My teenage soundtrack

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Recently I thought I’d give myself a bit of a laugh by digging out my diaries from the age of 14-17 to read. But it was a confusing mixture of cringing fondness I felt for this teenage girl, boy obsessed, always looking to the next birthday or Halloween party, the next outfit, wanting nothing more, really, than to be Natalie Imbruglia when I grew up (Neighbours, Left of the Middle, White Lillies Island — that woman dominated my teens).

Anyway, music was a huge part of those pages – every few ramblings I’d drop in three or four songs I was listening to at that moment, usually because they reminded me of [insert name of average-looking teenage boy] and that magical moment he [accidentally caught my eye in Biology/brushed past me at the cinema/sent me a baffling range  of emojis on MSN messenger].

Gradually I became more interested in the soundtrack than the crushes (too fickle), a mixture of early-Noughties R&B and heart-wrenching, poppy Indie. So I started adding to a Spotify playlist every time the 14-year-old me name-dropped a tune. I’ve been listening to it all week and it has put me in such a kickass mood.

I realised a few things: one, that Can’t Get it Back by Mis-Teeq is an entirely underrated CLASSIC, that Dashboard Confessional is still a great band to blast through your headphones after a long day and that, of those little scenarios you play in your head while walking along listening to music (your own music video, Chicago-style dream sequence, a fleeting revenge fantasy – yes you, don’t pretend you’re above that), there’s really nothing that beats mentally dancing around your 15-year-old bedroom.

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