I was listening to a podcast of NPR’s All Songs Considered this past week and they had an incredible show called Tunes That Got You Through Our Teens. If you know me you know that I adore nostalgia, so inspired by this podcast here are five songs I remember from my teen years. They didn’t necessarily help me through my teens but they are songs that I have strong memories of.
Come As You Are – Nirvana
I sang this song with a back up band of friends in front of my entire school (kindergarten to grade 9) at an assembly when I was in grade 8. I pray that there is no video evidence of this event.
No Need to Argue Anymore – Cranberries
In grade 12 my boyfriend and I broke up every other month. During the off times I’d sit in my room and sing/sob along to this track. Afterward, I’m pretty sure I’d curl up in my bed and write awful poetry about how I felt then call him and seduce him back into my life.
The Promise Ring – A Picture Postcard
My aforementioned high school boyfriend and I slow danced once to this song. I remember we were in his parents’ tv room listening to the record of this single. Yes, record. He was emo. I was straightedge and about to get into the rave scene. I took the second bus home.*
* If you listen to this song and get past the awful voice of the singer and listen to the words you’ll get this reference.
Spice Girls – Wannabe
Another grade 12 reference – I guess music didn’t mean much to me before then. I had such an ironic love-on for the Spice Girls. I was an über- feminist that year; my favorite book that year was The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf. Yet I adored the campy feminism the Spice Girls encapsulated. Plus, it was a fun escape from listening to emo boys playing guitars. I even incorporated the Spice Girls into my social studies presentation about the issue “To what extent should censorship be used in times of crisis?” On an overhead projector I shared an image of the Girls with the made up quote “Stop unnecessary government censorship – Girl Power!” I got 98% on this presentation. Coincidence? I think not.
Ani DiFranco – 32 Flavors
As mentioned I was a third-wave feminist. This song became the power song for my 18 year old self. It helped me get out of my teen years and over my high school boyfriend as well as the rebound I had after him. Ah, youth!
* This has been a bonus/ late Story Time Tuesday as I forgot to do it last week. Oops- I’m too busy!*