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Music generally promotes associations in our heads, whether it be about certain people, different periods of time in our childhood and adolescence as well as our collective experience of life thus far, through the music we shared and played. That being said, it’s easy to see why music is such a powerful tool. It takes you back to memories of singing at the back of your dad’s car (at the top of your lungs) to whatever was playing on the radio, music played at family weddings and gatherings and that song they played at your senior prom. Music is timeless. For this reason, I’ve pulled together a list of tracks that will undoubtedly take you on a walk down memory lane.

 

1. Michael Jackson- “Beat It” 1982

Family events? Crazy aunts and uncles thinking they can still dance? Need I even say anymore.

2. Justin Bieber- “Baby” 2010

It’s one of those cringey songs we can never escape. We all know the lyrics, we all sang it whether we admit or not. It’s just one of those guilty pleasures.

3. Oasis- “Wonderwall” 1995

Very nostalgic. Some of us weren’t even born but the fact that it is still streamed to this day proves its timeless legacy as one of the ultimate romantic songs. Who wouldn’t want to be someone’s Wonderwall?

4. Destiny’s Child- “Crazy” 2003

This was THE song. 2003 feels so ancient but the memories of you as a kid dressing up in your best sass and singing with your friends or cousins in front of the mirror definitely doesn’t.

5. Beyoncé- “Halo” 2008

Cue flashbacks of you as a kid imagining yourself as heartbroken as our Queen B. Life was tough as a heartbroken nine-year-old.

6. David Bowie- “Heroes” 1977

Not everyone grew up with Bowie, but thanks to your parents and movies like The Perks of Being a Wallflower (a personal fave) you might have heard his masterwork “Heroes”. This song conjures up memories of adolescence dreaming about your life as you wanted it to be. The special time of teen angst and frustration. To quote Charlie, “We accept the love we think we deserve.”

7. Wiz Khalifa and Snoop Dogg- “Young, Wild and Free” 2011

High school days were sweet singing these with your besties. Released in 2011 this became a party anthem everywhere. At school sports rallies, house parties, clubs, every fun, free party setting imaginable.

 

8. ABBA- “Dancing Queen” 1979

Yeah, I know. We just had to go as far back as the seventies. Deny it or not but ABBA forms a part, however small, in the upbringing of most humans on this earth. They’re simply one of those bands that, however old or dated, are undeniably just that good that you’ll know at least one song. Even a line out of one song. Don’t question it.

9. Nirvana- “Teen Spirit” 1995

Yes, they’re an actual band, not just that t-shirt with the half smiley yellow face. For those with a grunge side to their musical tastes, this is a timeless teen spirit anthem. It will always be relevant. Nirvana will always be relevant. Enough said.

10. Taylor Swift- ”Love Story” 2008 Who remembers the time of being a girl belting this out whenever it came on MTV? Somehow this song and the video only made the ever-fictitious Romeo/ Prince Charming just that much more fictitious. Thanks for giving us unrealistic expectations Tay.

Amber is a final year architecture student at the University of Cape Town. A self-confessed aesthete and avid writer/reader- she is passionate about social justice with hopes of healing the world. 
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