Monday, August 6, 2012

music monday: pop perfection

Maybe it's a result of growing up in the era of boy bands, or attending all those junior high dances (before I switched to a private Christian school where dancing was not school sanctioned and generally frowned upon), but to this day there is something about great pop music that instantly gets my attention and makes me happy. Now, the definition of great is probably an ambiguous one, but simple, catchy, fun pop songs tend to get in your head whether you initially welcome them or not! It all started for me when TRL was in it's glory days, prompting teens around the nation to rush home from school in time to watch the music video countdown. The names and faces of pop stars were as familiar as those of friends and classmates. Behold: *NSYNC (with bonus Britney)...

Just a few days ago, I found myself continuously and mindlessly singing the latest Selena Gomez song (I will say, I only knew it was by her because the video was playing in Costco, ha!) and then realized I had passed it on to my sister-in-law, who was also humming it. And as ubiquitous as "Call Me Maybe" has become, I have definitely spent a few solo car rides to the grocery store and back belting it out like a crazy person. Pro tip: wear sunglasses to avoid awkward eye contact with other drivers and/or their passengers when you are getting your Carly Rae Jepsen on.

I know there are plenty of singer/songwriters who probably loathe the sticky sweetness and sometimes nonsensical lyrics of mainstream pop, but I am generally not one of them. In fact, I am not even ashamed to say that after months of fighting it, I succumbed to downloading "Party in the USA" and have never looked back. (That is about as much Miley as I can handle though, let's not get crazy.) I still crank up the volume and relive my junior high years with some classic boy band repertoire now and again, and there will always be a place in my heart for the time that Justin Timerlake and Britney Spears wore matching head-to-toe denim.

I will say, we do our best around Lorelei to listen to songs with family friendly, and/or spiritually enriching messages, so my exposure to current pop hits can be somewhat limited. The day I hear my toddler running around the house singing Katy Perry lyrics might send me to an early grave. What are your favorite pop hits of past and present? Any personal "happy songs" of yours I might be missing out on?


  1. Great post and I'm tracking with you as always Jessa! I have also been "hooked" by "Call Me Maybe" but I don't want my 3 daughters to become obsessed about the idea of having a crush on a guy, giving out their phone number and asking them to "call me maybe." The lure of a secular pop song is definitely the musical hooks, easy to sing and learn lyrics (too simple and too repetitive), and sadly, over-production and "auto-tuned" vocals.

    As for some hooky "happy songs" that I can recommend with great and more meaningful messages, try "White Flag" by Dave Barnes, "Gold" by Britt Nicole, "Shooting Star" by Owl City, "Free" by Dara Maclean, "Let Go" by Holly Starr, "Letting Go" by Stephanie Smith, "Touch This Light" by House of Heroes, "You Lead" by Jamie Grace, "Summer Is Over" by Jon McLaughlin, "Beautiful Thing" by Heather Williams, and of course, there's that great song "Fireflies" by Jessa Anderson ;o).

    1. Thanks for the recommendations! I'll have to put together a pop playlist Lorelei and I can enjoy together :)

  2. I'm so with you Jessa and Kevin and hearing my daughters singing along to Katy Perry and that Carly Rae Jepson song!! Aargh. Funnily enough it seems that the Cookie Monster version of "Call Me Maybe" has stuck more than the original :) Relieved that our son and daughters are happy to belt out to Francesca Batistelli and Superchick, and now that I've found your music Jessa, you'll be added to their playlist !!! BTW thanks also for the recommendations Kevin :)