Sometimes when you’re awkward, it feels like no one in the world understands you quite so well as… well, millionaire rock stars, basically. Which is actually quite strange, now I come to think of it, and not even remotely the point I was trying to make here, so let me just start again here, shall I?
So, you know that moment when a song comes on the radio, say, and, all of a sudden, you realise that song is 100% about YOU: almost as if the person singing it has a window into your head, and is singing your thoughts… only maybe a bit less creepy than I made that sound? Here are 9 songs that do that for me: my Anthems for the Awkward, if you will…
Stay (I Missed You) – Lisa Loeb
“So I, I turn the radio on, I turn the radio up, and this woman was singing my song…” In the 90s, that woman was Lisa Loeb, and she spoke for all of us:
And I thought what I felt was simple
And I thought that I don’t belong
And now that I am leaving
Now I know that I did something wrong
She also made cat-eye glasses cool for a while, and that was a pretty decent achievement too, really.
Creep – Radiohead
I mean, you can even publish a list of awkward songs if you don’t include Creep? Because I don’t think so.
But I’m a creep, I’m a weirdo.
What the hell am I doing here?
I don’t belong here.
How Soon Is Now? – The Smiths
If I’d bothered to rank these songs in order of importance/relevance (Which I didn’t, because the very thought of that makes me a bit anxious, really, How I would I choose? What if I change my mind later?), I’m pretty sure How Soon is Now would have been #1. Or maybe #2. Top 3, definitely. And I know Morrisey has been hellbent on offending pretty much everyone ever since, but what awkward girl could listen to these lyrics and NOT feel SEEN?
There’s a club if you’d like to go
You could meet somebody who really loves you
So you go and you stand on your own
And you leave on your own
And you go home and you cry
And you want to die
Round Here – Counting Crows
This would’ve been the other contender for the #1 spot, purely for this:
And she knows she’s more than just a little misunderstood
She has trouble acting normal when she’s nervous
What I want to know, though, is how DID Adam Duritz get hold of my diary?
Silent All These Years – Tori Amos
Excuse me, but can I be you for a while?
No, Tori, you can’t. Can I be YOU, though? Can I? Because I spent most of 1993 wishing that I could…
(Still a) Weirdo – KT Tunstall
I don’t know if KT Tunstall really IS still a weirdo, but I know I am, and that’s why this song speaks to me:
I don’t always get it right
I’d see it in a different kind of light
Pay my lip service, keep it eloquent
Optimistic but never quite elegant
Still a weirdo, still a weirdo
After all these years
Mr Jones – Counting Crows
Yes, the Crows get two spots on the list, because the Crows sing about things like this:
When everybody loves you, you can never be lonely
And, I mean, we’ve all thought it, right?
Mis-Shapes – Pulp
Mis-shapes, mistakes, misfits
Raised on a diet of broken biscuits, oh
We don’t look the same as you
And we don’t do the things you do
Buy we live ’round here too, oh really
People Like Us – Kelly Clarkson
Finally, for something a little more upbeat and actually anthemic, there’s this song:
Oh, people like us we’ve gotta stick together
Keep your head up, nothing lasts forever
Here’s to the damned to the lost and forgotten
It’s hard to get high when you’re living on the bottom
So, here’s to the misfits, and the shy girls and the awkward ones: and, if you’re one of them, tell me: what’s YOUR song?