1. "Four-Fifty-One" by Five Iron Frenzy
The first time I heard this late 90s Christian ska band was the Cornerstone music Festival in the summer of '99 (summer between my freshman and sophomore years of high school). Cornerstone is a huge music festival that takes place every year in Bushnell, IL with mostly Christian bands or bands that are on Christian founded record labels (ie: Tooth & Nail, Solidstate, etc). At the time I went, I was huge fan of ska music - I was that girl "skanking" down front with everyone else at the ska shows and I had the whole "skater punk chick" look going on too. These guys really did put on an AWESOME show though and turns out they were recording their live album that night as well (the show was at midnight) and you could write down your name at the merch table to have it included in the liner notes (yep, mine is in there!). I bought one of their CDs that weekend and then got the Live album when it came out a few months later (I *had* to - my name was in it, afterall!). While they don't shy away from the fact they're Christians at their live shows, they majority of their songs are just good, clean innocent fun - not every song of theirs is all praise God, etc - one is about the singer's longing for a blue comb he had as a kid that his sister tossed out the car window, another is about the tv show Different Strokes, another about a character called Combat Chuck... you get the idea. In the name of all things ska, check out this band if you like ska and haven't heard of them!
2. "American Idiot" by Green Day
Green Day popped up on here a few weeks ago, so I won't say too much, however I like a handful of their songs but I'm not too thrilled how they've gone all political this last decade - I listen to music to fill the silence and take my mind off things, not to have a political agenda shoved down my ears.
3. "Bleeders" by The Wallflowers
Ah Jakob Dylan, the musical son of legend Bob Dylan, with your piercing baby blue eyes... he was another musician I definitely had a crush on in 8th grade during the late 90s! I didn't run out and buy this album right away though as I wasn't really a fan of their first single "6th Ave Heartache," but that all changed when they released the next single, "One Headlight" which also became a hit. I bought the album and then saw them live at my hometown's annual Labor Day Weekend festival, On the Waterfront (and after the show that year, my friend and I ran across the festival to catch the end of the Sevendust/Kittie/PM5K/Staind show - I swear, I will only ever see Sevendust live, one song at a time!). Honestly, this was a pretty good one, and even though I don't recall this song, "Bleeders," being a single, it was still another really good song on the album.
4. "Just Like a Pill" by Pink
When Pink first busted out onto the music in my early high school days, I wasn't much of a fan - her single "There You Go" was catchy with R&B undertones but it just wasn't my type of music. Then apparently after her debut she decided to record what she wanted and released a more pop-rock album. While I liked it better than her debut, it wouldn't say it's my favorites. I did like how she was the "anti-popstar" and seemed to be a real person and not fake. Her 2nd album had a few good, more serious and edgy songs on it, this being one of them. The video was also pretty interesting and artsy too, if I recall. While not quite my style, I do tend to find myself liking some of Pink's songs from to time and after seeing her Behind the Music special, I can definitely respect her as an artist/musician.
5. "Duality" by Slipknot
I've never been a huge Slipknot fan, but they're one of those bands that sometimes has singles you kinda like so you get just the singles you like. This is one of them. I was first introduced to this band by the guy I dated in high school, as he was into rock and metal and Slipknot was kind of metal... so yeah... "Wait and Bleed" was their big single when I was in high school. I didn't mind that song. And here we are now.