And now that I have a teenage daughter who likes the car radio tuned to 98.3 Fly-FM ("Today's Best Music"), I've become immersed in the world of pop music in 2014. And I confess: I like it.
Mind you, there's a lot of chaff to sift away before you get to the wheat. My personal interpretation of chaff includes
- anything by Ke$ha (having a dollar sign in one's name is a real red flag for me)
- anything by Lady Gaga ("I Live for the Applause"? -- ewww)
- anything that refers to putting one's booty on the dance floor.
But here are five excellent pop songs that will make me turn the radio up louder every time. I've included video links for each. Now obviously videos need to be taken with a grain of salt: you can't assume that the song is intended to be "about" what the video portrays. But they're fun to watch all the same.
If you make it through all five, cast your vote: which is your favourite?
1. "Wake Me Up" by Avicii (vocalist Aloe Blacc) . Maybe it's because I also like country music that this blend of country and dance music appeals to me. I love the singer's voice as well. (There's an acoustic version of this song here.) And the lyrics are thought-provoking: "I can't tell where this journey will end, but I know where to start."
2. "Say Something" by A Great Big World and Christina Aguilera. Heartbreaking lyrics, gorgeous singing, touching video.
3. "Counting Stars" by One Republic. Besides this song's infectious tune, I see it as challenging us to reject the world's materialism for something more meaningful. But it's hard (as the Apostle Paul would attest in Romans 7:15-20): "I feel something so right by doing the wrong thing."
4. "Story of My Life" by One Direction. I admit it, I find these lads very endearing --- and cute image notwithstanding, many of their songs do have some substance. This is one that does. The video, in which they peruse photographs of their real-life families, is great as well. (But if you'd prefer a side-splitting spoof of the song, go here AFTER you've listened to the real thing.)
5. "Let Her Go" by Passenger. The lead singer's unique, Hobbit-y voice is the first thing that strikes you. (He even looks like a Hobbit!) The simple, moving lyrics are the next: "You only need the light when it's burning low; only miss the sun when it starts to snow; only know you love her when you let her go..."
Cast your vote in the comments! (Nope, you can't vote for the spoof video. My blog, my rules.)