I’m not sure how much ground I have to stand on here, but I have to get this off my chest, ask some questions, and maybe spur a discussion. Last night I was doing my usual Friday night thing – over at a friend’s apartment getting ready to go out in Boston (yes, pre-gaming). Things started off great; I walked in and there was some House music playing. I recall hearing artists like Dada Life and Kaskade which I never have a problem with. Rick Ross made an appearance for a bit but that just didn’t fit the mood at all. Eventually the music stopped for an extended amount of time, so I took liberties and attached my iPhone to the speakers. My “Recently Added” playlist included A-Trak, Wolfgang Gartner, and Tommy Trash but they were also songs I figured everyone would enjoy as a way to get pumped up for the night. Well, I was wrong. At least in the eyes of the females in attendance. I stepped out of the room only to come back to Country music being played off my iPhone. Now I don’t own any Country music so I could only assume my friend Jenny put on Pandora and I couldn’t have been more correct. I HATE Country music. It’s the only genre of music I genuinely hate. It’s cheesy and boring and just makes me cringe – I’ll take Lady Gaga on repeat before I sit down and listen to Country.
Anyways, the other ladies walked into the room and started singing along until I unplugged my iPhone from the speakers and they collectively made a disappointed “awww” sound. The next song played? “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen (watch that video it’s not what you think). Following “CMM” came an onslaught of Top 40s songs that all the girls knew and had me feeling about as unenthused as I could get. I tried to fight it but it wasn’t worth the battle because I knew I was going to lose. And then Jenny made a statement that will stick with me for a while: “Jon, we want to hear songs that are on the radio.”
I understand Jenny and the other ladies in attendance don’t represent the general population, but more often than not this is how it goes. It’s the most mind-boggling and frustrating situation for me not just because the songs selected are often cheesy and boring but because they’re played over and over and over again at the bars, at the gym, and on TV (and obviously on the radio). Again, I’m generalizing and this isn’t true of everyone, but why do girls keep listening to the same songs and why do they continue to want to hear them over and over again, especially when they’re partying? Is it because they can sing along and want a sense of belonging? Do they identify with the artists and the lyrics being sung (even though the writers are often the producers)? Is it because the radio tells them to listen to it?
Maybe I’m an anomaly but I like hearing NEW songs. I like variety and I like it the most when I’m out at a show and I hear some new bomb that makes me say “holy shit what is this?” I also don’t understand why there’s all this emphasis on Top 40s songs, but there is also dislike from those same people towards House music and other Electronic tunes. Do these girls not realize that the formula of most Top 40s songs involves a four-on-the-floor beat just like House tracks do? Is the only difference a catchy hook and some cheesy lyrics? The best part about last night was when my friend Mike put on the 4FRNT remix of “Somebody That I Used to Know” by Gotye. There was an instant singalong and these girls didn’t even realize (or care) that it was an Electro-House remix. I’ve known about this compromise since I began DJing in Boston nightclubs/bars. Girls want Top 40s and when girls are happy, guys are happy, and bar managers are happy. So I’ve managed to find a bunch of Top 40s remixes that please me as a DJ and as a fan of EDM, while also allowing the females to remain happy. Because hey, if you can’t beat them you have to join them. It sucks, I’ll never understand it but it is what it is.
Feel free to join the conversation and let me know what you think. All comments are appreciated!
Some Decent Top 40s Remixes:
Carly Rae Japsen – Call Me Maybe (Reidiculous Remix)
Ellie Goulding – Lights (Stiletto Remix)
Fun – We Are Young (Alvin Risk Remix)
Whitney Houston – How Will I Know (VOODOO FARM Remix)
Lady Gaga – Born This Way (Zedd Remix)
If you have some awesome Top 40s remixes that shake dance floors please let me know!