Guilty Pleasures: My dirty little secrets

guilty-pleasures-dirty-secretsEveryone has that one track on their MP3 player (or far more than I would like to admit in my case) that they try to skip or hide when it comes on in public. I personally use the excuse that “my wife shares the device” and that “it must be something she put on it” to avoid the embarrassment of people thinking I actually like it. However, I cannot be alone here and I’m willing to put my shame to one side so that we can maybe discuss the music that just seems to make sense when it probably shouldn’t.

To create some perspective, here’s a little glimpse of my musical background. Ever since hearing Appetite For Destruction at the young age of 8 I’ve always leaned towards the guitar-driven rock and metal scene when it comes to my taste in music but I’m certainly not closed off to any other genres. In fact, the kitchen radio is stuck on a certain station that churns out the same 5-10 pop songs all days so I’m “subjected” to pop on a daily basis. The wife is definitely getting the blame for that one! So it’s safe to say that with the likes of Maiden, Metallica and Machine Head among my favourite bands I’m not your average pop nerd.

In order to get this discussion started I’ve listed ten tracks from the 5,479 I currently have shuffling around on my ipod, that I’d usually be swift in denying all knowledge of, and the reasons why they make sense to me and can call my musical library their home.

Adele – Set Fire to the Rain
There was a time when you couldn’t change radio stations without hearing this song. Adele is one of those artists that people love or hate and I’m firmly in the camp of the former. A soothing singing voice and sensible lyrics, apart from this track you could say, have kept me going back to Adele, sometimes on repeat.

Counting Crows – Mr Jones
I can’t help but sing along to this song. It’s cool, funky and tells the story of a man who is pining for success as a musician. Who doesn’t want to be a big star? Probably not the most embarrassing track but it turns out to be once I start belting it out at the top of my lungs.

Ed Sheeran – The A Team
Such a simple song. When I heard it for the first time I was out and about in town and couldn’t wait to get home so I could look it up. I must have listened to it a dozen times in a row before trying to emulate it on my guitar, not so much with the singing this time…

Goldie Lookin Chain – Half Man Half Machine
GLC have never been fashionable but the album gets a frequent outing on my iPod when I need cheering up. Half Man Half Machine is just awesome, the guy thinks he’s a robot, the cheap and cheerful chorus makes me chuckle and you’ve got lines like “I’m like C3PO but with pubes and hair”, what more can I say? Hilarious!!

Gotye – Somebody That I Used to Know
Ever-so-slightly overplayed after it’s release, this one was another which split public opinion. I’m a bit of a sucker for a song that tells a story and this track does that very well. The guy’s clearly pissed off that his recent relationship has been made out to be worthless and we also find that he was a bit of an arse via the lyrics of Kimbra who cameos toward the end to give the other side of the story. Catchy little baseline adds to the popularity in my book.

Judy Garland – Somewhere Over the Rainbow
I’ve had this track on my iPod since my wee granny’s funeral and it just reminds me of her and I’ll never remove it. Without the sentimental meaning behind it, it’s an absolute classic with a beautiful arrangement and vocal. Seeing as we’re being open here, I’ll also admit it brings a tear to my eye when it pops up on shuffle.

Lady Gaga – The Edge of Glory
This song is ALWAYS played when we have parties in the house and is accompanied by some high-pitched attempts at signing by my wife and her crazy pals. I have to admit that I don’t mind it even half as much as I usually say I do. This song just reminds me of good times with family and friends.

Outkast – Hey Ya!
I reckon I won’t be alone with this one. If you don’t like this song or don’t know the dance moves to this then I’m afraid I don’t think I like you. It’s probably the most well-known and catchy chorus in pop since the turn of the millennium and for that reason I was hooked. Sing it with me… Heyyyyyyy yaaaaaaa!!!

Ryan Adams – Firecracker
A bit of country never hurt anyone. This song in particular just ticks a lot of boxes for me and I can’t help but sing along to it with a bit of a Southern State drawl. If only I could play the harmonica I’d be doing the whole ‘bedroom rockstar’ with this one.

Skrillex – Bangarang
I’m forever slating glitch-hop, electro-house music but I cannot explain how this one stands out for me. If there is one track in this list that kinda makes me hate myself a little bit then this is it.  I have one mate in particular who will take great pleasure in reading this as he has been the butt of many a joke based on his musical tastes. Better turn my phone off for a while.

So what tracks are you ashamed of? Drop them, and your reasons for loving them, in the comments below and let’s see who really has something to hide.

Alan Gray

Senior Writer and Editor at Musicscramble. Listens to a wide range of music. A sucker for a heavy bass line and a thundering guitar hook.

Loves getting his gig on but also loves to get behind a camera and capture music in the making. Check out akgphotos.com for more.

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