The Taste of Music: The Jezabels
Each week for the next few weeks, we're asking a different music personality to craft us a playlist based around the theme of "pop" or "rock". A theme so good you could taste it. And that taste might taste something a lot like a Drumstick ice-cream. I mean, I just pulled that out of thin air, but just to give you one example we could think of.
Today's candidate is Hayley Mary (above, far left) of The Jezabels. One of the biggest Australian success stories of the last few years, The Jezabels have managed to lodge themselves as a live favourite both locally and abroad, trouble the Top 40, and win an ARIA for last year's album debut, Prisoner, while remaining an independent band.
"Naivety is often the thing we criticise about pop music. Abba, I would argue, wrote more seemingly naive pop songs than any other band in history. Their lyrics were so cliche, that only those to whom English was not a first language could have written them, let alone sung them with the sincerity and passion that Abba did. Hating Abba is like hating a child. Sure they're annoying sometimes, but they're beautiful and the always tell the truth."
E.L.O - 'Living Thing'
"It feels like we celebrate so much these days, and pop has always been a part of celebration. Yet, our celebration of nature has become less and less important. I guess it was the hippie movement that made a pop song like this possible. I don't usually have a lot of time for the hippie aesthetic on a superficial level, but I listen to this song and I remember that I fucking love the earth and that mother nature is crying."--
Simple Minds - 'Don't You Forget About Me'
"Like many people who write I am fascinated by the story. No particular story, just stories about our existence, our pain and happiness, our triumphs, Sometimes I am convinced that stories are really all there is. The sad, yet beautiful thing is, that we never get to see our own story. We hope that it will be a good one, that we'll come a across well in the end, wont be misunderstood, but ultimately, we hope not to be forgotten"--
Katy Perry - 'Teenage Dream'
"This is probably on a lot of peoples' pop lists. The idea of a fully grown woman admitting that she wants to be a teenager is very liberating to me. I often feel like music is similar to a teenage dream. For this reason, and also because the production and songwriting are supreme, I need to include this one. Also it looks like teenage-hood and childhood are going to be recurring themes in this list, so deal with it."
One Direction - 'What Makes You Beautiful'
"OK some pop is evil and is marketed directly towards teenage girls and so on and so forth. But also it could just be that, due to the lack of respect teenage girls have afforded throughout rock 'n' roll history, they don't have any "credibility" to lose and are, therefore, the the only ones who aren't afraid to experience extreme emotions...and listen earnestly to some pretty hectic shit. Well, this song makes me a teenage girl again. Every second is absolute perfection. I feel sick in the stomach when I hear it, like when you fall in love for the first time and can't eat. I cream my pants. If credibility means not liking this song, then I don't want it"
The Killers - 'When You Were Young'
"Alas, the ghost of youth is upon me again. I remember driving away from my childhood home to move up north with my parents, closing my eyes on what I would one day think of as the happiest time of my life; before I knew the fragility of 'forever', the pain of love and sex, and knowing that innocence is gone, but you still dream of a man, and one day he comes, but it is never as it seems and, "he doesn't look a thing like Jesus, but he talks like a gentleman, like you imagined, when you were young"...etc etc"--
Eminem - 'Lose Yourself'
"The beauty of popular music is the contradictions that can be captured in a song. That we can fall in love with someone we don't know and probably wouldn't like if we met them, because of their ability to articulate their weaknesses and their dreams. I will always have time for Eminem, because he helped me through the darkness. "
Cyndi Lauper - 'Money Changes Everything'"When a pop song actually touches on the 'real' shit in life, tells the simple truth and still manages to make you feel really good, well that is when it's doing what it should."
Queen - 'Bohemian Rhapsody'"Then, there are songs that surpass everything we thought the song could be; songs that take the world where the music industry never thought they would have followed. This only happens when true artists give themselves entirely to us, for better or worse. Queen have got to be one of the best pop bands ever to grace this earth."
The Righteous Brothers - 'Unchained Melody'
"A song like this, will never again be written, because we just don't think like this any more. A vocal take like this will never happen again."
The Jezabels have just released a live DVD of their June 2012 show at the Horden Pavilion in Sydney, available now.