’00s Pop Hits: A Journey through Memory

| April 21, 2017 | 0 Comments

Technically, smell is the sense most strongly linked to memory, but for me, nothing brings images to the front of my mind quicker than music. Listening to a video of the biggest hits from the ’00s and ’10s, I was brought on a violent journey through my own memories, from my earliest thoughts to three days ago. Here are some of the highlights.

“Complicated” – Avril Lavigne (2002)

This was on my favorite Kidz Bop CD (back when there was only a few of them!) and I belted this song in the shower whenever I could. I was punk before I even knew what punk was. Though I have to say “Sk8er Boi” is still my all-time favorite Avril song.

“Bring Me to Life” – Evanescence (2003)

Every former scene kid has uncomfortable memories of singing this song, wearing raccoon-looking eyeliner and teasing your hair. I didn’t appreciate the true value of this song before my full-on emo phase. Plus, it’s the best song to pick on the roller coaster in Universal Studios where you listen to music the whole time.

“You’re Beautiful” – James Blunt (2005)

I used to sing this song like I was mourning my own lost love, even if I never knew the real words. Who was I pining after? I was eight years old. I still believed in cooties.

“I Kissed a Girl” – Katy Perry (2008)

This song was funny: girls weren’t supposed to kiss girls! That’s not how it works! Ah, how wrong I was. A lot has changed since 2008.

“Love the Way You Lie” – Rihanna and Eminem (2010)

For some reason I knew the entire rap to this song and showed it off to all my friends at summer camp when we were on the bus to field trips and they let us play the radio. How did I not know that this song is about a horrible abusive relationship? Somehow nothing set off any red flags in my 13-year-old mind.

“Tik Tok” – Ke$ha (2010)

This is probably still one of my favorite songs. I’m sure my mom and my teachers weren’t thrilled to hear me singing at the top of my lungs about getting wasted and doing drugs at the club in seventh grade, but they never told me to stop, so I just kept singing it.

“Somebody that I Used to Know” – Gotye (2012)

When I flew to Florida for spring break in 2012, this music video came on the in flight entertainment channel about once every fifteen minutes. Somehow I didn’t get sick of it, and I learned to play it on a bunch of instruments and sing all the harmonies. Pentatonix’s a cappella cover is also worth a listen.

“Uptown Funk” – Bruno Mars (2014)

This was the undisputed anthem of my senior year of high school: it was constantly on the radio, and even my parents knew all the words. My high school a cappella group (which I wasn’t in) did a mediocre arrangement of this at the spring concert and everybody lost their minds.

“See You Again” – Wiz Khalifa (2015)

I saw Wiz perform this live (I was there for Fall Out Boy, let’s not have any misconceptions about me) through a thick haze of weed smoke at the Xfinity Center in Mansfield right after my high school graduation. It was a moving experience, probably because I kept inhaling all the smoke from everyone around us. I’ve never watched a Fast and Furious movie and I have no idea who this is supposed to be dedicated to.

“Cheap Thrills” – Sia (2016)

On my five-minute drive to and from work this past summer, I was almost 100% guaranteed to hear the weird Sean Paul remix of this song on KISS108 as I tried to drive with one hand and play Pokemon GO with the other. This might have been the soundtrack to my first car accident had I been a little less careful.

Go on your own embarrassing journey through your childhood with the same video – you’ll probably remember way more about middle school than you ever wanted to:


featured photo credit: Geraint Rowland Photography Listen to the Band via photopin (license)

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Category: featured, Music, Poetry, Prose and Comedy, Reflections

Charlie Scanlan

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Charlie is a journalism major in the College of Communication.

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