As I prepare for yet another Jack Daniels-sponsored night of played-out top 40 hits, increasingly horrific dance moves, and general sloppiness of many incarnations, it comes time to reflect. Time to reflect on a semester in which I’ve experienced a monumental methodological shift in my weekly partying and the copious alcohol consumption that operates in tandem. For the last three months or so, I have been accompanied by a playlist.
It happened completely by accident. Because of the sheer variety of music I enjoy, coupled with my abnormally low tolerance for repeated listens, I have always been a staunch opponent of Party and Work Out playlists. For God’s sake, change it up. There’s so much out there that’s not Drake, it’ll blow you away. Anyway, due to my Baby Boomer level of technological savvy, it took me until Summer 2015 to discover the wondrous beauty of YouTube to MP3. Upon this life-altering revelation, I began to accumulate various “turn up” songs that I would never necessarily own but have always enjoyed pregaming to via YouTube, many of them extremely questionable to everyone else. Without even realizing it, I had curated a fucking playlist.
Now I assume nearly everyone’s familiar with the basic, triadic college night structure – 1) drinks with a small crew of close friends, 2) the larger scale “official” pregame, and 3) the main event, at which you hope to either get laid, hang with casual friends you don’t often see, get completely obliterated to celebrate/mourn an occasion, or if you have a banner night, all of the above. For some odd reason, I’ve always taken Phase 1 very seriously, except I execute it in utter solitude. In order to boost my mood, transition from work to fun, and enter the headspace required for a successful night of partying, it has always been crucial for me to have a few drinks alone to the exact party music that I want to hear, and have whatever “deeper” thoughts I need to have before I go mingle with a sea of people I pretend to like, to a soundtrack that I also – for the most part – pretend to like. This 30-minute ritual has slowly evolved into the routine that no good night of mine can start without. Sometimes it’s complemented in various douche-y ways like pushups, pullups, or a nutritious snack, but that’s a whole other issue.
So my newly acquired YouTube rips had a function all of a sudden. Starting at the beginning of the Fall semester in September, they were my soundtrack to Phase 1. I figured that as the semester wore on I would make some sort of changes to the playlist, but I guess that as I age (a whopping 21 years now), familiarity becomes more appealing. Before you know it, I’m going to have a monogamous girlfriend. Anyway, because of the narcissist that I am, I felt eager to share this playlist. I guess it was a big deal to me, at least. Just picture it: I’m pouring my first homemade Jack and Coke, putting on some sort of button down that I’d never wear if I could be socially accepted otherwise, and contemplating whether we actually have any sort of control over our own destinies. Who knows, maybe somebody somewhere else is doing the exact same weird shit.
1) Yeah Yeah Yeahs: Heads Will Roll (A-Trak Remix) – so basic it hurts
2) Sum 41: In Too Deep (Kasum Remix) – a great EDM remix that invigorates an otherwise tired, unwelcome throwback
3) ‘NSync: Tearin’ Up My Heart – yep. One of my all time favorites. Wish I were kidding
4) Backstreet Boys: Everybody (Rock Your Body) – see number 3
5) David Guetta: Titanium (feat. Sia) – how this hasn’t gotten old is beyond me. Still possibly my favorite party song for its mix of danceable beat and dramatic vocals
6) Waka Flocka Flame: No Hands (feat. Roscoe Dash & Wale) – as effective as it was in 2010
7) ScHoolboy Q: Man of the Year – that mesmerizing beat puts my mind in a place that only this song can
8) Porter Robinson: Sad Machine – who knew EDM could make you feel so intensely?
9) Cascada: I Need a Miracle – see numbers 3 and 4
10) Future: Same Damn Time – I never fuck with trap. But THIS…
11) Jay-Z: We Made It (Remix) [feat. Jay Electronica] – the fucking bars on this track. This one should be automatically programmed into every sports locker room
12) Flashdance: She’s a Maniac – do you NOT pregame to 80’s dance anthems?
13) Ariana Grande: The Way (feat. Mac Miller) – Big Pun beat plus Easy Mac plus hot chick? Sign me up.
14) Kaskade: Disarm You (feat. Ilsey) – I wrote about this here
15) The Killers: Smile Like You Mean It (Madeon Remix) – Madeon flipped this gem from Hot Fuss into something equally special
16) Madeon: Adventure (entire fucking album) – THE party album of 2015. Just mindblowing