the soundtrack of my life, part one.

guys, real talk: sometimes i miss homework assignments.

In college, i took a class called ‘Understanding Technology’. we once had to write about a technology that exists in movies but not in real life & explain how it works in the movie and if it could ever work in reality. (I wrote about eternal sunshine of the spotless mind and selective memory erasure. pretty badass.)

we also had to create a playlist of ‘the soundtrack of our lives’. i thought i’d revisit that assignment, in two parts: 1) birth through 8th grade. 2) high school and beyond.

part one

Track #1: Raffi – All I Really Need

This was my kindergarten graduation song. It looks like it’s a popular choice, based on my YouTube findings. My memories of kindergarten are pretty heavy on the Raffi. Baby Beluga, De Colores, Brush Your Teeth, The More We Get Together, Apples and Bananas, Tingalayo… the jams.

Tracks 2-4: For my Mom

Track #2: Paula Abdul – Straight Up

My mom had the ‘Forever Your Girl’ cassette tape and we’d listen to it in the car together. I have fond memories of watching old Paula music videos with MC Skat Cat.

Track #3: Paul Simon – You Can Call Me Al

The ‘Graceland’ album is phenomenal and we would put it on in the living room and dance and sing. I also have always loved Diamonds on the Soles of her Shoes. I just busted out my copy of ‘Graceland’ again recently to enjoy in my car.

Track #4: Gin Blossoms – Hey Jealousy

It was hard to pick the 3rd song for my mom because there are so many options: Cheap Trick – Surrender; Pat Benatar – Heartbreaker; Bree Sharp – David Duchovny. But the Gin Blossoms were a large part of the 90s in the minivan to school.

Tracks 5-7: For my Dad

Track #5: Aretha Franklin – Do Right Woman, Do Right Man

My dad introduced me to Aretha. This song especially is haunting and beautiful and makes me think of every other weekend at his house.

Track #6: Little Feat – Dixie Chicken

Those opening piano notes are absolutely like my dad’s theme song.

Track #7: Squeeze – Black Coffee in Bed

Always in my dad’s playlist mix. Just like my mom’s songs, this was another tough 3rd choice… Other options: Stevie Wonder – Superstition; Mustang Sally; anything by Elvis Costello.

Track #8: Beauty and the Beast – Belle (Little Town)

This song reminds me of Sarah. When she was little, to go to bed, she and Harley would play tapes on their Fisher Price cassette player. My bedroom was next to theirs so I would hear it at night. They rotated between a few favorites: Billy Joel‘s greatest hits; the Lion King soundtrack and Beauty and the Beast. “There goes the baker with his tray, like always, the same old bread and rolls to sell…”

Track #9: Walker Texas Ranger theme song

When she was little, Harley would watch Walker: Texas Ranger reruns almost every day. She would stand up and in her serious 2nd grade voice, sing along with the TV, “When you’re in Texas look behind you, ’cause that’s where the rangers are gonna be!” Chuck Norris.

Track #10: Montell Jordan – This Is How We Do It

Growing up, I listened to whatever my parents listened to or the oldies radio station. When I hit 5th and 6th grade, I started listening to 92.5 KISS FM and I distinctly remember dancing on my bed in my room, after a softball game in 1996. I still freaking love this song.

Track #11: The Fugees – Killing Me Softly

I went to summer day camp at a place called the Catholic Club. Most of the kids that went there were not Catholic but just lived in the general downtown area and needed a place to go during the day. I was introduced to card games, handclaps, jacks, whatever “Crack an egg on your head. Let the yolk run down” was… and the music of TLC, The Fugees and Bone Thugs and Harmony.

Track #12: Jill Sobule – Supermodel

My best friend in grade school would have sleepovers where we would watch “Clueless” and “Dangerous Minds” back to back and hearing this gem from the Clueless soundtrack always makes me think of her.

Track #13: No Doubt – Spiderwebs

‘Tragic Kingdom’ was the first CD I bought for the discman I won in a AAA art contest in the 6th grade. It was a poster about safety… I’m kind of a big deal. Tragic Kingdom holds up as a solid album so good call, 12 year old Melissa.

Track #14: Paula Cole – I Don’t Want to Wait

Dawson’s Creek, duh. Not going to pretend like the fact that Katie Holmes went to Notre Dame isn’t part of the reason I decided to go there for high school. No regrets on that decision though. 🙂

Track #15: Spice Girls – Spice Up Your Life

I was mildly obsessed with the Spice Girls in 7th and 8th grade. They were my first concert that I chose, not just going along with my parents. I will always love them. Still have a non-functioning Spice Girls Polaroid camera in the closet, if anyone’s in the market for one. 🙂


3 thoughts on “the soundtrack of my life, part one.

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