This mixtape is called Brit Pop 1

Freshman year of college. 1997. I am taking Design 1 and hanging out with a friend of a friend who begins to extoll the virtues of Brit Pop. Now at this time even us dumb Americans knew who Oasis where but I’d never really explored further into whatever their genre may have been.

See during my high school years I was into “indie rock” and I fully felt like that was not only a viable genre title but that it also meant something. Oh, I also secretly consumed as much MTV as I possibly could while holding huge amounts of disdain for what was on there. Hence, no foray into Oasis… those corpo sellouts. I was an insular little snob (yes… even more than now).

I want to say that I got over myself during my freshman year but that makes it sound like I became way more open minded. Which while partially true the fact is that I still had (have?) lots of elitism to get over.

So why am I telling you this and why is my dorm room door covered in Spice Girls posters you ask? Well I think the best way of explaining it is that I really leaned into the fact that I knew (a lot) about top popular music and that I truly did love the gloss and sheen of bands that were on MTV. Everything didn’t have to originate from a 4 track tape recorder and output on a 7” record (spoiler… that’s a mix for another day). And while granted I still would have lumped my knowledge of Spice Girls and Hanson songs as “guilty pleasures” (a term which I think is complete bullshit) I was starting to lean into being ok with listening to bands that other people knew about, and god forbid let someone else turn me on to some new music.

So this is where my new friend in Design 1 lends me a few key Brit Pop albums and I’m off to the races. I start putting shit tons of gel into my hair and move my wardrobe more towards clean cut. The iMac is still a year away but I’m ready for everything to be unnecessarily translucent and sexy.

I now realize I never explained why my dorm room door looked the way it did. Tower Records in downtown Davis used to have this section where they’d pile their used or un-needed promotional materials. I used to regularly scavenge through these piles and grab whatever stickers, postcards and posters I could find. One day I stumbled on a stack of Spice Girls promotional posters and took all of them. The song “Wannabe” was a certified banger and what better way to solidify myself as a wacky artsy boi than to cover my door with said posters (I had a very easygoing roommate who was too busy playing Quake to notice).

So here’s a playlist of what you’d find on the other side of that door.

Sign on up!

Album / Compilation
Interview with Justine Frischmann.
Sleeper - Statuesque
It Girl (1996)
Super Furry Animals - Something For The Weekend
Fuzzy Logic (1996)
Echobelly - King Of The Kerb
On (1995)
Supergrass - Cheapskate
In It For The Money (1997)
Blur - Turn It Up
Modern Life Is Rubbish (1993)
Marion - Wait
This World And Body (1995)
Interview with Louise Wener.
My Life Story - King Of Kissingdom
The Golden Mile (1997)
Menswear - Being Brave
Nuisance (1995)
Oasis - Stay Young
The Masterplan (1998)
Catatonia - Road Rage
International Velvet (1998)
Shed Seven - Disco Down
Going For Gold (1999)
John Harris on Britpop and Politics.
Pulp - F.E.E.L.I.N.G.C.A.L.L.E.D.L.O.V.E
Different Class (1995)
Dodgy - Cold Tea
The Dodgy Album (1993)
Gene - London Can You Wait
Olympian (1995)
Suede - The Wild Ones
Dog Man Star (1994)