What the Kids Are Listening to These Days

Lil Jon / Courtesy of wantickets.com
Lil Jon / Courtesy of wantickets.com

For this college student, finals are right around the corner and the coming weekend means copious amounts of notecards and coffee are about to be consumed, and apologies to our bodies (sorry we didn’t get enough sleep, sorry we’re so stressed out!) will be doled out. This weekend signals the end of parties this semester and the end of dancing to party favorites. I’ve compiled a playlist for study breaks to remind ourselves that we used to have fun! We used to dance! They can take our weekend, but they can’t take our spirit!

“Shabba” by A$AP Ferg feat. A$AP Rocky. The first time I ever heard this song, I was so into it but couldn’t pick out a single lyric to Google search (the chorus is literally Sh-Shabba Ranks, Sh-Sh-Shabba Ranks) so I had to very slyly Shazam it in a corner. This has been one of the best received songs at my college for whatever reason, whether it’s because it pays tribute to Jamaican dancehall artist Shabba Ranks by referencing his eight gold rings, four gold chains, and one gold tooth, or that both A$AP Ferg and A$AP Rocky have incredibly well-delivered verses. Either way, whenever we hear that intro, everyone is excited.

“No Flex Zone” by Rae Sremmurd, Nicki Minaj, Pusha T. A song that’s been blowing up on Atlanta radio stations, I was very excited when it caught on at school as well. I remember telling my roommate about it at the beginning of the year- well, not really telling, just kind of shouting “NO FLEX….. ZONE!” at her over and over until she finally demanded an explanation. Nicki Minaj, who seems to be everywhere this year, puts her own spin on the original by hip-hop group Rae Sremmurd and, following suit, informs us that she’s still a force to be reckoned with (“B***h I been hot since flip phones / Running this game for five years / Guess that’s why my feet hurt). The song has such a cool beat and listeners are still wondering just what a no flex zone is.

“Toca Toca” by Fly Project. One of my very good friends found this jewel when he went to Morocco for spring break last year and I don’t think there’s a song that get more applause or cheers. As a music nerd, I’m tempted to say that the best part of it is the placement of the intervals between the notes or how attractive the percussive, synth beats are, but honestly, the lyrics are just so silly that you can’t help but chime in (Oh, you said no no no / I said no no no / You say take me home / I said Dom Perignon). I’ll let the song speak for itself.

“2 On” by Tinashé feat. Schoolboy Q. The bass-heavy aspect of “2 On” is what does it for me. Considering when we go out, it’s usually a lot of people crowded into a couple large dorm rooms, this song transports us to a different place. It’s sort of ironic that it’s played in someone’s room because it just seems like such a club-specific song so it’s fun to adopt that mentality. Personally, when Schoolboy Q’s verse comes on, I find an opportune moment to go get some water or really just leave the room because it’s pretty aggressive and that’s not how I like to get down.

“212” by Azalea Banks feat. Lazy Jay. Okay, okay, I know I just said I’m not into overly-aggressive things but… This song is just good to pass up. Since its release in 2011, that syncopated beat has been an instant indicator that it’s time to channel all the energy we have left into dancing (read: jumping way too enthusiastically) and screaming these gems of lyrics.

“Get Low” by Lil Jon feat. Ying Yang Twins. Because, really. How could we not?

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