By Ivan Stanojevic
Ivan’s 90s and Early 2000s Jams
As you will all probably find out very soon, I am essentially a living time capsule of the 90s/early 00s. You could say I’m nostalgic for that time, but I mean really, who DOESN’T miss those fashions? It was also basically the peak of pop culture as we knew it when we were younger. No matter what, the new crops of pop stars are usually missing something. That X-Factor, if you will. And pop culture is quite boring nowadays anyway.
My music taste varies greatly – from psytrance to pop, from funk to acoustic music, to French music from the 60s and Serbian music from the 90s, etc. However, I will always be a sucker for all genres of music from the late 90s and early 2000s. It was a time when alternative culture was popular and teens were the tastemakers. So, you had a lot of fun empowering pop songs as well as a lot of cheesy, but amazing indie-pop ballads, which you could usually find at the end of an episode of your favorite teen TV show. And lest we forget all the amazing punk and alternative rock bands from that era.
That’s why I prepared this fun, uplifting playlist featuring some serious jams to motivate you even in the darkest days! Below are some of the highlights, but check out the link for the full playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/4sIYBdbdtdy1p0YQpsUPuF
JANICE ROBINSON – Nothing I Would Change
I’ve known about this song for years. It’s an empowering song about life experience and how each moment of your life is important because it brought you here. Imagine my surprise when I was Googling Janice Robinson a few days ago and found out she was on X Factor UK last year. It seems she was eliminated early on, but it doesn’t matter, because her musical contributions will forever be iconique!
JOANNA PACITTI – Watch Me Shine
This girl’s most famous moment was when Britney Spears took one of her songs and rerecorded it for her Circus album. However, her true shining moment was when this perfectly 2000s song was featured on the Legally Blonde soundtrack. This song is basically what I imagine is playing in the background every time I achieve something I’ve worked hard for.
CAKE – The Distance
Read these lyrics and then tell me this doesn’t describe the feelings we are having before starting SCA? “Reluctantly crouched at the starting line, engines pumping and thumping in time, the green light flashes, the flags go up, churning and burning, they yearn for the cup. They deftly maneuver and muscle for rank, fuel burning fast on an empty tank, reckless and wild, they pour through the turns, their prowess is potent and secretly stern.” SO GOOD. Definitely one of my favorite songs from the 90s and I only discovered it last year. Its lyrics could be interpreted in a myriad of different ways, but I choose to believe the band’s guitarist wrote it specifically about a group of creatives at the start of their new career journey.
WHITNEY HOUSTON – Tell Me No
Everyone knows most of her older material, however, her later albums also had some real jams! One of those is this “I’ll prove you wrong” anthem that she unleashed onto the unsuspecting public in 2002. It’s another song that just gets your blood flowing and gives you the confidence to go into that meeting room and prove all your haters wrong with an amazing pitch!
JIMMY EAT WORLD – The Middle
Everyone who was a preteen or teen in the early 2000s knows this one. This is one music genre that seems to have kind of disappeared in the 2010s. But we will always have the older music to turn to in times of trouble. This one tells us, that we’re in the middle of the ride and everything will work out in the end. Something I’m sure we’ll be repeating to ourselves through the year.
HILARY DUFF – Why Not
This song was featured on the 2003 album Metamorphosis, which would go on to sell over 10 million copies worldwide! Pop stars nowadays could only wish! Here Duff asks us, WHY NOT take a crazy chance? WHY NOT do a crazy dance? I think all of us going into SCA can identify with this anthem from the legend that brought us Lizzie McGuire and the coming-of-age juggernaut that was Raise Your Voice.
SMASH MOUTH – All Star
Would any early 2000s list be complete without the era-defining band that is Smash Mouth? I think not. Not many songs can say they went on to become one of internets favorite memes. Whoever says they don’t get excited as soon as they hear the opening line “SOMEBODY” is a bold-faced liar!