Day One: Your Favorite Songv"Oh! Sweet Nuthin'" - The Velvet Underground (1970)
Not much more to be said about this song, the highlight of my favorite VU album, "Loaded," that has not already been said. The way the song retains a sort of laid-back charm while also building to such an intense climax...it's fairly unequaled in the rock pantheon, near as I can tell.
Day Two: Your Least Favorite Songv"Laid" - James (1993)
I know, I know, it's the second Ranker list I've made with this song on it. (My "One Hit Wonders of the '90s" list was the first). But that's unintentional, I swear! I'm just being honest. This song makes me want to shoot myself in the brain. Everything from the cheesy, twee "oh isn't this dirty?" lyrics to lead singer Tim Booth's ridiculous wail - like he's failing a yodel audition - makes me insane with rage.
Even more maddening? Every time I tell someone how much I hate this song, I usually hear back that the person is a big fan.
Day Three: A Song That Makes You Happyv"The Village Green Preservation Society" - The Kinks (1968)
Is there a more goofy, funny, BRITISH song ever written than the title track from my favorite Kinks album? The song itself is so happy, Ray Davies enthusiasm is just infectious.
Day Four: A Song That Makes You Sadv"Rest My Head Against the Wall" - Heatmiser (1996)
This lament about alienation, addiction and desperation is so dead-on and arresting, it would be sad on its own. But it doesn't help that it's from the late Elliott Smith's band, Heatmiser.
Day Five: A Song That Reminds You of Someonev"Pony" - Ginuwine (1996)
My freshman year at college, my roommate Chris Wild became peculiarly obsessed with Ginuwine's "Pony." One of my most vivid memories of that year of my life is sleeping in my room or studying at 3:30 am and hearing Chris enter the apartment singing this song at the the top of his lungs.
Day Six: A Song That Reminds You of Somewherev"2 Wicky" - Hooverphonic (1996)
That same freshman year at UCLA, I was a DJ at the campus radio station. (We didn't actually have a transmitter, so the only way to hear the broadcast was on a TV in one of the dorms.) I tended to draw shifts no one else wanted, like Saturday AM. Despite all the drawbacks, the playlists we were featuring were fantastic...
Day Seven: A Song That Reminds You of a Certain Eventv"Linger" - The Cranberries (1993)
It's 1993. I'm on my way to the very first of many high school speech and debate tournaments. I'm in a car with Ron White II. "Linger" is on the radio. I'm not sure why this particular moment in time sticks in my memory so intensely, but I can recall every detail. I think of it every time I hear this song.
Day Eight: A Song That You Know All the Words Tov"Debra" - Beck (1999)
Not only do I know all the words to Beck's "Debra," I feel compelled to sing them every time I go to Glendale. Which it turns out is very near my apartment.
Day Nine: A Song You Can Dance Tov"The Safety Dance" - Men Without Hats (1982)
Anyone can do The Safety Dance. It's really just moving one arm horizontally over your head with the other one parallel and in the opposite direction near your mid-section. Also, you need a midget dressed like a jester. But that's it!
Day Ten: A Song That Makes You Fall Asleepv"Tonight in Bilbao" - Sun Kil Moon (2008)
I'm not being figurative. I have literally fallen asleep to this song more than once. Don't even mean that in a bad way. It's just very soothing. A good song, but just monotonous enough to cause me to drift off into a peaceful slumber...
Day Eleven: A Song From Your Favorite Bandv"Grounded" - Pavement (1995)
After seeing Pavement's reunion show at the Hollywood Bowl last year, I basically was sold on citing them as my "favorite band." (Radiohead is a pretty close second.) Here's one of my favorite Pavement tracks, from their underrated "Wowie Zowie" LP.
Day Twelve: A Song From a Band You Hatev"Rock Lobster" - The B-52's (1978)
Those who know me have probably heard me complain about the B-52's, and more specifically about Fred Schneider, the most irritating man in rock. "Rock Lobster" encapsulates everything I can't stand about them: cheesy sound effects, repetition, vapid lyrics and of course the use of "camp" to make the s**ttiness of the project seem acceptable.
Day Thirteen: A Song That Is a Guilty Pleasurev"Use Somebody" - Kings of Leon (2008)
I know, I know, Kings of Leon are cheesy, especially this album, which also includes the ludicrously sophomoric "Sex on Fire" song. But when "Use Somebody" comes on the radio...I gotta admit...I don't turn the dial. It's so goofy yet painfully, awkwardly sincere, it kind of works.
Day Fourteen: A Song No One Would Expect You To Likev"The Seed (2.0)" - The Roots featuring Cody ChesnuTT (2002)
This song has a lot of things working against it. Mainly the extraordinarily silly on-the-nose lyrics and the general throwback cheesiness of Cody ChesnuTT (even the spelling of his NAME like that!). But what can I say? I dig it...
Day Fifteen: A Song That Describes Youv"I Play If Off Legit" - Ween (1992)
My ma bought me a cool shirt, when I wear it I'm the s**t. I'm really not that legit, my mom bought it.
Day Sixteen: A Song You Used to Love But Now Hatev"Mr. Jones" - Counting Crows (1993)
When this song was new, I thought it was catchy as hell. I got the album, I even went to see Counting Crows at Universal Amphitheater (now Gibson Amphitheater) that year. Now I just find it irritating and silly. Not sure what happened. (See also: Spin Doctors)