MAINSTAYS ON THE MIXTAPES I MADE FOR GIRLS IN HIGH SCHOOL
My only pathway to talking to pretty girls in high school was through burned CDs. I had 80 minutes to send a clear message that they should all break up with their strong football boyfriends and come kiss in my basement.
- •"Landlocked Blues" - Bright EyesConor Oberst's best sick-sweet love ballad, and the easiest to learn on an acoustic guitar and then sarcastically play at a party like I didn't learn it
- •"Wrestlers" - Hot ChipOne big metaphor for how love is like competitive wrestling, which I'm not sure I'm on board with anymore, but made sense to me then
- •"New York I Love You..." - LCD SoundsystemA slow-burner that I used to say was the musical pair to "Notes From The Underground". I do not think I properly understood either
- •"No Name #2" - Elliott SmithAlways marking the emotional nadir of the mixtape, Elliott Smith songs connoted my depth of feeling and possible obsession with celebrity suicides.
- •"Everywhere" - Vampire Weekend (fleetwood Mac cover)A good cover does double duty on a mixtape, because it demonstrates your vast worldliness and learnedness about intellectual property
- •"Chelsea Hotel No. 2" - Leonard CohenA sleepy song with an offhand reference to a midday blowjob
- •"Home" - Kanye West ft. John LegendThe original version of what became Homecoming ft. Chris Martin. Better and cooler and ideal for tracks 8-10 when the sad ballads wore thin
- •"Hummingbird" - WilcoI used the opening line as the inspiration for a bad short story that I wrote. "Remember to remember me....."
- •"Northern Lights" - BowerbirdsSweet, pretty song about sweet, pretty lights in the sky.
- •"Jealous Guy" - John LennonA slight note of caution to the listener that I can be a violent and jealous bad boy
- •"Love Me Tender" - Norah JonesVery subtle messaging here. An Elvis cover, and a really great one at that. Norah Jones got so popular that everyone had to pretend not to love her, but I refuse.
- •"Re: Stacks" - Bon IverThe clear winner of his first album. "When your mooOOoOooney's gone, and you're drunk as hell".
- •"Fireworks" - Animal CollectiveShort by Animal Collective standards and gets to the melody much more quickly. Still takes up a lot of real estate with 6 minutes but it is worth it.
- •"Can You Tell" - Ra Ra RiotI saw this band play like 8 times. They played downbeat indie stuff with really good strings accompaniment
- •"Fake Empire" - The NationalWhen I was 17 I went to a National concert and called a girl on my Nextel phone up so she could listen to them play this song. I bought her a tshirt.
- •"Walkabout" - Atlas SoundStill one of my favorite songs in the world
- •"Two Doves"- Dirty ProjectorsGerAaaaaaaaanium Kiiiiiissses