Papa can you hear me?
- INDIA.ARIE — “Video” — as described by taylor litchfield
- CHER — “If I Could Turn Back Time” — as described by kelsey dayton
- J. COLE — “Apparently” — as described by auden ehringer
- MADONNA — “The Power Of Good-Bye” — as described by ned hardy
- THE ROMANTICS — “What I Like About You” — as described by siena streiber
it started with a whisper
- DUKE ELLINGTON — “Jeep’s Blues” — as described by chloe rickards
for a dollar
- TOBIAS JESSO JR — “True Love” — as described by anthony milki
- SQUEEZE — “Tempted” — as described by eugenia puglisi
- THE BANGLES — “Eternal Flame” — as described by jackson wiley roach
- VAN MORRISON — “Moondance” — as described by benina stern
- LANA DEL REY — “Old Money” — as described by victor liu
- JONATHAN RICHMAN — “I Was Dancing in a Lesbian Bar” — as described by lawrence neil
hit at the reunion
- LEA MICHELE — “Mama Who Bore Me” — as described by editor bojan srb
INDIA.ARIE — “Video” — as described by taylor litchfield
When I was little and my mum used to drag me around like her favorite accessory, she would jam to queens of independence and strength to reinforce the value she couldn’t show me herself. She preached the words of Destiny’s Child, Angie Stone, and India Arie as the bible of womanhood. Each bar was soaked in lessons about self love and embracing the goddess inside you, complete with the flaws, cellulite, birthmarks, and scars. In times of struggle, I fall into these ladies to shed some wisdom and guidance ’cause part of being woman is finding strength in other women, jus as my mumma taught me.
CHER — “If I Could Turn Back Time” — as described by kelsey dayton
Nothing defines “childhood” more than the memory of my mom belting out this aggressively belt-able song to my sister and me while teaching us a moonwalk-inspired mom dance as she ran the vacuum cleaner. To this day, anything by Cher is my go-to pump-up anthem, my cleaning playlist, my happiness-on-queue. This is probably also why my musical tastes are so firmly planted in the 70s and 80s. So for all of this and so much more, thanks, Mom! <3
J. COLE — “Apparently” — as described by auden ehringer
They’ve never heard it. They would hate it. But they should know every time I listen to this song (about a zillion times) and hear J. Cole thank his mother I think of them… thanks for always believing in me padres.
MADONNA — “The Power Of Good-Bye” — as described by ned hardy
My parents love Madonna, so I do too. This is her masterpiece.
THE ROMANTICS — “What I Like About You” — as described by siena streiber
My parents fell in love with each other while they were both dating other people. They were getting groovy on the dance floor when this classic 80’s hit came on, and their eyes locked in a stare so warm that could your melt your heart. And thank god it did, because now I can share the moment with all of you.
DUKE ELLINGTON — “Jeep’s Blues” — as described by chloe rickards
My dad used to play a game with me and my brother. It goes so: “I’ll give you a dollar if you can name the musician playing piano (or trumpet, or drums, or vocals) in this song.”
My dad is a music major who specialized in jazz, and he would do this whenever a jazz number came up on iTunes — while eating dinner, or playing a board game, or embarking on a road trip.
I never bothered to learn the difference between Miles Davis or John Coltrane or Duke Ellington when I was little, so I never actually won a dollar.
TOBIAS JESSO JR — “True Love” — as described by anthony milki
Tobias Jesso Jr.’s music feels so familiar, but there isn’t really anything quite like it (listen to his debut LP, “Goon,” from earlier this year). “True Love” is a warm seditive that will take you home and away from any trouble.
SQUEEZE — “Tempted” — as described by eugenia puglisi
Combined with my mamma singing along to this with a slight Italian accent, this has been one of my favorite feel good 80’s songs since I first heard it at age ten– despite the underlying saucy storyline. In the car, while cooking dinner, while feeling particularly nostalgic for a time you never lived in; there’s never really a bad time to play some Squeeze.
THE BANGLES — “Eternal Flame” — as described by jackson wiley roach
My mom sings this song. It’s cheesy but good. Weird to hear in grocery stores sometimes.
Editor’s note: I am cryingggggggg.
VAN MORRISON — “Moondance” — as described by benina stern
This song is late nights in the living room (but it was probably 7:30pm). I was tiny (I am tiny). Tiny enough to fit on my dad’s foot and be launched into the air, a rocket, flying forever, to the moon. Never afraid of falling or getting hurt, guided by my dad’s loving hands and Van Morrison’s saxophone pulling me back to earth.
LANA DEL REY — “Old Money” — as described by editor victor liu
My mom’s music taste is very Chinese: hokey, melodramatic tunes with hundreds of violins sobbing behind croony lyrics. She also likes Lana Del Rey.
I know. Crazy, right?
JONATHAN RICHMAN — “I Was Dancing in a Lesbian Bar” — as described by editor lawrence neil
My dad’s red Geo Prizm had a peeling cloth ceiling and a thoroughly utilized tape deck. Richman albums were my soundtrack to late nineties suburban Detroit trips for take out Chinese (Pour one out for Joy’s Kitchen and his country album). J.R. introduced me to a lot of new concepts as a kid — some bars are just alright, but the lesbian bar in the industrial zone is Friday night. I was a hit at family get-togethers when I decided to bust this one out. Full of zingers. Come for the lyrics, stay for the dance breaks.
LEA MICHELE — “Mama Who Bore Me” — as described by editor bojan srb
The music of Spring Awakening hurts like a necessary hangover.