2021 in Earworms…?

On a whim, back in January, I started keeping track of songs that just popped into my head and wouldn’t go quietly. Now, 12 months later, I have 12 playlists of songs that I couldn’t quite get out of my head.

I tried not to post repeats of songs that were stuck in my head for multiple months but in general what you see is what we had, with maybe one or two exceptions for songs that weren’t on Spotify. Another arbitrary rule I set for myself was that the song couldn’t be something I heard somewhere or was specifically triggered by something, with the exception being if I kept hearing it in my head long after that moment. So for example, if I was watching a movie that had a song, it wouldn’t go on the playlist, but if I was still humming it days later, it would.

My plan was to end a monthly blog post with these but I couldn’t even get 12 blog posts out so, in reverse chronological order… here are the songs that were stuck in my head by month:

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2021 Media Log

Inspired by my friend Ben Hong (no longer media-logging), who got the idea from Jen Myers, I am continuing the practice of tracking my media consumption this year.

Past media logs: 2020 | 2019

Key: (B) = book | (F) = film | (T) = television series (completed season) | (L) = live performance (theater, music, comedy, etc.) | (A) = album (music) | (G) = video game | (C) = stand-up comedy special | [R] = reread/rewatch

Logged during the month I completed the unit. For example, I logged a full season of a TV show after watching the last episode of the season, whether I began the season that day or years earlier, I logged a game or album when I completed the entire thing, etc.

J A N U A R Y

  • Wonder Woman 1984 (F)
  • Ratatouille: The Musical (F?)
  • Ratatouille (F)[R]
  • King of Scars (B)
  • Promising Young Woman (F)
  • Luigi’s Mansion 3 (G)
  • Bridgerton (T)
  • Homegoing (B)
  • Bend It Like Beckham (F)[R]
  • Pride and Prejudice (2005) (F)[R]

F E B R U A R Y

  • Enter the Dragon (F)
  • The Mummy (F)[R]
  • The Mummy Returns (F)[R]
  • Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella (F)[R]
  • To All the Boys: Always and Forever (F)
  • Desperados (F)
  • History of Swear Words (T)
  • You’ve Got Mail (F)[R]
  • Coming to America (F)
  • Love Wedding Repeat (F)
  • Underworld (F)
  • Underworld: Evolution (F)

M A R C H

  • Je ne suis pas un homme facile (F)
  • WandaVision (T)
  • Moxie (F)
  • Two Weeks Notice (F)[R]
  • Raya and the Last Dragon (F)
  • Coming 2 America (F)
  • Blood of Elves (B)
  • Serendipity (F)[R]

A P R I L

  • Ace: What Asexuality Reveals About Desire, Society, and the Meaning of Sex (B)
  • While You Were Sleeping (F)[R]
  • Warrior S1 (T)
  • Warrior S2 (T)
  • Captain America: The First Avenger (F)[R]
  • The Big Boss (F)
  • The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (T)
  • Castle Crashers (G)
  • Shadow and Bone S1 (T)
  • Life in Color with David Attenborough (T)

M A Y

  • When Harry Met Sally (F)
  • Loathe at First Sight (B)
  • Mortal Kombat (2021) (F)
  • David Attenborough’s The Great Barrier Reef (T)
  • Kingdom Hearts 2 (G)
  • Stardust (F)
  • Song of Achilles (B)

J U N E

  • Breaking Boundaries: The Science of Our Planet (F)
  • Inside (F? C?)
  • Black Lady Sketch Show S2 (T)
  • In the Heights (F)
  • Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Eternal part 1 (F)
  • Exhalation (B)
  • Ted Lasso S1 (T)

J U L Y

  • Ted Lasso S1 (T)[R]
  • The Time of Contempt (B)
  • Shark Beach with Chris Hemsworth (F)
  • Black Widow (F)
  • Loki (T)
  • Space Jam: A New Legacy (F)
  • Never Have I Ever S1 (T)[R]
  • Rule of Wolves (B)
  • Never Have I Ever S2 (T)
  • Project Hail Mary (B)
  • Crying in H-Mart (B)
  • Red, White, and Royal Blue (B)

A U G U S T

  • Demon Slayer S1 (T)
  • The Year Earth Changed (F)
  • Transcendent Kingdom (B)
  • In the Moon for Love (F)
  • Solutions and Other Problems (B)
  • The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf (F)
  • The Ingenuity of the Househusband (T)
  • God of War (G)
  • Invincible S1 (T)

S E P T E M B E R

  • Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (F)
  • The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (F)
  • The Way of the Househusband S1 (T)
  • Over the Moon (F)[R]
  • Brittany Runs a Marathon (F)

O C T O B E R

  • Star Wars: Visions (T)
  • The Lightning Thief (B)
  • The Sea of Monsters (B)
  • The Titan’s Curse (B)
  • What If? S1 (T)
  • Ted Lasso S2 (T)
  • Star Wars: Visions (T)
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas (F)
  • Hocus Pocus (F)[R]
  • It Takes Two (G)
  • Casper (F)[R]

N O V E M B E R

  • Luca (F)
  • Coco (F)[R]
  • The Resistance (A)[R]
  • Eternals (F)
  • Closing Down the Pattern Department (A)[R]
  • Kingsman: The Secret Service (F)[R]
  • Kingsman: The Golden Circle (F)[R]
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse Original Soundtrack (A)[R]
  • Paddington (F)
  • Arcane S1 (T)
  • Love Hard (F)
  • A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (F)[R]
  • John Wick (F)

D E C E M B E R

  • John Wick: Chapter 2 (F)
  • The Art of Showing Up (B)
  • Wicked (L) (!!)
  • Inspired: How to Create Tech Products Customers Love (B)
  • George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker (L)
  • The Witcher S2 (T)
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home (F)
  • Hawkeye (T)
  • Die Hard (F)
  • Elf (F)[R]
  • Molly’s Game (F)
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (F)[R]
  • Insecure S5 (T)
  • Spider-Man: Miles Morales (G)

That’s everything I read, watched, listened to, and played — in their entirety — this year!

Of note is that this year is the first that I actually played these video games to completion on my own. In past years, I marked a game as “complete” via backseat gaming, as in little to no actual controller-in-hands time for me. But this year, my partner encouraged me to try to play them all the way through on my own, with minimal help on some of the difficult boss fights for God of War (it was supposed to be “just give me the story” mode…) and then refusing to help me beat any of Miles Morales so that I could fully own beating AND 100%-ing that game. I have a long way to go as a gamer but I feel less like the Fake Gamer Girl™ label that I have embraced for the past several years. Not sure I’ll be able to start streaming like my partner thinks I can, but at least I can hold my own on these easier difficulties of games. (Plus, God of War taught me so much about being a father… I’ll never forget it.)

You can follow along with my 2022 media logging at sipofstarrshine.com/media-log, which is kept up to date throughout the year!

2020 Media Log

Inspired by my friend Ben Hong, who got the idea from Jen Myers, I am continuing the practice of tracking my media consumption this year. This will now be replaced with a 2021 media log, which I will update regularly on its dedicated page. Here are all the movies, shows, books, albums, games, and more that I logged this year.

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Free Ingrid Michaelson Concert

Last week, I was able to see Ingrid Michaelson perform some of her fan-favorite hits and never-before-performed new songs as the concluding concert for the 2016 Summer Fest concert series.

Absolutely free.

It was an incredible opportunity that (luckily?) not many people knew about. Tyson’s Corner Center had been holding a summer long concert series, featuring a variety of acts, from American Idol contestants to a “Kidz Bop” concert that I spotted on the schedule a while back. The grand finale was this performance by Ingrid Michaelson, who has a new album coming out soon and will be returning to DC for her tour in November. (I posted clips of her concert on my Snapchat if you saw ’em!)

DSC01296
Tommy McFly introducing Ingrid as she walks up to the stage

Tommy McFly from 94.7 Fresh FM’s the Tommy Show was there to introduce her, so of course my friends and I got a kick out of seeing one of our radio DJs in person. (You never quite know what to expect just hearing their voices for several years!) He introduced Ingrid, who came out looking like… the cool girl that you wanted to be friends with and weren’t too intimidated to make it so. I’ve always liked her songs on the radio, but I never sought out listening to any of them, so I never paid her much mind.

But the girl can sing…Read More »

Feeling French Music

Happy first day of spring! It snowed here (because of course it did) but I hope you are enjoying free Rita’s and warmer weather without suffering from allergies.

Lately, I’ve just been really feeling French music. Not necessarily French by nationality but French as in the language that is being sung. I think I can trace this kick back to seeing a Stromae music video for the first time. It was this one:

Tumblr was a big fan and I was, too. I had first heard of Stromae through Pentatonix, actually, when they did a cover of his hit song “Papaoutai”. Their cover was really good, but I love Stromae’s video.

First of all, freaky fresh dance moves. Second of all, I really love how weird but not too-weird his music videos are? I get pretty easily waaaaay weirded out by music videos. Call me provincial, but the “artistic message” behind really “avant garde” music videos is very frequently completely lost on me. With Stromae’s videos, I am really engaged by the interesting video but I am also listening pretty closely to the music.

Even though I know French, I don’t really listen to the lyrics too closely when I listen to French songs. It’s like when I had my kpop phase; I listen to the songs because they sound good, and very rarely do I pay attention to what the words themselves mean. In fact, I rarely listen for the lyrics in English songs the first few listens. I have never spent much time on lyrics when it comes to listening to songs.

Anyway, French music keeps following me about so I thought I’d share a couple of music videos with you all. I made a Paris playlist ages ago, intending to release it with my Paris blog. That won’t be out for a while, since I spent a long time in Paris and… I am putting it off knowing how much I need to put into it. Also, these are mostly contemporary songs. Before this current music phase, I liked listening to a lot of older French music and was not at all familiar with anything from the last decade or two. (Or really any decade, let’s be real.)

Besides Stromae (who I am seeing in September!), I have also been listening to these artists on-and-off for the past few years:



Coeur de pirate
(love her)


Vanessa Paradis
(who is on my Paris playlist)


Yelle
(the first contemporary francophone artist I ever listed to was Yelle)


Camille
(you may know her best from her work on the Ratatouille soundtrack)

Do you listen to French music?
Can you recommend any other artists/songs for me?