Maroon 5, Songs About Jane
People love to hate on Maroon 5 these days, but Songs About Jane is a good album, dammit. It’s a prime example of what all pop-rock album of the early 2000’s sound like. Most of the songs are medium-tempo musings on relationships with jazzy undertones, but they’re solid, solid music. I always play this album while writing or studying because I’ve listened to it so many times that it’s really just white noise to me by now. From what I remember about the lyrics, there’s a lot of sexual references that I really didn’t understand in middle school that turned out to be pretty vulgar. At the age of 13, I based most of my relationship expectations for later in life off of this album.
Pretty much everything to come from Maroon 5 post-Songs About Jane is crap, so I’ll reluctantly join the ‘I hate Maroon 5’ train. I’ve tried to like Adam Levine, I have (Hell, we both have worked at Johnny Rockets, we’re practically soulmates). But I really just find him supremely annoying, especially after that episode of MTV Cribs he was on once.
Shania Twain, Come on Over
While you were busy playing with Barbies, singing along to the Backstreet Boys or whoever, I was choreographing dances to “Man, I Feel Like A Woman” — which is, in my opinion, the #1 girl-power (woman-power?) song ever. The song is about a strong, independent woman getting ready for a night out on the town, embracing all of her womanly-ness, she’s ready to make all the boys drool. “That Don’t Impress Me Much” is another one where Shania plays hard to get — this lady demands the complete package of a man and will accept nothing less. So if you feel like embracing your inner goddess and don’t mind county music (Shania Twain is the original, Canadian version of Taylor Swift) give Shania a chance.
Avril Lavigne, Let Go
I know every word to every song on this album and I love all of it. Avril is my girl. It’s full of perfect pop-punk teen angst. What more could you want? I know you’ve sung along to “Sk8ter Boi” in the shower and to “Complicated” alone in your car so if you don’t like this album, get out. Just get out right now, you liar.
Jimmy Buffett, Boats Beaches Bars & Ballads
What’s that? You’ve never heard of Jimmy Buffett? Don’t worry. My friend Jimmy is most popular with the 40+ crowd. Blame this one on my dad because apparently Jimmy Buffett is a “thing” in the Coast Guard. You probably know the song “Margaritaville,” and that’s all you really need to know. There’s the occasional love ballad, but most of Jimmy’s songs sound the same. Boats, Beaches , Bars & Ballads is a 4-disc compilation of Buffett’s greatest hits, which includes a cover of “Brown Eyed Girl.” Promising! Buffet is good for Hawaiian-style cookouts once everyone has had a few drinks and feels like playing limbo.
Full disclosure: I have admittedly gone to one of Jimmy Buffett’s concerts with my parents. Watching a large crowd of slightly intoxicated 40-year-olds sway back and forth to “Fins” while imitating a shark is still one of the memories I hold closest to my heart. Jimmy Buffet fans call themselves “Parrotheads”, and their children “Parakeets”.
Lana Del Rey, Born to Die
Oh, Lana. Baby girl. I know it’s hard to be you right now: half of the Internet hates you and the other half is unhealthily obsessed. I don’t care how many people say you have fake lips, I got your back, girl. At least people are starting to forget that whole SNL thing (It wasn’t that bad). It doesn’t really help that you tweet things like “And I will show that nothing can happen more beautiful than death,” but that’s okay. You sound a little bit different than a lot of the pop stars around today, and I like that. I will still listen to “Diet Mountain Dew” while walking home from the subway late at night and “This Is What Makes Us Girls” when my suburban-girl blues set in. I know its all a little ridiculous but “Radio” makes me feel fabulous and “Video Games” is just catchy enough to get stuck in my head for a month straight. I just can’t deny you, Lana. I just can’t