Set it to purée

“Now the making of a good compilation tape is a very subtle art. Many do’s and don’t’s. First of all you’re using someone else’s poetry to express how you feel. This is a very delicate thing.” – Rob Gordon, High Fidelity

What’s more fun than making a music mix? Making it via e-mail with friends, of course — especially friends with extremely different musical perspectives. So we did. The rules of the game were that we would rotate theme selection and then pick songs one after another. You didn’t have to defend your selection (though some of them begged defense) but each person got one veto per mix. After looking at these mixes I’m sure you wish you had a few too.


The Top 15 Choons You Will Rock Out To Till The Day You Die.
(but won’t admit publicly…until now)

  • Unbelievable – EMF (Unbelievable [single], 1990)
  • The Stroke – Billy Squier (Don’t Say No, 1990)
  • Night Fever – Bee Gees (Saturday Night Fever: The Original Movie Soundtrack, 1977)
  • Fire It Up – Busta Ryhmes (Turn It Up/Fire It Up [single], 1998)
  • The Devil Went Down To Georgia – The Charlie Daniels Band (Million Mile Reflections, 1979)
  • Parents Just Don’t Understand – DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince (He’s the DJ, I’m the Rapper, 1988)
  • Here I Go Again – Whitesnake (Whitesnake, 1987)
  • Love Machine – Girls Aloud (What Will The Neighbours Say?, 2004)
  • Man! I Feel Like a Woman – Shania Twain (Come on Over, 1997)
  • Rock Your Body – Justin Timberlake [Sander K retouch] (Rock Your Body (single), 2003)
  • America – Neil Diamond (The Jazz Singer [soundtrack], 1980)
  • I Wanna Be Your Lover – Prince (Prince (s/t), 1979)
  • Billie Jean – Michael Jackson (Thriller, 1982)
  • Jesus Built My Hotrod [Redline/Whiteline version] (Jesus Built My Hotrod [single], 1991)
  • Jane – Jefferson Starship (Freedom at Point Zero, 1979)


Musical Meds
Songs that can make your mood do a 180°

  • Hazy Shade of Winter – Bangles (Less Than Zero [soundtrack], 1987)
  • Sixyten – Boards of Canada (Music Has The Right to Children, 1997)
  • Electric Avenue – Eddy Grant (Electric Avenue [single], 1981)
  • Oblivious – Aztec Camera (High Land, Hard Rain, 1983)
  • Sexuality – Billy Bragg (Don’t Try This At Home, 1991)
  • Gorecki – Lamb (Lamb [s/t], 1996)
  • Uncertain Smile – The The (Soul Mining, 1983)
  • Love Song – The Ocean Blue (The Ocean Blue [s/t], 1989)
  • The Same Deep Water As You – The Cure (Disintegration, 1989)
  • In the Garden / You Send Me / Allegheny – Van Morrison (A Night in San Francisco, 1994)
  • Impact (The Earth is Burning) – Orbital (Orbital 2 [The Brown Album], 1993)
  • Song 2 – Blur (Blur [s/t], 1997)
  • Add It Up – Violent Femmes (Violent Femmes [s/t], 1983)
  • Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me – The Smiths (Strangeways, Here We Come, 1990)
  • It’s The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) – R.E.M. (Document, 1987)

Agree, disagree? Discuss.

3 Responses to “Set it to purée”

  1. 2B's says :

    So are these replacing your annual Christmas mix? Also, I have to ask — which songs are yours? My guesses are Jesus Built My Hotrod and Impact (The Earth is Burning). Am I close?

  2. John says :

    Ah, a good question. Not sure I want to admit this, but my picks for the first mix were Jesus Built My Hotrod, America, Love Machine, The Devil Went Down To Georgia, and The Stroke. For the second mix they were Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Love Me, Impact (The Earth Is Burning), Love Song, Sexuality, and Sixtyten. Happy now?

  3. Whit says :

    I love the idea. I also love your themes. I did something similar with an email listserv I belong to and the theme was “Sunday Morning” (inspired by the Commodores “Easy”). It’s now one of my favorite playlists. I have another “Good Mood” playlist that might add nicely to your Meds list. One recent addition to it was “Goods” by Mates of State. Try to listen to it and stay grumpy, I dare you. You can’t do it.