’90s playlist #1

A couple of months ago I made myself a ~grrrrrl power~ ’90s playlist, inspired by the Captain Marvel soundtrack:

And it started out pretty easily — late night awake in bed looking up rando favorites on Spotify, and in 15 minutes I had 25 songs or so. I had given myself some rules — no covers, no repeating artists, only female vocalists allowed [even if the rest of the band were all dudes, because nothing is more nineties than that, hi No Doubt Cardigans Sixpence None the Richer Catatonia Deee-Lite etc].

And then I started googling articles about music in the ’90s, and added some extra songs from artists I had missed in the first round [and realized fairly quickly that even though this was Lilith Fair times, almost all of the Best Of and Top # ’90s lists out there were compiled my men who only listen to men music].

The CardigansThe Cardigans

But because I’m me, the next day it turned into A PROJECT. And I started thinking about how to transition from one song to another, because it had to make sense [in my head; nobody else cares].

I ended up realizing I needed MORE songs — songs that would fit between two songs that didn’t. And making songs transition well is a puzzle — I’ve read enough artists talking about how songs were left out of albums because they didn’t fit anywhere, or how they started with a tracklist and then it changed because the transitions weren’t making sense. It’s a thing for artists, but in my head it’s also a thing for playlists.

[And then everyone listens to them on shuffle anyway so it’s all for naught. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ]

Luscious JacksonLuscious Jackson

I don’t know how to explain why a song fits after another. It takes listening to songs ending and others starting, over and over until it clicks. But I did do a little dance when I figured out the way to go from punk rock noisy bands to dance pop hip hop was Björk – Moloko – Madonna. [And it had to be Madonna’s Human Nature even though there are eleventy billion Madonna songs from the ’90s, because nothing else fit.] Or how I transitioned from indie-weird to Lilith Fair was a dash of Brit pop brought by Sixpence None the Richer and a Spice Girl solo act. It fit.

And so I ended up with 50 songs. It’s a mix of biggest hits and my own favorite songs. I still fret about No Doubt. Why didn’t I go with Just a Girl? I don’t know. But I had to use Sarah McLachlan’s Elsewhere because while it’s not her biggest hit, it’s my favorite of all her songs ever.


The fun for me [fun for me, fun for me] part of it all was after weeks of listening to this playlist, it’s like it opened up the vault in my brain were girly songs from the ’90s lived, and I started remembering more songs from that time that I had long forgotten. Which is why I made a second playlist a couple of weeks ago. [I’ll post about that one another time.]

Oh, and I cheated and there are two songs from 2001. Don’t tell anyone.