Sunday, June 17, 2012

Some Blog News

First of all, I'm glad I've got some new readers!  However you guys got here, thanks for checking out the blog and giving it a chance.  I hope you stick around.

Second of all, I have made a decision about the Pop Music Project.  I will be continuing to do it--quite intensely, in fact--but I will be moving the project to a separate site.  I will be putting up the archives of posts over to that site and I will continue to update it with new analyses of songs as I go back through the years.  This will allow me to go back to concentrating on feminist news, issues and events on this blog without distraction.  You can find the Feminist Pop Music Project blog here.

I will be putting up a new post here tomorrow, and all of the Pop Music Project posts will be on the other site along with new material from 2006 that I am working on at the moment.  Happy Interneting!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Pop Music Project: 2007

I realize now that 2008 was a turning point for pop music.  It was truly when vapid dance pop entered the Top 100.  I consider that a bad thing, and I am hoping that euro-style dance music is on its way out now in 2012.  On the other hand, I am now even more happy to be going backward instead of forward.  2007 had some good pop music and, more importantly, some very interesting pop music.  Let's get right down to it.  I want to start off with something I'm still trying to make up my mind about.

Good/Bad Song: Big Girls Don't Cry by Fergie

2007 marks the fifth year that I've listened to the Top 100, which means I have listened to 500 pop songs, a stunning percentage of which are breakup songs.  Some of them are bitter, some of them are self-loathing, some of them are desperate.  Very few have been "well this is over so I have to take care of myself" songs.  This is.  Which is especially refreshing coming from a female singer.

I hope you know, I hope you know, that this has nothing to do with you
It's personal, myself and I, we've got some straightening out to do.

I really like that she acknowledges that she might have problems herself that need fixing and that not everything is about her relationship or the person she was in a relationship with.  On the other hand, then we get to this.

And I'm gonna miss you like a child misses their blanket
but I've got to get a move on with my life.
It's time to be a big girl now,
and big girls don't cry.

Uhhh, why not?  Look, I know our society has a much larger problem with the impression that men can't be emotional, but I don't think this is the time to try to flip that stereotype.  Women DO cry.  Men do, too.  And both of those things are okay.  You know what people who tell themselves not to cry and bottle up their emotions end up doing?  Shooting people.  Don't shoot people, Fergie.  Cry if you need to.

Then there's also the really weird bridge that's a whole metaphor about kids being friends in the schoolyard and the line "we'll be playmates and lovers and share our secret worlds."  The phrase "playmates and lovers" should NEVER exist ANYWHERE.  Just pointing this out.  Onward!

Bad Song: Before He Cheats by Carrie Underwood
I like being back in 2007 because it's finally back to a time when I was actually listening to pop radio.  And yes, this song was on my iPod when I was sixteen.  You want so badly to agree with this, because who doesn't love an angry revenge song?  There was a good example of the revenge song in 2007--actually the number one song of the year--and that was "Irreplaceable" by Beyonce.  This...well, Before He Cheats is actually about just being fucking crazy.

We start off with a little slut-shaming...

Right now he's probably slow-dancing with some bleach-blonde tramp
and she's probably getting thirsty,
right now he's probably buying her some fruity little drink
'cause she can't shoot whiskey

...and then we go to Crazytown.

I dug my key into the side of his pretty little souped-up 4-wheel drive,
carved my name into his leather seats,
took a Louisville Slugger to both headlights,
slashed a hole in all four tires,
maybe next time he'll think before he cheats.

Yeah, look, that's not sweet revenge.  That's jail time.  Seriously.  I am a big fan of Donald Glover and he has a bit about how every guy has a crazy girlfriend story, but women don't have crazy boyfriend stories because if they get a crazy boyfriend they're gonna die.  I want you to pretend that it is a man instead of a woman singing those lyrics.  Still cute and fun?  Nope, then it's scary.  It is STILL scary when it's a woman.  It's okay, ladies, for you to be all "I hope when he's fucking his next girlfriend he's thinking of me!" or even to kick him out of the house if he cheats on you.  It's not okay to destroy his personal property in a really threatening way.  I'm going to conclude this PSA now.

Good Song: U + Ur Hand by Pink

I am writing this post as I listen to a bunch of frat boy jerkoffs party in the alleyway next to my apartment.  I am seriously considering putting my laptop in my window facing outward and blasting this song at them.  Hell, I wish I could walk down the street blasting this song all. the. time.  This song is so great it makes up for all of the "hitting on girls in clubs" songs that infiltrated the charts in 2007.  Check this out.

I'm not here for your entertainment, you don't really wanna mess with me tonight,
just stop and take a second, I was fine before you walked into my life
'cause you know it's over before it began
keep your drink just give me the money
it's just you and your hand tonight.

She's going into a club to have fun without being hit on, groped or ogled.  Newsflash, guys: We don't dress up and go out just so guys will stare at us.  We want to have fun sometimes without your assistance.  We don't need a supporting cast.  I especially like this line.

You know who you are, high-fiving, talking shit, but you're going home alone, aren't you?

Damn straight they are.  There need to be more songs like this, seriously.  

Bad Song: Girlfriend by Avril Lavigne
I don't think I can properly articulate just how much I loathe this song's very existence.  Everything about it is terrible.  It is terrible musically, lyrically, and ideologically.  I'm going to make this quick because if I think about it for too long it will get stuck in my head and it'll take me three hours' worth of Tom Petty songs to get it out.

Avril doesn't like your girlfriend.  She thinks your girlfriend is "so whatever" and that, with her magical powers of description as one of her key assets, she could make a much better girlfriend.  "Because she's "damn precious" and "the motherfucking princess."  Now doesn't this girl sound charming?

She's talking to a guy here and she's literally telling him to leave his girlfriend for her because he's "so delicious" and she knows he likes her because he looks at her sometimes.  And, because she's fifteen years old she tells this guy that his girlfriend is "so stupid."  And then she threw spitballs at her, I can only assume.

Look, why does it have to be a contest?  Why did you have to tear down his girlfriend for a whole song instead of saying "that guy that I like has a girlfriend and I don't like her so clearly I should back off"?  This is high school level crap and it leads to the same crap happening between mature, intelligent adult women.  And that is bad.  And truly, truly annoying.

Good Song: Like A Boy by Ciara
I went on for quite awhile about the failings of If I Were A Boy by Beyonce back in 2009.  I pointed out that she scratched the surface of something but didn't bother to follow through.  This song follows through on the premise that Beyonce's song set forward.  The fact that this song by Ciara came out two years earlier only makes the failings of Beyonce's song that much more inexcusable.  

The problem with Beyonce's "If I Were A Boy" mostly came down to the fact that it treated gender differences as if they were a difference in the way men and women loved.  The verses were about actual differences in privilege but the chorus was all gender essentialism: "Men don't understand how to love women", etc.  This one is all about switching roles, about treating people a certain way and ating a certain way vs. actually being a certain way. 

The difference is especially stark because the two songs are basically about the same thing: men treating women badly in relationships.  But this song is more about expectations than accepting the way it is because that's how it always is.

Wish we could switch up the roles
And I could be that...
Tell you I love you
But when you call I never get back
Would you ask them questions like me?...
Like where you be at?
Cause I'm out 4 in the morning
On the corner rolling
Doing my own thing

I wish there would be more songs like this.  Not necessarily because I think they're right, but because at least they open up the conversation and lend some kind of variety to the narrative.  This isn't whiny at all, it's frank and honest and not wrong.  It's a different perspective, and there's nothing wrong with that.

Bad Song: Smack That by Akon and Eminem

I don't usually do in-depth analyses of club songs on this blog because it's pretty pointless to do it.  I just can't find a club song that's not both somewhat offensive and really, really boring.  But this is a special case.

I think my favorite anecdote about this song is the time my mother--who is a teacher--told me that she was in the principal's office at her school and a parent who was in the office's phone rang.  This song was her ringtone.  Keep that in mind now.

This is a song about spanking a girl.  Straight up. 

Maybe bend you over, look back and watch me
smack that out on the floor,
smack that, give me some more,
smack that 'til you get sore

If you're a lady who's into spanking, more power to you, I don't object.  But keep in mind he has not EVER SPOKEN TO THIS GIRL EVER.  He wants to speak to her expressly so that he can take her home and spank her.  And not just a couple times.  Until she's sore.  Ugh.  And, for some reason, Eminem's verse is about taking a stripper back to his place.  What is it with the strip club thing?  Someday I will find out, I swear.

Good Song: Runaway Love by Ludacris and Mary J. Blige

I'm just gonna put this up front, Ludacris is kind of a gross rapper.  Maybe this song seems so great in contrast to all of his other songs, but I think it's genuinely pretty cool even on its own.  Is it a little Dateline-sounding?  Sure.  But I believe that these could be real stories.  And they're all about girls.

This song has three verses, each of which is devoted to the story about one little girl.  The first has a mother who's a drug addict and a prostitute whose clients abuse her nine-year-old daughter.  The second is a girl whose father is abusive and whose only friend dies is a drive-by shooting.  The third is a girl who has a tough home life so she takes drugs and ends up pregnant by an older boy who doesn't want anything to do with her.  They sound melodramatic, but I guarantee these are not impossible or even unlikely situations.  The fact that this song was made by a major rap star and was a hit is really really awesome.  And yes, I do cry every. single. time I hear this song.  Seriously, every time. 

Bad Song: Rockstar by Nickelback

I swear this wasn't one of my selections just because I hate Nickelback, though it definitely helps.  This song is the rock equivalent of every rap song about being rich and famous.  And this song just exacerbate the biggest problem I have with those songs.  In brag songs, women are just objects like cars and expensive bottles of booze and jewelry.  They are accessories that men use to accentuate and show their wealth.  Here, it's worse.

And we'll hang out in the coolest bars
In the VIP with the movie stars
Every good gold digger's
Gonna wind up there
Every Playboy bunny
With her bleach blond hair

Sure, this song is also about buying a bunch of stuff, but it seems to also be about buying women if the kind they expect to pick up are gold diggers and Playboy bunnies.  In the second verse he even emphasizes that he's going to "date a centerfold who loves to blow my money for me."  Uhhh, why?  Do you really just want a girl who wants you because you're rich?  Why is that a perk?

Women are not perks to being famous, music stars.  We're people, we have likes and dislikes "and not just those printed next to that centerfold's picture).  Give us a break.  It gets old fast.

Good Song: Beautiful Liar by Beyonce and Shakira

This is an incredibly honest song, I think.  It's about two women who find out that one guy has been dating both of them at the same time and telling them both the same exact thing.  So they do their best to reconcile what they believe their relationships were with the reality.  And they realize that they are angry at each other though they shouldn't be, and that they both feel ashamed.  But at the same time, they come to the conclusion that it isn't worth it to be ashamed or angry.

Let's not kill the karma
Let's not start a fight
 It's not worth the drama
For a beautiful liar
Can't we laugh about it (Ha Ha Ha)
 It's not worth our time
 We can live without 'em
Just a beautiful liar

I'm not always all "The men aren't worth it, sisterhood forever!" but in the case of some guy committing to two girls at the same time it's time to say screw him and not get pissed at the other girl he was with.  Thanks for not advocating girl-on-girl crime, Beyonce and Shakira!

Good Song: Face Down by Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

Yes, I had more good songs this year than bad songs.  Isn't that exciting?  Anyway, this song is fantastic.  I talked about Eminem and Rihanna's domestic abuse song in 2010.  That it it was somewhat good and bad.  This one is just straight-up good.

In this song, a man is talking about a girl who he likes and cares about who is being abused by her boyfriend.  There's not much else to say.

Do you feel like a man when you push her around?
Do you feel better now as she falls to the ground?
Well I'll tell you my friend, one day this world's going to end,
as your lies crumble down a new life she has found.

He is tearing this guy APART telling him that someday his girlfriend is going to realize what an asshole he is, and she's going to leave him and be happy without him.  I love that.  I think it's really awesome.  A little paternalistic?  Maybe.  But this song would work if a man OR a woman were singing it.  I think that this is a perfect sentiment for a song like this.

I'm gonna wrap this up here.  2007 was actually a pretty good year.  I'm glad to see that things are getting better as I go further back.  I hear that someone may have brought sexy back in 2006, so I guess we'll find out.

Some General Thoughts on the Billboard Top 100 Songs of 2007
  • There were 29 songs by female artists or male/female collaborations this year.  However, seven of the top ten were by female artists.  This is bizarre.  That is a shockingly low number in the Top 100 and a shockingly high number in the Top 10.
  • After doing 2007 it is clear that 2008 was a highly transitional year for pop music.  There were a lot of songs in the 2007 top 100 that could be classified as "rock" but in 2008 most of the rock songs were replaced with dance pop and it has remained that way ever since
  • Gwen Stefani's solo stuff is terrible, which is a shame especially since one of No Doubt's songs was the entire impetus for this project.
  • This was the year "Make It Rain" became a thing.  Gross.  Ten points from 2007. 
  • I will give one hundred dollars to the first person who can explain to me what "Welcome To The Black Parade" by My Chemical Romance is about. 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

The Pop Music Project: 2008

I like looking for themes throughout all of the hit songs in one year, and 2008 hardly made this difficult.  2008 was apparently the year of the stripper.  There were so, so many songs about guys watching girls sliding down poles and "making it rain" on them that I am beginning to wonder what the cultural catalyst for this was.  It's not a particularly happy trend, either, and I'm going to cover that in this piece.  In fact, in many ways 2008 was the epitome of seeing women--and women seeing themselves--as sexual objects and not people.  On that note, I would like to get right to one of the most controversial hits of 2008.  Unfortunately, this one terrible song launched a whole terrible career.  Fortunately, this is the last time I will ever ever have to cover her on this blog.  But sure as hell she's going out with a bang.

Bad Song: I Kissed A Girl by Katy Perry

In this lovely little gem, Katy Perry talks about getting really drunk and kissing another girl.  I, in theory, have absolutely no problem with this notion.  If we simply looked at this on the surface and heard the lines "I kissed a girl and I liked it!" it would be fine.  Experimentation is good, figuring out what you like is good.'s when you look deeper...

This song is about the male gaze, plain and simple.  There are plenty of women out there who think that they are taking their sexuality into their own hands by making out with other women in front of their boyfriends or guys that they want to hook up with to turn them on.  And that's the problem--it's to turn on the GUYS, not the girls actually participating in the single-sex tonsil hockey.  Katy Perry projects this perfectly-manicured image of the good girl gone bad: the sweet, innocent angel who went to a party, got too drunk and ended up locking lips with a random hot girl.

It's not what good girls do, not how they should behave
my head gets so confused, hard to obey.

She's a good girl gone bad!  And she's gone bad by kissing another girl!  How taboo!  And sexy!

No I don't even know your name, it doesn't matter,
you're my experimental game, just human nature.  

She was just taking a TOUR of Gay Land, guys!  She was just visiting, so what difference does it make if she makes out with one of the locals without even knowing their NAME?

I kissed a girl just to try it,
I hope my boyfriend don't mind it.

Now this is the thing that truly drives me crazy about this song.  These "experimental" girls, the ones who make out with girls just randomly without necessarily any attraction because they think it's edgy or that guys will find it hot, they look at these women they're making out with as objects.  They don't look at it as cheating on their significant other because it doesn't count.  Why not?!  If you made out with a guy it would be cheating.  They're still people that you had physical, sexual contact with in a way that goes outside the supposedly monogamous bounds of your relationship.  It makes no sense that your boyfriend WOULDN'T mind it!  Unless you guys were having a threesome, you kind of fucked up.  

Am I all for pop songs about homosexuality becoming a thing?  Sure I am!  But this is not one of them. This is actually kind of mocking the idea of being bisexual in a creepy way.  

Good Song: Love Song by Sara Bareilles
Yes, I just love Sara Bareilles, she's amazing and this was her biggest hit.  It came in at number 7 on the Hot 100 of 2008, and that's pretty damn good for a song like this.  Sure, it's poppy, but it's piano-heavy and the lyrics are, well, maybe a little more strong-willed than I've gotten used to seeing on these charts.

I'm not gonna write you a love song 'cause you asked for it, 
cause you need one, you see
I'm not gonna write you a love song 'cause you tell me it's 
make or break in this
if you're on your way, I'm not gonna write you to stay
if all you have is leaving I'mma need a better reason to write you
a love song today.

Here she is talking about being in a relationship with a man who cannot see her for who she is, who guilts her and manipulates her into trying to want to be with him despite him metaphorically suffocating her.  My favorite line in the whole song is in the bridge and it summarizes the whole point perfectly:

I believe there's a way you can love me because I say
I won't write you a love song 'cause you asked for it.

She believes he can love her for being strong-willed, for having opinions, for recognizing problems and standing up for herself, for not being obedient.  That might seem like a no-brainer kind of deal but you'd be surprised the messages a lot of pop songs send out about simply trying to please and cater to a significant other (Destiny's Child I'm looking at you).  But it IS possible to love someone for saying no, for not doing what you want all the time.  And if a guy treats you badly, why should you write him a love song?  If he's basically saying "do this--even if your heart isn't in it--or I'll leave you" why should you try to keep him from walking out?  Unless it's something like not shooting his dog.  Then that's reasonable.

I'll admit I'm a bit biased on this one, as I've mentioned before I love Sara Bareilles and she is probably the pop artist from the past few years whose full body of work I'm most familiar with.  So I can put this song in context.  But seriously, Little Voice as a full album was fantastic both musically and lyrically.  I highly recommend it.

Bad Song: Sweetest Girl (Dollar Bill) by Wyclef Jean, Akon, Lil Wayne and Niia
Of course, a year can't go buy without me including at least one song that Lil Wayne was in some way involved with. This song brings up a whole new issue: prostitution. I said before that this song was the year of songs about strippers, and strippers are included here too except instead of glorifying stripping the way a lot of the hits in 2008 did this one denigrates them.  This song's hook is about money, and how everyone has to get it, and blah blah blah the same way so many rap songs are, but the verses here are different.  Somehow, the guys rapping this song seem to hate prostitutes but love pimps, which is just so incredibly insulting to me.

See pimpin' got harder 'cause hos got smarter

Seriously? I feel so bad for pimps.  SO BAD.  Especially since this line comes at the beginning of the second verse when the first verse was all about a woman who got treated badly by her pimp.  I'd like to say right here that I think prostitution should be legal. There are a lot of reasons for that, though chief among them is the fact that legal prostitution would mean safer prostitution.  If it were legal we wouldn't need to worry about pimps, or at least not pimps that beat, rape, and steal from prostitutes.  This song is basically about the madonna/whore dichotomy: "this girl used to be so sweet and smart back in high school but now she's a prostitute! So gross!"  And that's not cool.  I get that it's saying that money corrupts people and makes them do unhealthy things, and that's a valid point.  Opponents of legalized prostitution aren't wrong in that prostitution is not the chosen career or dream of most women and that it is inherently objectifying in some respects. But a lot of the economic pressure to become a prostitute would be alleviated if it became legal, did not have to be underground and would be open to the free market.

And you know what?  If a woman genuinely wants to be a stripper or a prostitute, more power to her!  If she enjoys that, why do we have to be giant assholes about it? Why do rappers talk about how much they want to fuck strippers but then turn around and call them immoral?  It's a fucking ridiculous double standard and this song is a perfect embodiment of it.

Good Song: Touch My Body by Mariah Carey
I'm not a huge fan of Mariah Carey.  Yeah, she has a great voice but she's typically a little too Lisa Frank for me--sunshine and butterflies and "boy I'm gonna love you forever once you come along".  But this song is kind of awesome.  Again, it's a woman taking control of her sexuality--she wants this guy and she wants him NOW, and this is exactly how she wants him.  But that's not the part of this song that makes me grin from ear to hear.  This is:

If there's a camera up in here then it's gonna leave with me when I do, I do,
If there's a camera up in here then I best not catch this flick on YouTube, YouTube
'cause if you run your mouth and brag about this secret rendezvous, I will hunt you down

It's just the sickeningly sweet but totally murderous way she sings "I will hunt you down."  In an era where naked peephole videos of attractive female sportscasters and celebrity sex tapes are released without the knowledge of the women involved, this is a pretty spot-on set of lines from a famous woman.  There were a couple songs by women this year that had the "keep this shit secret" line thrown in--Please Don't Stop The Music by Rihanna comes immediately to mind.  Oddly enough, we saw the opposite from male performers.  This year Usher had a HUGE hit with a song called "Love In This Club" that was literally about FUCKING IN A CLUB.  It's a really interesting divide, and a very apparent one.  More power to Mariah for being like "hell no, keep your mouth shut, not everyone needs to know my business."  Is it a little prudish?  Sure.  But when you type "Erin Andrews" into Google the very first autocomplete result is "peephole video", so I can hardly blame her.  

Bad Song: Crank That by Soulja Boy Tell 'Em
I'm going to teach you some things today that you may not have wanted to know.  Because this song contains some terminology that...well, isn't in the mainstream.  So let's take a trip to Urban Dictionary!

If you were curious as to what "Superman that ho"  means, I suggest you click on that link.  I may swear and I may talk about sex on this blog but I refuse to outright post that shit here.  I also looked up "Bathin' apes" and found out that it's just a type of shoe, so at least that's not something disgusting.

This song would not have made it onto this list if it weren't for the fact that literally 2/3rds of the lyrics are either "Superman that ho!" or "Supersoak that ho!"  At a certain point you just start hearing those lines get repeated in your nightmares and you wake up covered in cold sweat.  Or maybe that's just me. But seriously?  It's just so fucking gross.  

That's all I really have to say about that.  I would like to give a shout-out to my friend Bob, who points out that this song has an "awesomely minimalist beat".  That's true.  With other words over it, this beat is awesome, which I know because there was a song that came out THE SAME YEAR that sampled this beat and was actually pretty decent.  

Good Song: Just Fine by Mary J. Blige
This song is just straight-up positive.  It's got a peppy beat and everything about it just just "everything is great and I'm amazing and I don't care what you think because life is amazing!"  And I can get behind that.  Even when things suck, if you feel this way you'll be okay.  

I especially like the line "I like what I see when I'm lookin' at me when I'm walkin' past the mirror."  Good!  More people should!  More people should genuinely just relax into who they are and actually ignore the haters instead of just talking about it all the time.  This song is solely about one person: the one singing it.  It's not "My life is fine in comparison to yours!" or "look at how much better than you I am!"  It's just about her.  And I think that's really cool.

Bad Song: Mrs. Officer by Lil Wayne and Bobby Valentino
So this is a song about literally fucking the police.  My first question is about the title: "Mrs. Officer"?  Is the cop you're having sex with married?  Why not "Ms. Officer" or even "Miss officer"?  Anyway, I digress.

There are not a lot of female police officers, as it's still considered a pretty masculine job and that's a big issue.  So why we gotta objectify female police officers?  This song assumes that all female police officers just pull guys over so they can find men to sleep with.  Not to mention that being a police officer puts a woman in a pretty dominant position, and here Lil Wayne can't deal with that so he has to talk about cuffing this woman and dominating her sexually.  It's kind of a novelty song, but seriously, I just don't get why it couldn't have been a different profession.  

Not to mention this:

And I beat it like a cop
Rodney King baby, yeah, beat it like a cop

Rodney King jokes are not funny.  Police brutality is no fucking joke.  And beating women is really not funny.  Maybe it's especially because of Lil Wayne's smug delivery of these lines, but it's really really not okay at all.

Good Song: Piece Of Me by Britney Spears
I do not by any means think that Britney Spears is a good role model.  She's got problems, and she always has.  But a huge contributor to those problems is her treatment in the media--she came of age in the spotlight and that could screw up anyone.  I give her credit for confronting that in this song, pointing out how insane the media is towards her.  This song was inevitable--she was making a comeback when it came out after a few years of crazy and not addressing it would have been a strange move.  But she did it the best way possible by pointing out the double standards and sensationalism that had brought her to this point.  

I especially like that she points out that tabloids always labeling her as too fat or too thin is unfair.  I like that she puts a human face on celebrities that have to deal with the hassle of paparazzi.  I like that she takes how oversexualized the media and her PR people made her and turned it on its head.  But I especially like this.

Guess I can't see the harm in working and being a mama
and with a kid on my arm I'm still an exceptional earner

Working moms get a lot of shit, and I like that she just called out people who act like that's the case in this song.  Now, do I endorse most of the things Britney Spears has done?  No.  Do I think she could maybe have taken some more responsibility in this song?  Sure.  But there are a lot of parts of this song that can be extrapolated to fit the experiences of a lot of women, and that's a step in the right direction, especially for Ms. Spears.

I'm gonna wrap this up here.  This was a pretty mundane year as far as music and controversy went, and continuing on would just be redundant.  

Some General Thoughts on the Billboard Top 100 of 2008
  • There were 38 songs in the Top 100 that were either by female artists or male/female collaborations.  There were 4 songs in the Top 10 that were by female artists.  This is a new low so far in my adventures through the Top 100s of every year.
  • I graduated high school in 2008.  My graduation/prom song was Good Life by Kanye West and T-Pain, and it came in at number 79.
  • There were lots of love and break-up songs this year that involved injury metaphors. "Bleeding Love", "Suffocate", "No Air"...I think this is kind of a weird trend.  Fortunately it was contained within this year of pop music.
  • I realize now that there are so few rock songs on the Top 100 for good reason.  Rock music--or pop rock, at any rate--means something completely different now than it did in the '90s.  Bands like Nirvana, Blind Melon and Sublime would be considered indie by today's standards.  They have been replaced by dull rock bands like Nickelback, 3 Doors Down and Linkin Park.  I can't wait to get back into the '90s and into some better rock music.  Perhaps I will be proven wrong.
  • God help me, I love Taylor Swift.  I just can't help it.  Go listen to "Our Song" and tell me you can resist that.  I will tell you that you have a heart of stone.

I've done some peeking ahead into 2007 and it's much more interesting, so I hope that's something to look forward to.