We Are Not Cool: UPROXX Music’s Most Embarrassing Admissions

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It’s hard to separate music from the concept of “cool.” Not only does liking music in general help define you as cool, but there’s a vague, subjective hierarchy within music fans that defines your coolness, depending on what you listen to. Just imagine an illuminati of music snobs huddled together in a Masonic lair, surrounded by flame-lit torches and old 45s, deconstructing why Lorde should be cool while Tove Lo isn’t. It’s to the point where people buy — and brag about owning! — music they don’t even like just because they think it helps make them cooler.

We think that’s kind of ridiculous. The only factor that should decide what music is in your collection is whether or not you actually enjoy that music.

To us at UPROXX Music, there is no such thing as a “guilty pleasure” because we don’t feel guilty about our musical history. To prove it, we’ve let our guard down and decided to share our most embarrassing admissions with you. Whether it’s a deeply uncool album or artist we love or a particularly regretful moment, we’re letting the skeletons out of our musical closet.

And you can, too. Comment below with your own embarrassing admissions, and we’ll highlight the best entries in the near future. It’s okay. This is a safe space.

(Note: You won’t be able to listen to any of the Spotify widgets below unless you’re already a subscriber. Which you should do! Spotify is awesome.)

Tom Mantzouranis, Managing Editor (Music & Culture)

As an angsty suburban teenager oft ignored by girls in the late ’90s, I naturally turned to emo music. The CD case in my first car sported the likes of Jimmy Eat World, The Get Up Kids, American Football, Promise Ring, etc. and, of course, everyone’s favorite sad-sack troubadour Dashboard Confessional. Man, did I like Dashboard Confessional. Like, drive-around-alone-at-night-screaming-the-lyrics type of like. So when it was time to declare my love for a particular girl, and I was 17, I did what any good emo kid does: I bypassed direct communication and wrote a letter comprised solely of Dashboard Confessional lyrics, giving it to a mutual friend to deliver while I cowered at home waiting for a response. That response? It never came. She went to senior prom with someone else. “The Sharp Hint of New Tears,” indeed.

Dan Seitz, Senior Contributor

“Cotton-Eye Joe” is, and remains, the song I listen to the most on Google Music. Checking my iTunes, Amazon and Google plays, I’m at something like 568 recorded listens. That’s more than the number of times I’ve listened to my favorite album, Abattoir Blues, all the way through.

… Come to think of it, that probably explains why I get nothing but EDM recommendations on Pandora.

Andrew Husband, Contributing Writer/Editor

Annie Lennox’s “Walking on Broken Glass” is hands-down the best song to play on repeat. I keep a one-song playlist set to loop on Spotify. Even so, I still have the Diva CD my mom bought me for my birthday in 1992. (My dad questions this purchase to this day.) BONUS: Hugh Laurie is in the music video in character as Prince George from Blackadder the Third. “Lucky, lucky us!”

Martin Rickman, Senior Writer (Sports)

I made an Ace of Base station on Pandora a few years ago, and it’s still the first station that comes up whenever I log in. So, without fail, there’s usually “Never Going To Say I’m Sorry” or “Don’t Turn Around” or some sort of extended dance remix of “All That She Wants” that starts blasting. On more than one occasion, my phone has gone rogue on me and opened Pandora without me hitting the button. Let’s just say not everyone is as amused by hearing Ace of Base in a client meeting as I am.

Vince Mancini, Editor (FilmDrunk)

I still own ska albums, so I have a lot of embarrassing musical tastes. But I think the musical choice I have to defend the most is the Spin Doctors, also known as the Smash Mouth of the early ’90s. As a guy in A.V. Club’s HateSong series put it when writing about “Two Princes,” “It’s ‘white people without problems’ music. I just envision hippies in a VW driving around San Francisco like, ‘Weee!'”