Playlist – New Jersey
Verbose as we are, there is no way we can spend the next year constantly
yelling talking to each other. Terrible as it may sound to the ears of an outsider, singing as loudly as possible is a frequent occurrence in The Highland Flinger (THF). We will make a playlist of what we’re slappin’ the air bass to. Each list will contain songs from artists/bands from the state or will allude to the state in some way.
1. Bruce Springsteen – Born To Run
We gotta get out while we’re young, ’cause tramps like us, baby we were born to run. Ah, The Boss knows how to speak to two RV’ers.
2. Whitney Houston – I Wanna Dance With Somebody
I think every woman (and man, let’s be honest) has picked up a brush and sang into it when this song comes on. It’s visceral. You can’t stop it. I’m sitting in a Dunkin Donuts doing it right now.
And I know we’ve all re-watched a lot of Whitney since her untimely death earlier this year, but this is a must watch. The eyeshadow, the earrings, the person-less feet, the crimped hair, the cheesy graphics. It’s perfect:
3. Frank Sinatra – Come Fly With Me
What else can be said about “Ol’ Blue Eyes” that you don’t already know? Here’s one fun fact: “The Rat Pack” originally centered around Humphrey Bogart, although Sinatra was a charter member. Legend has it that the group got its name when Lauren Bacall, after seeing her husband (Bogart) and his friends return from a night in Las Vegas, said words to the effect of “You look like a goddamn rat pack.”
4. The Fugees – No Woman, No Cry
While the Fugees had many awesome songs of their own, we love this version of the Bob Marley classic. Sadly, it doesn’t seem likely that the Fuguees will regroup, as both Wyclef Jean and Pras Michel have been very outspoken about never again working with Lauryn Hill, the only woman in the group.
5. Bon Jovi – Livin’ On A Prayer
If people know 5 things about New Jersey, Bon Jovi is 1 of them.
6. Wyclef Jean- Till November
Though he grew up in New Jersey, Wyclef Jean was born in Croix-des-Bouquets, Haiti. In 2005, Wyclef started the Yéle Haiti Foundation to provide “emergency relief, employment, youth development and education and tree planting and agriculture” to the people of Haiti. He also tried to run for president in Haiti, though he was ineligible for office. He hadn’t met the requirement of living in Haiti for the five years prior to taking office.
7. My Chemical Romance – Welcome To The Black Parade
My Chemical Romance hails from Jersey City. This is the song that the LA Kings used as their parade song…after they beat the New Jersey Devils in the Stanley Cup Finals this year. Awkward.
8. Method Man, Redman – Da Rockwilder
Redman is the only one of the two who is from New Jersey, while Method Man grew up in nearby Staten Island, NY. Method Man gets a pass though for having a small role in the movie Garden State, a film about New Jersey with the title doubling as the state’s nickname.
9. Naughty by Nature – O.P.P
How many people who say they are “Down with O.P.P.” (because they respond, “Yeah you know me”) actually know what they are agreeing to?
10. Faith Evans – All Night Long
Known primarily as the widow to rapper “Notorious B.I.G.” back in 1997, Faith Evans continued to pump out sultry R&B and soul albums throughout the years, with her most recent album “Gone Already” debuting in 2010.
11. Queen Latifah – U.N.I.T.Y.
Dana Elaine Owens, AKA Queen Latifah wrote U.N.I.T.Y to address the disrespect toward women in society. The song won a Grammy and is forever emblazoned in my head when I write the word “unity”.
12. Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons – Sherry
This band took the US and the world by storm in the early 60s, and have become known as the biggest rock band before The Beatles. The group still resonates with young audiences today, thanks to the popular musical Jersey Boys based on Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons.
13. Blondie – Heart Of Glass
When you think of Blondie, you probably think of Deborah Ann Harry. Though neither her name or even stage name are Blondie, she very obviously came to be the face of the group with her long bleach blond hair, among 4 dark haired men.
14. Skid Row – I Remember You
Power ballads are incredible cultural artifacts that prove that the 80s were a magical time. When else in time could you rock this look?
15. Jonas Brothers – Burnin’ Up
I don’t know exactly why, but I was shocked to find out that the Jonas brothers were from the shore region of New Jersey. It just doesn’t feel like a place where Disney Channel pop boy bands come from. If you would have had me guess before looking it up, I probably would’ve said something like Florida. New Jersey can surprise you like that.
Spotify: New Jersey