So, yesterday I was on Facebook when my friend, Rox, posted that she was listening to the Spice Girls, so we got talking about the songs we like the most. At the Spice Girls’ peak, my sister, Kat, and her crew listened to them, so I had to listen and know. Of course, the internet was relatively new, and surprise, surprise nude pics of Ginger Spice, Geri Halliwell, from her model days surfaced. For my teenage and early 20-something self, this was NOT a bad thing! My sister had her music, and I had my masturbatory fantasies…life was good. But, you know when you hear something so much, it starts growing on you…and, you’re like, “fuck,” but you listen anyway? That was me. I actually started to dig the Spice Girls…especially Posh Spice, Victoria Beckham. She had that right mix of fashionista with a slight undercurrent of goth.
Now, I wasn’t into the more Poppy stuff, I liked the slower, more heartfelt tunes like 2 Become 1, Viva Forever, Mama, and Goodbye, which I always kinda thought was their swansong. These songs sang about love, friendship, and letting go…everything I’d gone through with my best friend, Noe, alone…not to mention getting out on my own with my own relationships with no parental security blanket right there.
From there, this got me thinking of other bands that’ve touched me along the way in this thing we call life. There was New Kids on the Block that my brother, Joey, and I sang to since shared a room from the time I was adopted. My favorites were “Please Don’t Go Girl,” Cover Girl,” and “Step by Step” to name a few. We used to watch a show titled Kids Incorporated on Disney. It birthed Martika...swoon. I loved and still love her song, the haunting “Toy Soldiers,” which Eminem remade with different, but haunting results. Oh, and Belinda Carlisle’s “Mad About You” and “Nobody Owns Me”…swoon again! Back then, I didn’t know Ricky Martin was actually singing to me!
Then, there was Motley Crue, Extreme, and Poison, who we were ironically watching the video for their song, “Life Goes On,” when everything was going down at Noe’s before the ambulance took him away and he died. Extreme’s “More Than Words,” Noe and I’d sing together in the guest bedroom of our Chatham pad when we’d have sleepovers. I know, I know, gay and cliché, but hey, we were kids and bros in the late 80s, early 90s. And, who didn’t like the Crue…if not for their heavy hitting metal, but their androgynist look with their pentagrams that we thought were Satanic back in the day… Sigil of Baphomets, pentagrams with the goat’s head in the middle, are Satanic. It was the release of teenage angst. To this day, I still keep up with those groups if they’re still around or the members’ projects.
Of course, these are only a few of the defining groups that made my teen years and 20s, and that I hold dear 20 years later even still. So now, it’s your turn. What groups, singers you’re your past define you now? Sound off.
And, be good to each other.
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