Today's letter is J. Off we go.
You know that he had to start off this letter. You just know. For good measure, we'll throw in the rest of the brothers because the Jackson 5 was awesome too. He was the King of Pop and quite possibly the strangest man to ever achieve that level of fame. A product of a messed up childhood, his adulthood wasn't any less messed up, and his death will be a subject of controversy for years to come. What remains now is his music, his gift to the world. He went places no one else would. The man was brought to this world to do this.
There will always be a place in my heart for Montell Jordan. There just will be. Back in 1995 when I was living in the dorms in college, his song was the one. THE one. He was singing about south central, I was living there. Literally the theme song of my college party days.
I been caught stealing. Once. When I was five.
True story. I stole a piece of candy from the store when I was five and I've felt guilty about it my whole life. So you know that when this song came out, I identified.
If you loved alternative music in the 90's, you loved them. In many ways, they brought the genre to the forefront and helped make it what it became. If you went to Lollapalooza, you saw them. If you've ever laughed to yourself at a woman buying a pineapple while wearing a dress, you loved them.
Like a sir. Literally.
There is simply no way to love music and not adore this man. He's been around forever, his music is timeless and perfect. He can rock sequins and feathers like no one else can.
There is too much to choose from, so here. Just one randomly chosen song of his masterful collection.
A true musical treasure, her voice was easily one of the most recognizable. She spanned different genres and had a career so long that other artists could only dream of matching it.
Yet another member of the 27 Club, she was a kickass chick in a rock world dominated by men. Her raspy voice had a rawness to it that fit the time, a ragged anger to it that just made sense. Gone way too soon.
Though he started out as just another rapper in a market flooded with them, he turned it into a long and wildly successful career, taking on multiple responsibilities these days, not the least of which is being Mr. Beyonce.
It's pretty hard to find many artists these days in hip hip and rap that his golden hand hasn't touched.
I'm still pretty partial to his songs from back in the day before all that. Don't test my patience, sweetie I'm high maintenance.
Another of the musical greats, there really isn't much I can say about him that everyone doesn't already know. The upside to having long, wildly successful careers is that someone else has already said it all before me.
That, and I know all the lyrics to this song. Do you?
The baby girl of the Jackson family, she was never really a huge part of the musical group everyone else was in, but she sure found her way to success on her own. I've been fan of hers forever, and can tell you she puts on one hell of a live show if you ever get the chance. Holy hotness. Watch this, then go take a cold shower.
The music of junior high dances and bromances. They are the anthem arena band. Cheesy and ridiculous, you just can't help but turn up any of their songs when they come on the radio and sing along. Tears optional. And no, totally, no one saw that. You're good.
Did we just have a Journey moment? I think we did.
She rocks hard.
Breathy, sexy harmonies. That is all. This music is made for one reason. Yep, it's that one.
One of the most awarded vocalists of this generation, there is a subtle richness to her voice that just draws you in and keeps you there. Her music is an escape for me.
The quiet and reserved girl from Alaska, she started playing guitar and writing songs one day. A distinct voice, a little bit of folk, a little bit of country, a little bit of rock, she is amazing. No fancy editing needed here. My favorite song of hers is also her most controversial. Because that's how I roll.