- "You Are My Sunshine" and "Endless Sleep" (Jody Reynolds): My mom sang "You are my Sunshine" to me each night when she tucked me in. She changed the lyrics to say "you'll always know Emily how much Mommy loves you" and we always snapped at the pause in the chorus. I knew if I ever had a daughter that I'd sing that song to her so I sing it to Britt however I keep the original lyrics :) My dad traveled a LOT while I was growing up and he listened to music on the flights and would write down some of the lyrics to songs. He chose "Endless Sleep" to be the song he sang to me at night. I have the handwritten lyrics still and I had them hanging in my room growing up. The song is actually about someone attempting to commit suicide so kinda twisted for a lullaby but it's super special to me. I also have a lot of memories of him singing around the house. I will randomly bust out in song to some oldies tune and I love it b/c I know those songs are ingrained in me from my dad :)
- "The End of Innocence" (Don Henley) and "As I Lay My Down" (Sophie B Hawkins): My parents divorced in 1994. My mom rocked OUT to some Don Henley on the regular. I recently heard it playing in Publix and could sing every word and realized too why all of those songs meant so much to her during that time period. I also remember my brother and I listening to the Sophie B. Hawkins song and as an adult I also realize that it's about divorce.
- "Don't Take The Girl" (Tim McGraw) and "Boot Scootin' Boogie" (Brooks and Dunn): We listened to a good bit of country during the divorce (music for some cryin' lovin' or leavin' right???) My first ever concert was Martina McBride and Brooks and Dunn. "Don't Take the Girl" was my favorite song (still can make me cry!!!) and Boot Scootin' Boogie was my brothers fav!
- "Barbie Girl" (Aqua), "Fly" (Sugar Ray) and "Sugar Sugar" (The Archies): As kids my brother and friends and I all loved to make videos. Man they are AWESOME haha. I was always the director (smart move as I was behind the camera so there isn't a whole lot of embarrassing footage of me floating around!). We made a music video to both "Barbie Girl" and "Fly" and they were pretty epic. I remember one of the kids didn't know any of the words so we had him mouth "watermelon" over and over, classic :) I got to see Sugar Ray in concert in middle school and whew Mark McGrath! I remember my dad took a friend and I to the show and we were SHOCKED at how vulgar he was. Let's just say that Sugar Ray's music was nottttthing like the "Fly" single!
My brother and I dressed up with our neighbor friends during our video shoots
I did not fully escape the embarrassing footage though. In 5th grade they had us do a lip syncing competition and I did "Sugar, Sugar." My mom made me an oversized sweatshirt with candy on it and I held a big lollypop. I also preformed it on the morning video announcements. Cool kid moment FOR SURE.
- The entire Jagged Little Pill album by Alanis Morissette: Yes, it was released in 1995 making me 10-11 years old when I purchased the cd and listened to every. single. song. Pretty inappropriate? Sure. But putting that aside it's still my all time fav album. One of my favorite memories with my dad is a road trip just the two of us and dissecting every song together. I've seen her in concert several times and she's one of the most talented artists of our time.
- "Going Away to College" (and basically every Blink 182 song of all time): My freshman year in high school I moved to a new town. It was a little beach town and I was the "new kid" at a small, tight-knit school. I became fast friends with this little punk rock kid who introduced me to Blink 182. Alanis is my all-time fav artist but Blink is my all-time fav band. My little punk rocker friend was in a Blink cover band and would call me (on my personal home phone line, so cool) and leave me voicemails of "Going Away to College." We never dated or anything but it was "our song" anyway. I have seen them on tour a couple of times and I actually even got Zach (who loathes live music) to go see them a few years back. "Always" is our Blink song together. "Miss You" was also one I listened to a lot when my dad was in Iraq. Blink has always been there for me through any rough times ;) I've met Travis and saw Tom (who is my fav, of course) and he totally ignored me! Sad moment! Y'all. They are in their 40s now. How is that even possible?!?!
- "Remix to Ignition" (R. Kelly), "Hot in Herrre" (Nelly), "Toxic" (Britney Spears): The summer after high school graduation was THE BEST summer EVER. I jammed out in my VW bug all summer long driving around with friends, staying up late at sleep-overs, and laying out by the pool. I remember listening to "Ignition" on full blast when I heard the casting call for The Real World. I remember listening to "Toxic" while driving to Tally to my freshman year in college.
Gah I miss that car! Can't you just picture me with my three car seats in it? ha!
My summer crew!
- "Comfortable" and "Why Georgia" (John Mayer) and "Boston" (Augustana): While I love me some groove in the car music, there is nothing better than some good John Mayer when you're in the mood to vent. I've blasted "Why Georgia" MANY times, often while driving up 85 ;) I used to joke that if Zach and I didn't work out I'd move to Boston and work at a Starbucks near Harvard and marry a Harvard graduate ;) It was a pretty solid back up plan, right? When "Boston" came out it was my JAM and remains one of my top fav songs ever!
- The Love Below (Entire Outkast Album): The first time I rode in the car with Zach he was showing off his system in his Trailblazer and blasted this cd. I was already obsessed with some of the songs ("Ms Jackson" was my Dad's fav...every time I hear it now I still hear my dad saying "I am for REAL" haha) but hadn't heard the full thing. We both LOVED it and it was our cd the summer between freshman and sophomore year of college. I remember making him special football encouragement cards before each game and many of them had lyrics from that album :)
One of our earliest pics together :)
- "With You" (Jessica Simpson), "So Into You" (Fabolous), "Iris" (Goo Goo Dolls), "Lullaby" (Shawn Mullins), "Gold Digger" (Kayne West), "All of Me" (John Legend), "As The Deer" (church hymn), "The Blowers Daughter" (Damien Rice): When you've been with someone for over a decade you don't just have ONE song :) Zach and I have so many! "With You" was our legit "song" that we decided when we were dating to call "our song." "Lullaby" is the song that Zach says describes me the most of any song. I legit wanted "Gold Digger" played during our wedding reception but the DJ didn't do it. "All of Me" is our newest "song." We were in a rough patch and Zach simply sent me a text with a link to the you tube video of the song. It was the first time I'd heard it and it totally melted my heart that it made him think of us :) My sweet friend, Claire, sang "As The Deer" for us during our wedding ceremony and we had our first dance (and possibly our only dance EVER) as husband and wife to "The Blowers Daughter." I love hearing both of those songs and they always take me back to our wedding day!
- "Carry On" (Fun.) and "The Dance" (Garth Brooks): I've had a tough time with some of my family over the past few years. I think we all have certain songs that we can relate to and that help us in a healing process. I have songs that I often can't hear b/c they are too close to my situation ("Black Roses" from Nashville as well as "Headlights" by Eminem and Nate Ruess) but "Carry On" is like my personal anthem. I ADORE Nate Ruess and he's probably up there with John Mayer and Alanis as my favorite voice to listen to. He brings the emotion! "The Dance" is what we call "Austin's Song" and while it makes me so sad to think about Austin being gone so young, I love that even our children hear that song and talk about him.
Zach and Austin
- "Lean on Me" (The Temptations) and "Love Me Tender" (Elvis): I remember when Kye was first born and I searched and search for a song to sing him each night. I was up late nursing him and was watching tv to help stay awake. I watched 28 Days (Sandra Bullock movie) and "Lean on Me" played with the credits. It was like 2 am and that junk stuck in my head for days and it became his song. He's 7 and I still sing it to him every single night. Britt's song is "You Are My Sunshine," as I mentioned earlier, and for Tess I wanted to use "Love Me Tender" by Elvis. Britt's song is what my mom sang to me, and Tess's song makes me think of my dad. Not only does dad LOVE Elvis but we danced to "Love Me Tender" at my wedding :)
- "Hey Ho" (The Lumineers), "Home" (Phillip Phillips) and "Let It Go" (Idina Menzel): It's important to Zach and I that our kids know OUR music. That THEY have songs that will remind them of us someday the way we do some of our parents' favorite songs. Of course when Daddy loves rap music it's not always easy to find stuff that is appropriate ;) "Hey Ho" and "Home" are both "Mommy Songs" in the car and we all joke about who they are about. Britt and Kye both say "Hey Ho" is a song about them with Mommy. And of course you can't be a Disney lover without at least one Disney song on the soundtrack of your life, right? I know it's overplayed but man "Let It Go" is still an awesome song and it's one that will forever define my girls' childhoods. I think we have about 20 toys or so that all blast it on the regular :)
Real life mom moment...having to tell myself to "let it go" over and over ;)
There you have it! The songs that define the first 31 years of my life :) Seeing as I'm sure many of us are around the same age...I bet we share some similar favorite songs! I'd love to know which ones resonate with you!