Growing up in the ‘90s allowed an entire generation a listening experience like no other. Of course, the obvious mega-hits still proudly played by radio will always have listeners–but what about the forgotten gems that died with the decade?
In no particular order, the songs listed below spark nostalgia for times when MTV still played music and your Walkman was the only thing providing your playlists.
In addition to having one of the coziest band names ever, this Swedish quintet has been providing power pop to the masses since the early ‘90s. This undeniable hit broke in 1996 and gained immense attention. Featured in two box-office hits-William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet and Cruel Intentions, this little love song will continue to be heard.
Tal Bachman–“She’s So High”
Another ‘90s song sensation, “She’s So High” rings more bells than the Canadian singer-songwriter who wrote the tune. Tal Bachman originally scored a deal with Columbia Records after they heard an impressive demo. It wasn’t long before “She’s So High” reached #1 on charts in the U.S. and Canada. A staple song of the late ‘90s, the catchy chorus demands immediate replays.
This ‘90s song about drinking the night away is jam-packed with horns and fun. It’s doubtful that anyone forgot a band with a name like Chumbawumba. If the title ‘Tubthumping’ doesn’t sound familiar think: “I get knocked down, but I get up again…” or “Pissing the night away, pissing the night away.” Yeah…thought so.
Filter–“Take A Picture”
Formed in 1993, the Cleveland-based band Filter remain active today. Out of 5 studio albums, the 1999 hit stands apart from the band’s heavier material. The mellow ballad’s sweeping intro establishes a great ‘90s ambience followed by strange opening lines. “Awake on my airplane, awake on my airplane, my skin is bare, my skin is theirs…” Listen to this sometimes forgotten gem, you may feel like you’re back in fifth grade.
The Spice Girls–“Say You’ll Be There”
Guilty pleasure or not, one can only list the forgotten hits of the ‘90s for so long without mentioning this spicy all-girl super group. The Spice Girls are most famous for their punchy hit “Wannabe” and, of course, “Spice Up Your Life.” But, “Say You’ll Be There”–a more ballad-like song might be one of the girls’ best. It accompanies a great, fun and cheesy video that screams ‘90s glitter and it’s hard not to sing along.
The New Radicals-“Mother, We Just Can’t Get Enough”
The song “You Get What You Give” ravaged radios in the late ‘90s, and still gets played today. The California band and its name, actually styled–Иew Radicals–remain well known. But somehow, the huge pop song “Mother, We Just Can’t Get Enough” slipped away with the decade. Find it, remember it, you won’t get enough.
A true one-hit-wonder caused this San Francisco band of brunettes to top charts in the early ‘90s. The moody, layered song was a sure product of its time. Vocalist, Linda Perry dominates “What’s Up” with strong, deep vocals.
The Flys-“Got You (Where I Want You)”
It’s 1998, Dawson’s Creek is the current TV craze, and Katie Holmes is a blooming actress about to star in a music video. Enter the post-grunge, Hollywood-based band, The Flys and their song “Got You” (Where I Want You); it’s nineties mayhem. But the buzz surrounding the band’s video just wasn’t enough. After this song hit the airwaves it was forgotten way too soon and deserves more listens.
The band and song title may be unrecognizable to some but the song is anything but. The English-alternative band, Blur put out “Song 2” in 1997 and received instant success. The song’s well-known intro of drums coupled with guitar followed by a high-pitched “woo-hoo”, remains featured all over today. It’s the band name that seems hidden in the U.S. while in Europe, Blur stood as a well respected art/rock band grouped with wonders like Oasis and The Verve. Front man Damon Albarn went on to found another English success band, Gorillaz.
Stroke9–“Little Black Backpack”
A one-hit-wonder from the late ‘90s, this band is sure to resurface your initial confusion of, “What the hell is this song even about?” Stroke 9 stood as one of the first ‘90s Number Bands, and quickly broke to #6 on Billboard charts. “Little Black Backpack” sounds unidentifiable until the chorus that will send you straight back to your party days of 1999. With lyric lines like “Don’t wanna tango with you, I’d rather tango with him. I think I’m gonna bash his head in,” expect your group of friends at the bar to the break into a classic declaration of, “I totally remember this song!”