[organized in no particular order (mostly)]
Chely Wright - It Was
I recently went to one of her shows (my third time) with Gabby, my roommate. She sang this song second and the second she began singing, it happened: I just burst into tears. I was NOT prepared for her to pull this one out. For a while, this song defined what I was feeling. It represents a lot of high school for me.
Chely Wright - Where Will You Be
I heard this song first at her album release concert, and it was my first time hearing her live. If you know me, you know how much I prefer f l a w e d live music. I’d loved her music for 6 years before this and finally, I could make it to a show. Also, Rosie O'Donnell's ex wife was at my table for this experience. Anyway, this song was safely cemented into my brain as one of my favorite songs of hers.
Avril Lavigne - Who Knows
I love Avril Lavigne. If you know me you know this. But this song was #9 on her second album, Under My Skin. I had the CD! I played the heck out of it. I honestly don’t know why I listened to this song so much. But it’s so tied to the part of my life before I really understood what being a fan really means. I remember watching Avril Perform this for the opening (closing?) Olympic Ceremony in 2006. Oh, do I wish I could have participated in American pop culture when Avril Lavigne was taken seriously.
Augustana - Boston
Lmao I think a lot of people have stories about this song. For me, it was when I was a senior in high school about to go to NY for college. “I think I need a sunrise, I’m so tired of the sunset.” - it was truly the height of my teenage angst. Sitting on the plane with my head against the wall staring out the window and all.
Sophie B. Hawkins - Miles Away
Wow. This song. I’m convinced that it doesn’t exist. If you google it, there’s one live performance of it.... and that’s it. That, and a few sites that have the lyrics. It’s somehow available on iTunes though. I now have a live recording of this song that I took myself. The whole Sophie B. Hawkins thing is a long story, but to cut it short, I went to her show as a joke and she ended up humbling me and ended up playing this song even if I didn’t deserve it. I was allowed a moment to go “Hey, listen. Be in the moment because you’re never getting it again, ever.” Well, you know, after I pulled my phone out to record it.
Cyndi Lauper - Time After Time
This is a classic. It’s so good. I played this over and over after watching a Torah Bright interview. Yes, Torah Bright, the pro snowboarder with 5 X-Games medals, and two Olympic Medals. I’ve seen Cyndi Lauper sing this live twice and times she has pulled my heart right out of my chest. So I guess I’ve played this over and over because it’s good?
Tracy Chapman - Fast Car
Another classic, so I don’t need to talk about how freaking good it is. But I listened to it a lot last year - I kind of lost it and found it again. Simple, but beautiful. There’s so much to learn from this song. So much to feel.
Brandi Carlile - Whatever You Do
The line in this song: “I love you, whatever you do, but I’ve got my life to live to” taught me a lot about how I think about my relationships with things, people, activities - all aspects of my life. Also after this year’s Grammys, other people know about Brandi Carlile now, so that’s cool. Throughout all of her albums, she writes a lot about forgiveness and this was a different take on it compared to her other music. I liked that.
Tori Amos - China
Okay, so I’m not really sure why I went to see Tori Amos live. Like, I didn’t know who she was besides the fact that I LOVE her cover of Please Come To Boston by Dave Loggins. Anyway these days I low key listen to her opening act more than her music but that doesn’t matter. Tori Amos said the first line of the song - “China--” (surprise) and I just went “All the way to New York” and then... that was the next line. Somehow, I knew this song. I don’t know where from, but knew the song. The experience of hearing it again was like discovering something in a past life that I was fuzzy about or didn’t know existed. I wonder if anything will ever make me feel that again.
Fergie - Big Girls Don’t Cry
I’ve had an inside joke about this song with myself for as long as I can remember. I don’t know how it started. Oops.