A picture of me, taken in '99
To this day, the most defining time in my life was the summer of the year 1999. Just a note for Northern Hemisphere readers, summer in the Southern Hemisphere (I live in Australia) is the months of November, December, and January. And it truly was the best of times, and the worst of times; the best, because I'd just quit high-school, and the world seemed full of possibilities, Christmas was just around the corner, and because I live in a town that's fifty meters from the beach, this makes it a popular destination over the Christmas break, and the town population increases by a factor of ten. What this means is that there are tourist girls a-plenty, and on Christmas day and the week after it, they show off their new bikinis they've been given as Christmas presents; it was a tradition among my drinking buddies to hit the beach on Christmas day at around 11am, beer cooler in tow, and we'd ogle all the lovely ladies and their new attire.
But it was also the worst of times. Mental illness was starting to be the predominant factor in my life (I suffered from severe depression, and also what one psychologist described as "the worst case of Panic Disorder I've ever seen.") I started to self-abuse: I'd start drinking as soon as I woke up (being utterly, utterly wasted was the only way I could leave the house due to the panic disorder), I'd cut myself, then moved on to burning myself. I have to explain why I did those things, as I think we've all seen how self-abusers are treated on the internet; how they're referred to as 'emos' and that they only do it for attention, etc, but I did it because I was in such a dark and painful place that hurting myself was the only way I could feel anything; also, holding a lighter under your arm for thirty seconds, apart from giving 3rd degree burns, focused my mind and brought me out of The Pit, if only for a short time.
The reason I mention all this is just to give you an idea of why this was such a huge time in my life. And at the time, due to a bunch of other crap I won't get into, the only access to entertainment I had was a radio tuned to one of those stations that plays a mixture of Top 40 and 'classics', but that station's definition of 'classic' meant 'any song released after 1995'. Anyway, the songs they played became the soundtrack to my life at that point. Follow me after the jump to see the playlist that became the soundtrack to this era of my existence!
This list will be made up of songs that, because they were played a million times, made up part of that soundtrack. The other criteria are songs that, when I hear them now, take me back to that time in my life. Here are, in no particular order, the songs that are 'The Soundtrack To '99*: My Most Important Year' :
*Some of these songs may have come out after 1999, but keep in mind that I made that summer last for about another 3 months, just because I kept partying, so that whole time is a little fuzzy in my memory. If corrections need to be made, please let me know.
- 'Semi-Charmed Life' - Third Eye Blind
- 'Flagpole Sitta' - Harvey Danger
- 'Push' - Matchbox 20
- 'Steal My Sunshine' - Len
- 'Torn' - Natalie Imbruglia
- 'Everybody's Free (To Wear Sunscreen)' - Baz Luhrmann
- 'Every Morning' - Sugar Ray
- 'You Get What You Give' - The New Radicals
- 'Tubthumping' - Chumbawamba
- 'How Bizzare' - OMC
- 'Sex & Candy' - Marcy Playground
- 'Your Woman' - Whitetown
- 'The Thong Song' - Sisqó
- 'Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth With Money in My Hands' - Primitive Radio Gods
- 'Take A Picture' - Filter
- 'Drive' - Incubus
- 'She's So High' - Tal Bachman
- 'Hey Leonardo (She Likes Me For Me)' - Blessid Union of Souls
- 'You Oughta Know' - Alanis Morisette
- 'Bitter Sweet Symphony' - The Verve
There were many more songs from that time, and I'll probably do a 'Part 2' list at some stage in the future. What I'd really love, though, is for you other Tao writers to do a similar thing, where you make a playlist of tunes that just happened to be in the background during one of the defining eras of your life.