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The Ultimate Road Trippin’ Tunes

29 Mar
Over in Japan, Spring is in the air. The cherry blossoms are blooming, I don`t want to die when I sit on a cold toilet seat, and I just had my first road trip of the season. Is there anything better than getting into a car with a bunch of your friends, rolling down the windows and hitting the open road with the music blasting? Okay, I could probably think of a few things but all of them are dirty and involve Ryan Gosling and a chocolate fountain so let`s not get into it here because my mom reads this blog (Hi Mom!).
Oh and one last thing. My friend Molly and I have started a twitter account that is basically the greatest/most awful and inappropriate things we chat about on g-chat. The tweets are pulled from actual g-chat conversations we’ve been having for months while being bored at work. We thought it was rude to keep all of this hilarity to ourselves so in the spirit of Easter and giving – we bring you Assholes on G-chat Follow us, promote us to your friends and when we’re famous we’ll totally pretend we remember your name.

Anyway, the weekend road trip has inspired this week’s entry — ultimate road trippin’  songs! So without further hesitation – my list. Please feel free to add your favorite jams in the comment section. Looking forward to getting a few new ideas for my next trip!

Road Trip Tunes (In No Particular Order because I am not spending two hours making you lazy jerks the perfect playlist)

No Diggity – Blackstreet – I feel like this one hits particularly with those of us who remember wearing Calvin Klein t-shirts and mini-backpacks we bought at Claire’s  to middle school dances in the mid 90s. But for real. I dare you not start singing this when you hear the words `Shorty get down, good lord…` Impossible.

The Chain – Fleetwood Mac – Really any Fleetwood Mac song will suffice on a road trip because they are amazing but there is something primal and intense about this one. You can tell that some serious hate fucking was going down when Lindsey and Stevie wrote this. I particularly recommend the version off the live album The Dance. Just yell singing `Cha-aiiii-aiinnnnnnn — keep us together!` over and over again is so fucking great. Bonus – there are amazing opportunities for epic air bass and air guitar.

Ooh La La – The Faces – For those of you not up on your Rod Stewart before he went solo then basically this is the song that goes `I wish that I knew what I know now…when I was younger. I WISH.THAT. I knew what I know now. When I was stronger` and he sings Oooh La La  quite a few times too. Basically, it`s as close as Rod Stewart ever got to perfection outside of his beautiful 80s mullet.
You're welcome ladies. Enjoy that Kentucky waterfall.

You’re welcome ladies. Enjoy that Kentucky waterfall.

Always Be My Baby – Mariah Carey – Sing it with me ladies (and men who are comfortable with their love of Mimi) -” Doo doo doo doh, doo doo doo doo doo doo doh. We were as one babe, for a moment in timmmmmme. And it seemed everlasting that you would always be minnnnneeeeeeeee.” Let`s just all flashback to listening to Mariah on our portable discmans on the back of the school bus and smile. Thank you. Great sing-along for a girl road trip because erryone knows the words.

Ignition (Remix) – R. Kelly – Please. If you don`t instinctively go “Awww yeah” when you hear the beginning of this song then we probably aren’t friends and will never be friends. Also, let’s just all admit that at one point in time in college our AIM away message was “Sippin’ on Coke and Rum. I’m like so what I’m drunk. It’s the freaking weekend, baby I’m about to have me some fun.”

Laid – James – This is that song that you always heard in the dive bar you went to in college about getting laid. If you don`t think you know it, I guarantee you do. It starts with `This bed is on fire with passionate love, the neighbors complain about the noise from above…`. Basically what is great is that this song is super dirty and catchy and ends with everyone trying to go into their falsetto to sing `LaaaaaIDDDDDDDDDDDDD, LaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIID` and it is a beautiful moment. Go for those high notes y`all, the windows are down and your friends are hopefully not a pack of dogs.

Sympathy for the Devil or Gimme Shelter – The Rolling Stones – The Jim Beddall classics of my car ride. Because sometimes you are on a road trip with your dad from Pennsylvania to Florida and musically what you can both agree upon is how great both The Roots (yes, my dad loves the Roots) and The Stones are and then you put on Let it Bleed, start up Gimme Shelter and both start shout singing `War, Children. It`s just a shot away. It`s just a shot away!!!!!!!!!!!` very loudly on I-95. And if Gimme Shelter isn’t your thing then Sympathy for the Devil has a great rhythm section at the beginning and then you get to do all the “doo doos” if you don`t really know all the words. Road trip perfection.

Basically anything by Prince – Do I even need to explain how great singing Prince in the car is? I hope not but in case you aren’t convinced just add When Doves Cry, Kiss, Purple Rain, Raspberry Beret or Let’s Go Crazy to your mix and watch your whole car go crazy.

The best.

The best.

Say It Ain’t So – Weezer – I know this shows up on my ultimate karaoke jamz list too, but seriously guys, everyone seems to know the words to it and you don’t need a particularly good voice to sing along. Plus it’s so satisfying singing the chorus – `Say it ain’t soooooooooo-whooooooaaaaaa`.

Lovefool – The Cardigans – Dear I fear we’re facing a problem if you love this song no longer. Easily one of my favorite (and best) pop songs of the late 90s. If you don`t know all the words to the song like I do after listening to the Romeo and Juliet soundtrack a LOT in seventh grade then I guarantee you can at least join along for the chorus of `Love me, love me, saaaaay that you love me. Fool me, fool me, go on foooool me. Love me, love me, say that you love. Leave me, Leave me, just say that you need me. I can’t care about anything but you`. Candy pop perfection.

I Believe in a Thing Called Love – The Darkness – This song reminds me of living in Ireland my sophomore year of college (shout out to the Dublin crew). The Darkness were insanely big in Europe and the minute I heard this song I knew I was destined to shout sing it from my little Tercel on all future road trips. Not only do you get to sing in a faux British accent, you also get to shout sing in a high Freddie Mercury style falsetto and have the opportunity for really intense air guitar solos. Sing it now – TOUCHING YOOOOUUUUUU, TOUCHING MEEEEEE! Yeah, done and done.

Hey Ya – Outkast – Another not quite old school but almost old school crowd pleaser that everyone knows and can seat dance to. We all like shaking it like a Poloroid picture and the Ladies and Fellas shout-outs in the song because they are magical.

Say My Name – Destiny`s Child – Another repeat off the karaoke jamz list but that is only because it is so magical. If your car is full of ladies you can try for the harmonies and Beyonce is pretty much perfection whether she is flying solo or heading up DC. No playlist is complete without Queen B.
I totally forgot there used to be four of them!

I totally forgot there used to be four of them!

Gin and Juice – Snoop Dogg – Okay, so when I wanted to throw some old school rap on here, what I really wanted to put on was Juicy by Biggie because that is my personal preference. Biggie’s flow is obvi the best in the biz but the more popular and easily sung to rap was chosen and the D-O-double G wins the day. Plus, it’s a really great rap song and it`s about rolling down the streets smoking and drankin.
Blister in the Sun – Violent Femmes – Everything about this song. Everything. The fact that your voice doesn’t even need to be close to great to sing it, the fact that it’s what Angela Chase danced to after she realized she was finally over Jordan Catalano, the fact that it is so perfectly 90s and that people both 15 years older and 10 years younger than me can universally agree that it`s great to shout/sing is enough for me. LET ME GO ONNNNNNNNN…..LIKE A BLISTER IN THE SUN!
This youtube clip of Claire Danes dancing to this song pretty much goes to show that Claire Danes has always and will always rule.

And now for the songs that I recognize aren`t for everyone but are undeniably for me. If you don`t like it, then get outta my car jerkface.

Ex-Factor – Lauryn Hill – This song just makes me put on my sunglasses so you don`t see me cry, grip my chest like I am having a heart attack a few times and just really belt the pain. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was THE album of my mid teenager years and will never die. I whipped this out on road trip this weekend and I think I made one friend feel pretty uncomfortable with all my emoting and another friend was just as into it as I was. Know your audience, or be like me and not give a fuck.
THE album of my teens.

THE album of my teens.

Anything by Paul Simon – Graceland, Late in the Evening, Diamonds on the Soles of her Shoes, anything in the Simon and Garfunkel collection. Paul Simon is pretty much one of my favorite singer/songwriters of all time and I can guarantee that he will be on my road tripping playlist. I recognize he is not for everyone, but I also recognize that a lot of people have terrible taste. Paul for the win! My personal favorite Paul road trip song is Graceland because it`s just so beautiful and perfect.
The Rat – Walkmen – I like to get a few good angry sings in while I drive and this song by The Walkmen is full of fury and break-up rage but is also extremely catchy and not like MegaDeath angry. A perfect pop-rock ripper.
Anything by Rilo Kiley/Jenny Lewis/Fiona Apple — Sometimes I gotta get my girl angst out and feel my feelings for two seconds. Any song by Rilo Kiley, Jenny Lewis or Fiona Apple will usually suffice. I usually don`t do this with gents in the car — so broads in my car — it`s happening. We can sing our feelings. It will be great.
Time After Time – Cyndi Lauper – See above. Except I have no problem singing this with dudes in the car. Ya been warned.
Parks and Rec knows what's up.

Parks and Rec knows what’s up.

What’s on your road trippin’ playlist? Please share in the comments or on my twitter ( or facebook because I love hearing from you. Smooches. Get ready for our Game of Thrones recaps starting next week!

Early Nineties Nostalgia – Saved by the Bell

11 Mar

Bayside High ruined high school for me. If you grew up in the early to mid nineties then I feel fairly certain that we could sit down and have an intense conversation about the greatest Saturday morning show ever — Saved by the Bell. I’m not talking about the Miss Bliss Years or the College Years and especially not The New Class. I’m talking about the OG SBTB with Zack, Kelly, Slater, Jessie, Screech, Lisa and Mr. Belding.

Just pretend Tori isn't a part of this awesome montage.

Just pretend Tori isn’t a part of this awesome montage.

I don’t know that I can compare it to anything on tv now because it didn’t center around wizards or web series stars or famous singers pretending to be normal like certain Disney shows my niece and nephew are now growing up on. This show centered around a group of normal high school friends in the southern California town of Bayside trying to navigate high school while still pulling the most awesome pranks and generally being the coolest people ever. And while it was about high school, it was silly and not too grown up. It was something for those of us not quite old enough for 90210 but not quite young enough to still watch Tiny Toons.

But back to SBTB ruining high school. You see, eleven year old me really thought that this what was high school was going to be like. I thought the coolest boy in school was going to be as handsome and charming as Zack Morris and that it was absolutely possible that his best friend would be the dorkiest guy in school because they grew up together and you don’t just walk away from that.

The whole gang and power couple Zack and Kelly.

The whole gang and power couple Zack and Kelly.

You could imagine my disappointment when I slowly started to realize that life was going to be more complicated than what kind of shake to order at the Max and that the brainiest girl in school wasn’t going to be dating the class jock. Or that the coolest guy isn’t a jerk and is best friends with a huge dork.

There was a character everyone could relate to or at least have their first crush on. There was the cool, charming, excellently coifed and handsome Zack, the nerd with a heart of gold Screech, the beautiful and cool fashionista Lisa, the brainy and competitive Jessie Spano, the wholesome, kind, prom queen Kelly, the well meaning, sexy meat head jock Slater and the tough but loving Mr. Belding.

Look at that hair. Absolute 90s perfection.

Look at that hair. Absolute 90s perfection.

I was more of a Zack girl than a Slater girl but I fancied myself a Jessie Spano since Lisa was too cool of a dresser and Kelly bored me to death. I recall squealing with delight when Jessie and Zack “accidentally” made out during Snow White rehearsals (twice!). Let’s face it y’all – it was totally the hottest kiss ever on the show – just see the youtube clip below – sorry for the sort of crappy quality – it was all I could find.

There was totes tongue going on. And Jessie was a role model for young girls – showing us that it was cool to be smart and competitive and a feminist who yells at her boyfriend for calling her “mama”.

Hottie with a naughty body (and a sweet mullet)

Hottie with a naughty body (and a sweet mullet)

This show explored serious issues such as addiction (via the super famous “caffeine” pill addiction breakdown compliments of Jessie Spano), drugs (that episode where the movie star pulls out a joint a party), drunk driving, broken hearts, and failure.

But it also was fun and gave us an Oklahoma! themed prom, a rapping/hip hop school play in Snow White and the Seven Dorks, a dance-off hosted by Casey Kasem, and other amazing hi-jinks that I was sure I’d be getting up to once I was sixteen. The show never really talked much about sex, except for the occasional “ooooohs” that would happen when two characters chastely kissed.  It was good wholesome fun that didn’t seem like it was pandering to my very mature eleven year old self.

Buddy bands yo!

Buddy bands yo!

I know this sounds silly to say, but man – they just don’t make em’ like that anymore. While there were romances (notably between Zack and Kelly and Jessie and Slater) – it never felt like that was what the show was about. It was about friendship and having fun. The characters didn’t always all get along and they didn’t always do the right thing, but they learned from their mistakes. Plus, they had the fatherly figure of Mr. Belding who was guiding them, disciplining them, and provided the sort of eye rolling “Oh adults. So out of touch” moments for us.

The best.

The best.

So yep, My name is Erin and I am a Saved by the Bell addict.

Things I learned from watching Saved by the Bell

1) Caffeine pill addiction is no fucking joke. It will make you think you missed the geometry test you already took, be late for Hot Sundae’s gig at the Max and will result in spontaneous singing of “I’m So Excited”.

2) Zack Morris’s hair was perfection.

3) Even though he had a mullet perm – Mario Lopez was bound for future hotness

Get in line ladies.

Get in line ladies.

4) There’s No Hope (clap) with Dope!

5) Just because you say “Time Out” doesn’t mean that everyone is going to freeze like you’re Zack Morris. Trust me, I’ve tried.

Time out!

Time out!

6) There is nothing cooler than high-waisted jeans, Cosby sweaters and giant cell phones.

The fashion was truly the best.
The fashion was truly the best.

The fashion was truly the best.

7) Access to the Principal’s office is as easy as opening a door that looks like it should be a storage closet.

8) Bayside rules and the Valley Bulldogs suck.

9) Meat heads will always have nicknames like “Ox”.

Ox lugging Slater away.

Ox lugging Slater away.

10) It’s entirely possible for a tv show to introduce a character (Tori) and then make her disappear like she never happened in the next set of episodes.

11) When guys have a sleepover they wear coordinating neon socks, tank tops, and sunglasses and do choreographed dances to “Barbara Ann”



12) Oil spills are something that can happen on your high school football field.

13) Dating or crushing on older guys never ends well (cough – Jeff)

14) Don’t use your first name as part of your band’s name – you’ll jinx the band and then they’ll break up. I have a Zack Attack t-shirt to remind me of the better days.

Yes, I owned this shirt. Stop judging me.

Yes, I owned this shirt. Stop judging me.

15) If you want your opening credits to be amazing – use as many “cool” clip art pictures as possible (skateboards, sunglasses, ice cream, etc) – along with a catchy theme song.

16) You knew something dramatic was going down when the electric guitar background music got real sad and intense (the youtube clips prove this). Conversely – awesome things happening meant amazingly upbeat electric guitar music.

Favorite Episodes

-The famous caffeine pill episode because it also featured Screech dressing as a woman janitor to secretly record the girls singing in the locker room. Also it features a music video by Hot Sundae (Lisa, Kelly, and Jessi) which mostly looks like a workout video.

– The episode where the boys take the girls for granted and the girls get pissed – prompting a dinner at the Max and the boys performing “What I Should Have Said Theater”. Extra points for this because Screech plays Kelly in drag and Slater rips off his clothes to reveal a unitard and dances ballet.

– The Dance-Off episode where Lisa sprains her ankle before Casey Kasem comes to town and opts to perform with Screech and they invent “The Sprain” dance and win the contest.

– All of the episodes where the crew works at a beach resort for the summer. It introduces my favorite of Zack’s girlfriends – Stacy Carosi – an east coast college broad with a mouth of sass and a secret vulnerability.

Leah Remini was the

Leah Remini was the

– The Zack Attack episode – which I am pretty sure inspired VH1’s Behind the Music.

– The graduation episode because it made me cry when I was a kid.

– Snow White and the Seven Dorks episode – for the above stated reasons. That kiss. Woot. You just KNOW they had to have been doing it in real life.

A high school musical that was completely rapped? Yep, I'm in.

A high school musical that was completely rapped? Yep, I’m in.