone to listen to it and not bop along.
Pure Water – Mustard & Migos
Hip-hop/Rap is not one of my go-to genres of music. The lyrics are often full of misogynistic language and it’s just not for me. But occasionally one ends up on my playlist that I can’t help but like.
This one came across my radar after it was played at a Colorado Avalanche hockey game and one of my favourite players, Andre Burakovsky, was clearly enjoying it.
I couldn’t tell you what, exactly, it is about the song that I like but it got stuck in my head pretty fast and I kept doing a little dance similar to the one above every time it came on.
Pictures of You – The Cure
Fun fact: The first time I visited the US was in 2003 to attend a Buffy the Vampire Slayer convention. While I was over there I met up with a bunch of friends I’d met on one of the forums I frequented and one of them presented me with a CD that she’d made using music that reminded her of the show. This song was on it (well, a live version of it), and I will always have nostalgic feelings towards it.
It’s a good song too, though. I am a general fan of The Cure so it was nice to give them a listen again. It’s been a while.
You Wouldn’t Know Love – Cher
I have a lot of respect for Cher as an artist. She’s been releasing songs and albums for 50 years and the music she produces now is just as good as everything else she’s done. This song is from the era when I first got introduced to her music. I remember hearing songs like If I Could Turn Back Time and Just Like Jesse James a lot when I was a kid and you can tell by the style that this song is from the same album. It took me right back to being that age and it’s absolutely one to sing along to.
Tomorrow Never Knows – The Beatles
This one nearly didn’t make it onto the list, because for ages I didn’t like it at all. There was something quite unsettling about the backwards guitars and other sounds used in the background. Then, in the last week or so, I found myself humming it while I was at work or doing other chores. I don’t know whether it’s just planted itself in my subconscious or if it’s actually grown on me but I think I like it now. Have a listen and let me know what you think.
Omigod You Guys – Annaleigh Ashford, Delta Nus, Dequina Moore, Laura Bell Bundy & Leslie Kritzer
Much like last month where I got hooked on a song from the Beetlejuice musical, I fell in love with this song pretty much as soon as I heard it and I kind of want to go and see the Legally Blonde musical now. It’s fun, catchy, and definitely one to sing along to.
Pigeon Camera – The Tragically Hip
This is exactly sort of music I used to listen to when I was a teen, although The Tragically Hip never made it onto my radar until recently. Listening to this gave me serious nostalgia for being holed up in my bedroom listening to albums on cassette in the early 90s.
One Man Band – Old Dominion
Country is another genre of music that doesn’t always grab me but there’s something delightfully charming about this song. It’s just nice and gentle and easy to sing along to and the lyrics are really sweet.
Can’t Keep It In – Cat Stevens
Listening to this I honestly wouldn’t have guessed it was recorded in the 70s. It’s got a classic, timeless feel to it and it’s another one of those songs that I couldn’t help but sing along to.
Trouble Every Day – She Drew The Gun
With the current political climate being the way it is I’m surprised there aren’t more songs about it being released. The lyrics to this song don’t pull any punches and it’s refreshing to hear someone singing about how so many of us are feeling. I wasn’t familiar with She Drew The Gun prior to this but it definitely makes me want to check out more of their stuff.
Sounds of Someday – Radio Company
Whereas The Tragically Hip reminded me of the music I listen to in the 90s, this song reminds me of the music I listened to in the early 2000s. I was very much into slow rock back then and this is a classic example of that. Fans of the TV show Supernatural may recognise the singer on this one. It’s none other than Jensen Ackles and he’s got a great voice.
I don’t typically make a playlist in December as I’m either listening to my favourite songs from all my playlists that year, or I’m listening to Christmas music.
Given that we only started this blog in October I may put my Best of 2019 playlist on Spotify and talk about some of my particular favourites next month so you can see everything I was listening to before I started blogging about it.