Music: An Article


At Ghosts of the Stratosphere, we may have started as a comic book specific podcast, but we have branched out in many different directions on our site. We frequently discuss anime, Disney, wrestling, movies old and new, and toys. We have even been known to discuss music on occasion.

I have not tended to write any of those articles because… honestly? I’m not much of a music guy. It’s not that I don’t like music or have no use for it; it’s just that I view music as a supplemental material, not a fundamental medium. Music is for driving and exercising, and that’s pretty much it. When it comes to all the forms of entertainment in the world, I would rather do any of them than… just sit around and listen to music. Read a book or listen to music? Read a book! Watch a movie or listen to music? Watch a movie! Play a video game or… you get it, right?

Admittedly, I have pretty garbage taste in music! But that’s because, since I don’t care enough about music on my own, I’m pretty much a musical chameleon; I just listen mostly to what the people around me have listened to. My wife listens mostly to rap and pop music, so nowadays I listen to that. In college, my closest friends listened to emo and pop-punk, so I have a lot of that on my Spotify list. In my 20’s, I dated a girl who liked K-pop and J-pop, so I downloaded those in that era. Overall, I have absorbed just a bunch of shitty musical preferences in my years. And that’s fine because, like I said: driving and exercising exclusively.

I have a playlist on Spotify that is completely non-discriminatory. As I don’t really care much about music, it’s just one playlist of any song I might ever want to listen to. I don’t really have a list for this “mood” or that “event”. It’s just… Rob’s Playlist (I do, actually, have a second playlist of just WWE entrance music and a third for songs that are best for treadmilling, but that is just the Rob’s Playlist pared down of anything I’d skip through while exercising because it is slow). So what I thought I’d do with you is play a game: I’m going to randomize my Spotify list, play the first ten songs that show up, and write down what they “mean” to me or why they are on that list.

So come with me as we explore my shit-ass taste in music, one song at a time!

SONG #1 – Tenacious D: “Beelzeboss (The Final Showdown)”

Haha, okay, I kind of love this song.

Back in the days of iPods that kept track of stuff like this, this song was one of my 3 or 4 most listened-to tracks. Tenacious D & The Pick of Destiny is a terribly underrated fun movie, and this is the climactic scene which is both fun and a great tune. Tenacious D and Dave Grohl just rocking out and making a live action version of the scene the single “Tribute” told us about is what I always needed in my life. The rest of the music from the film ranges from pretty darn good to middling, but this is a masterpiece.

I have always wanted to karaoke this, but I just never have. You need a third person for Kyle’s part of the D’s counter song. That’s hard to come by!

SONG #2 – PSY: “Gangnam Style”


The only problem I have with this song is that when it comes up on Spotify, I don’t get to watch the music video. It’s so goofy.

When this song hit, I already had a history of enjoying Kpop under my belt, so this song wasn’t AS unusual for me to listen to as it may have been for many other Top 40 fans. That said, it’s crazy how fast this song blew up and then faded away. I still dig it, though. And want to learn how to do the shaky-legs dance he does with his hands on his hips.

What can’t be argued is that, as far as explosive foreign language hits go, this was WAY better than friggin’ Despacito.

SONG #3 – P!nk: “Stupid Girls”

This is pretty much influenced by my wife, as she is a big fan of P!nk. To be fair, she is a pretty good all-around artist, and she has some songs I genuinely really dig.

This is kind of a middle-of-the-road P!nk song by me. It’s energetic and catchy, but not something I really sing along to or anything.

Last year, I tried to get my wife tickets to see P!nk in concert, and she essentially told me we are too old to go to big concerts. The world isn’t aimed at us anymore, and we have to be in bed soon, people! Concerts in big venues are full of scary young folks who don’t say dorky old people things like “folks”.

Also: as much as I enjoy her, “P!nk” is a really awful name to keep typing.

SONG #4 – Huey Lewis & The News: “The Power of Love”

So within the last year or so, I really went on a “I DON’T HAVE ENOUGH 80’S SONGS ON MY LIST” kick, and this was one of the tunes I added in my spree of looking up 80’s charting hits. I do actually listen to this with some regularity; it’s a good car singin’ song.

The 80’s was the best decade for music. Don’t @ me. Everything was so synthesized and fun and catchy.

SONG #5 – MxPx: “Set The Record Straight”

Oh, here we are with the start of my awful pop-punk stuff my list is full of. I was wondering where it was hiding.

MxPx is such a frantic, fast-paced three-piece band that just has that nasally, high-pitched voice and noisy music. They kind of almost caught on for a hot second around 2002 or so, but it was fleeting. You may not know them, and there’s no reason you should.

This song… is a LOT of fast guitars and drums. But it’s probably one of my top 5 MxPx songs, and my favorite from this album, so… there’s that?

SONG #6 – The Offspring: “Why Don’t You Get A Job?”

“Americana” was such a weird album! The Offspring just abandoned the grittier, fast punk music of “Smash” and basically went all in on becoming a bigger commercial success. Which I respect. But MAN did this album sound different from what I was used to just a few years removed.

This song is… fine. It’s dopey and pointless, BUT! It is also gender equal and calls out both sexes for a propensity to mooch off their lover. So that’s pretty progressive, I think.

But it also uses the B-word, which is… less so.

SONG #7 – Weird Al Yankovic: “Fat”

Ain’t nobody ever gonna make me feel bad for loving Weird Al. And his videos? Man, what a treasure.

I love that he kept making food-related parodies of Michael Jackson songs in the 80’s. And that he basically invented, like, 40% of what would be YouTube content 20+ years before YouTube existed. And that he is STILL GOING STRONG and doing his thing and touring.

Weird Al is one of the lowest-key geek and pop culture icons we have, and I worry he isn’t appreciated enough. Fat is one of at least two songs where when I hear the “real” version, I just sing Al’s instead. We may get to the other eventually…

SONG #8 – Tenacious D: “Kielbasa”

I say “So far, off to a bad start… better, closer, warmer… and that’s it” ALL THE TIME, and this is where I got it from.

This is the first track from the first Tenacious D album, and it’s a pretty fantastic kick-off song, even if the lyrics are… what they are. But really, most of their songs are either about sex or how great they are as a band, so they really set the tone right off the bat.

SONG #9 – Ke$ha: “TiK ToK”

I seriously won’t hear a single bad word about the greatest musical artist of our generation, so don’t even start with me. Ke$ha is the best.

Seriously, she’s like a MENSA level genius who was apparently a studious nerd in college, and then just created this whole absurd party girl persona to make a bajillion dollars and fun-ass music.

TiK ToK was a song that, when it came out, I HATED. I thought it was ridiculous and moronic as hell, but I was MISSING THE POINT. It’s supposed to be! It’s Marketing 101, and she always knew what she was doing.

Except maybe when her producer or whatever was abusing her.

But whatever. Ke$ha is better than whoever our favorite pop star is.

Also, I never hear someone start a phrase “Woke up in the morning…” and not interrupt them, “…feeling like P. Diddy?”

SONG #10 – Dashboard Confessional: “The Good Fight”

DBC has aged with me about as poorly as any band I ever dug, with the exception of a few good songs that still somewhat hold up. It’s the kind of music that you are meant to grow out of, whether the artist knows that or not. It’s a snapshot of your life when break-ups were an eternal struggle that you were NEVER getting past, and melodrama and angst ruled your soul.

This isn’t even one of his/their better songs. It’s just filler on an album I enjoyed. Nothing of note here.

Oh my god, I am such a genius! This is going to be an article theme I can come back to over and over. I’ve got 50-60 articles’ worth of songs!

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this quick peak into the music I listen to and why I don’t ever talk about the music I listen to.

Leave a comment about your favorite thing about Ke$ha!

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