Disclaimer: I could just as well have named this post “A Lot of Drake Songs That Tiffany Likes.” I love people’s Get Pumped Up playlists. I think they say more about a person than any other playlist. It’s universally understood that you don’t fuck with someone else’s Get Pumped Up playlist because what contents lie inside it are private. Additionally, no one is going to grab your iPod at a party and be like “I choose to play your Workout Mix. That sounds like the best choice!” As a result, it’s the only playlist that gives its owner free reign to put whatever he or she wants. There’s no need to make sure it’s cool, or varied. It doesn’t have to ebb and flow like a playlist named after a season (**Fall** is always my best season-inspired playlist).
Well, friends, because we’re BFF, I’m sharing my Get Pumped Up playlist with you. I know you’re hoping to discover I secretly love Glee ballads or heavy metal. I’m sorry to tell you that my playlist is no more than a reflection of exactly who I am: A large, black, millionaire drug dealer.
Jay-Z – “Hate”
So the first thing that you need to know about my method of psyching myself up is that haters are a major part of it. Who are my haters? I’m not really sure. I don’t know if I have any. I mean, I’d assume that some people are like ‘God I hate that girl. What is up with her sandwich obsession and why does she apologize and turn bright red every time she very slightly bumps my foot or leg with hers?’ or some variation of that, but I doubt they care enough to be actual haters.
I think the reason that I want haters is because I know how much I kind of love the people I hate. For me, hatred equals obsession. My hate-ees(?) range from celebrities to That Girl from That One Class in college who was constantly trying to prove that she should have tested into a higher level of music theory outright (dude, you took the test. You didn’t have enough Harmony skillz for Harmony 2. Quit asking about Ionian scales already, we’ll get to it next semester). I follow these people more than my best friends because of how hungry I am for more ammunition. I am giddy in my hatred and I can only hope that there’s at least one person out there in the world who hates me enough to stalk the shit out of me. You hear that, hater(s)? I LOVE YOU TOO. [Update – in between writing this post and Tuesday I have discovered someone who wrote a pretty bad review of my eBook and the website it’s on keeps tweeting about it. SO I guess I sort of have a hater, at least for right now. Win?]
Ok, so back to hyping myself up. Because I don’t know if they’re real of not, I have to focus on who I think my haters are and then I hype myself by thinking about all the ways I’m “showing them”.
Yeah, mean bag lady from the supermarket. Look at me now. Jogging.
Drake – “The Motto”
There are some great, nay, perfect hype up lines in this. “Go uptown New York City big,” is a good one. It’s where I discovered YOLO, which was a wonderful thing for a few moments before the internet or hipsters or something ruined it. Whatever, I still love YOLO. But the reason this song is one of my ultimate hype of songs is because of the line “How ya feel/ How ya feel/ How ya feel/ 25 sitting on 25 mil.”
While I am 27 sitting on the 25 cents I have in my Bank of America savings account, and even that only exists because I have the Keep the Change program, sometimes I feel awesome and I think I can relate to how awesome Drake feels.
Drake & Rihanna – “Take Care”
This song makes me feel good about being young and making bad choices (parents, shield your children from Rihanna at all costs). Because being in a relationship is (wonderful) boring, listening to this song takes me back to the last time I was single, which was also boring, but I like to remember it as being dramatic. Lines like, “What’s a life with no fun / Please, don’t be so ashamed / I’ve had mine, you’ve had yours / We both know / We know,” and “Dealing with a heart that I didn’t break.”
So here’s the part in the blog post where you’ve started judging me. REMEMBER WHAT I SAID AT THE BEGINNING. Pumped up playlists are great because they’re terrible, shameful reminders of all the ways in which we take ourselves and our lives too seriously.
Young Jeezy – “Put On”
I don’t know if anything pumps me up more than songs about Atlanta by rappers from Atlanta. I don’t actually know what constitutes the act of ‘putting on,’ but I assume it has a something to do with showing the haters that Atlanta is the best.
What now, person who grew up in Cincinatti who got the last sesame bagel this morning? I’m putting on for my city significantly harder than you are putting on for Cincinatti. Are you even putting on for Cincinatti at all?
JoJo – “Get out”
There’s something so girl powery about this song. The closest thing I’ve ever had to being cheated on was when the compulsive liar I was “if I DID want to be in a relationship it would definitely be with you”-ing at the time had some sort of make out/hickey competition after I’d gone home to go to sleep because I had to get up for work at Waffle House in the morning. I don’t think it really count as being cheated on, but again in my love of dramatizing past situations in my mind I like to think about this experience as having actually been a music video in which I stood on some sort of stage in front of all of our friends and sang this, interspersed with B roll footage of my laying on my bed looking skinny and sad.
Drake – “Money to Blow”
Best line – “I am what everybody in my past didn’t want me to be”
Guess what freshman year judge of my vocal proficiency exam who called me not a very musical student? I’m a project manager now.
2 Chainz – “I’m different”
Because I am different, goddammit.
Rihanna – “Good Girl Gone Bad”
Seriously, why would anyone ever let their child listen to Rihanna? This is another dramatizing my past song. I’m pretty sure that I have not gone bad in any of the ways that Rihanna is warning men I may be forced to go bad if they become “The Reason” by always going out with their boys or something. I don’t think I really understand what this song is about, actually.
Ke$ha – “Tik Tok”
This is on everyone’s pumped up playlist… right?
T.I. – “Tell ’em I said that”
Along with its menacing beat, the key line in this song for me is “These n(words)s ain’t G!” Back when I did floral sales, I used to play this on the way to meetings to get myself in the zone to sell. I’d stand there on the train, dressed in a pencil skirt and holding a giant binder full of flower pictures and imagine the meeting. I was going to give a presentation so good that at the end the restaurant owner would lean back in his chair and think, “Wow. I never thought about it before, but my callas lilies really aren’t G, are they? I’ve got to buy this chick’s flowers.”
T.I. – “I’m Back”
THEY SET A CAR ON FIRE IN THE MUSIC VIDEO. T.I. IS FROM ATLANTA. I PUT ON FOR MY CITY.
Lil Wayne – “Get High, Rule The World”
I retired this song a while back, but I think it deserves to be noted. First because this list doesn’t adequately express my love of Weezy, but second because there was a year or two where this was my anthem. It was definitely during my stoned music school phase when I liked to delude myself into believe that if I were to get high, I might still be able to rule the world. If I did my own mixtape version of Lil Wayne’s version, it would be “Get High, Get a Mediocre Score on my LSAT Prep Test.”
Ne Yo -“Miss Independent” ( the alternate option is Webbie’s “I-N-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-T” depending on my mood) –
There was a big “She Work Hard for The Money” theme in 2009 pop songs. I think Keri Hilson had something to do with it, but I was way into it. The other thing that happened in 2009 was that I moved home from college and right back into my parent’s house. If there really were a song for me, it would be something like “C-O-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-T / You know what dat means? / She got her parents house/ she got her parents car / they get a tax break / she got a bachelor of arts.”
Even now, I can’t listen to Ne Yo croon about this gorgeous, well established woman and think “that’s totally me.” I pay my own bills (sort of) and sometimes I put on a pencil skirt and tuck in my shirt, but I usually discover it has some stain from whenever the last time I was feeling like a Boss and treated myself to Starbucks, which I promptly spilled on my Boss-gear. When it comes down to it, the only “own thing” I have is $2,500 in credit card debit. That’s allllll mine.
Oh! One other reason why I get pumped up by Webbie’s take on self-sufficient ladies is because it’s a song with spelling in it. AREN’T SONGS WITH SPELLING THE BEST?? I swear the only reason I supported Fergie’s solo career was because I had so much fun spelling with her.
Honorable mention: Drake’s “Make Me Proud“. This song has SO MANY of my favorite pumped up lines, and I love the idea of being loved because I may one day make the decision to run on the treadmill and only eat salad, but then Nikki Minaj comes in and starts bragging about her vagina and it ruins all of it for me.
Song that should not be on anyone’s playlist and frankly should not exist: The Black Eyed Pea’s “I got a Feeling”. If you hear this song while you’re getting ready to go out, don’t go out. Your night is going to be a bad night.
Peace, love and peace and love to all my hatttttttersssssss,