Monday, November 14, 2005

Forget Pomp and Circumstance

Every few years, a band comes out with a song that by the very nature of its lyrics, becomes an instant yearbook quote favorite, and shows up in all those graduation-themed Kodak and Folger's ads.

A few years ago, it was Green Day's "Time of Your Life," for wistful grad-ready lyrics such as "So take the photographs and still frames in your mind /Hang it on a shelf, in good health and good time."

I think in my own '80s era, it was "Don't You Forget About Me," by Simple Minds and featured in "The Breakfast Club. ("Slow change may pull us apart, when the light gets into your heart, baby.")

I think the latest nomination has to go to Nickelback's "Photograph," though, with lines like "Every memory of looking out the back door / I had the photo album spread out on my bedroom floor /It's hard to say it, time to say it /Goodbye, goodbye..."

25 comments:

Lauren T. said...

I hate the song 'Photograph' so much. There's hardly any intro, so no one has time to change the station before hearing the Nickleback guy singing like he's sitting on the toilet. [groaning] "Luuuuk at this FO-ta-graph!"

No, thank you.

ChickenFried said...

The year I graduated from college it was that Eagle Eye Cherry song, "Save Tonight." ("Save tonight/and fight the break of dawn/Come tomorrow/Tomorrow, I'll be gone...") No one wanted to admit it, but everyone secretly got a tiny bit choked up when it would come on the radio...

briank said...

In my day it was Styx's "Come Sail Away".

terri said...

I hate "Photograph" too, and everything else Nickleback has ever done. I'm glad I'm not graduating this year.

I graduated the year of "Time Of Your Life" and that song about sunscreen.

Anonymous said...

Ours was 10,000 Maniacs' "These are the Days." Good times.

Susan Gleason said...

Our college used Simon and Garfunkel's "Old Friends".

"Preserve your memories,
They're all that's left you." (waah!)

Anonymous said...

I'm of the "Time of Your Life" camp. We had a vote in our high school, and the sunscreen song was a pretty close second, so they ended up playing both songs. It was very weird, because we had a fairytale themed graduation, and in the midst of all these fairytale-type songs, they all of a sudden bust out the Green Day. It was quite awesome.

Sharon.

RedSoxGirl said...

Nickelback is one of my favorite bands and this song is fantastic. I'm in the middle of planning my 11 year high school reunion (yeah - we missed our 10th) and this song fits so well.

Back when I graduated, our class song was End of the Road by Boyz II Men....

Although we've come to the End Of The Road
Still I can't let you go
It's unnatural, you belong to me, I belong to you
Come to the End of the Road
Still I can't let you go
It's unnatural, you belong to me, I belong to you

Anonymous said...

What was actually kind of sweet was that they even used "Time Of Your Life" in a montage during a clip show that was the second-to-last Seinfeld episode.

Kim

Anonymous said...

Oooh. I still can't hear that Simple Minds song without drifting into a high school memory-filled trance. And now it's stuck in my head, dammit!

Taos Trip said...

Our graduating class chose "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey. At the time it seemed relevant. In hindsight, what did a bunch of kids from SE Texas know about a city boy, born and raised in South Detroit? Maybe some situations are universal therefore cross cultural lines???

I'm thinking way too hard about this.

Kim said...

Heh. Chiming in with a little REM, "It's the End of the World as We Know It."

kathryn said...

In 1992, we sang "One Moment in Time" by Ms. Whitney Houston, at graduation, and also "Can You Fell A Brand New Day" from "The Wiz" I also remember a lot of crying to the song "Landslide" by Fleetwood Mac.

A few years ago, there was a song by someone named Vitamin C, I believe, that was such a patronizing, cheap ploy for boosted record sales due to graduation. I think it was even called "Graduation Day". It grossed me out. And last but not least- in the 80s, I remember everyone having "The Wind Beneath My Wings." What is the song about sunscreen?

Anonymous said...

Er...people do know that "Time of Your Life" is a "f you, I'm glad you're gone, you horrible ex-girlfriend" song, right? It's as causticaly sarcastic as you can get.

Anonymous said...

I'm of the Simple Minds era. My sister, who graduated in 1986, had that "I believe the children are our future" song by Whitney Houston (sang a capella at graduation by a girl, who although probably a decent singer with music, was horribly off key).

inanecrap said...

Word on "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)." It's really quite a punk song when you really listen to it.

I graduated in 1995, but my class went with Alphaville's "Forever Young" for a class song. The song ended up in a Saturn commercial a year or two ago, but it's been a graduation standard up on Long Island for quite a few years.

Blair said...

I can't believe no one's mentioned OMD's "If You Leave."

Meredith said...

My class voted in either (depending on whom you ask) "Loser" by Beck or "Today is the Greatest Day" by the Smashing Pumpkins. The administration wouldn't let us have either, and got a guy from my class to write a song. While that was undoubtedly cool for him, I don't have a song on the radio to point at as my graduation song.
My mom went to the same high school, and her class voted "We've Got to Get Out of This Place/If It's the Last Thing We Ever Do" as their song, but got stuck with "We've Only Just Begun" by the Carpenters instead.

Anonymous said...

Ours was "Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday," by, crap, some boy band that I'd never heard of and didn't vote for. Our other choices? "Smells like Teen Spirit" and "Dream On." The eight of us that voted for Nirvana (rural WV high school) were disgusted but not surprised.

Anonymous said...

I never graduated from high school (long story) so I don't have a graduation song. Which I guess is why I get kind of weepy when I see the Nickelback video. Okay, they filmed it in their hometown, which is only about an hour from my hometown. Bottom line - except for me being a girl, the whole damn video comes pretty close to perfectly describing my high school experience, right down to the geography. I'm a sucker, I know it.

Maggie said...

Ours was "Closer to Fine" by the Indigo Girls, mainly because the seniors in the school chorus got to pick and that's what we wanted.

"I spent four years prostrate to the higher mind/Got my paper and I was free" was pretty much why we picked it. That was in a tiny private Florida school in '94.

Anonymous said...

My little cousin graduated a few years ago, and the graduates sang a VITAMIN C SONG!! For Pete's sake, can it get any worse?

Anonymous said...

They played that HORRID Vitamin C song for my 8th grade graduation. I skipped out of prom early, so I don't know what they played, but I would bet that it was that song again, since the annoying girls in my class loved it.

Closer to Fine would've been awesome.


Kate

Anonymous said...

Time by Chantal Kreviazuk. I'm not sure this song is yearbook quote-able, but they used it on Laguna Beach (Shut up! Hee.) during the graduation scene. It made me kind of sentimental, even though these were the LB kids.

Anonymous said...

We had a Motley Crue tune for our grad song, Time for Change. (Now it's time for change. Nothing stays the same. Now it's time for change.)

Can someone please write that Nickelback singer dude and tell him to please clear his throat before he decides to sing next time because his phlemy voice grosses me out. The song picture kinda makes me teary though, simply because I need to let go of my past...