We've all been there — you're in a bar, the mood is what you can best describe as "meh," your friends are either too drunk, not drunk enough, or talking to other people that aren't you (traitors) and you're left sitting there like a total loser. It also doesn't help that you're nursing a poorly mixed drink that tastes a whole lot more like anguish than a vodka cranberry. Your head rests in your clammy palm and your sleeve is getting wet from the drink condensation and you look about as happy to be alive as Kristen Stewart. It's a rough night — that is, until it happens.
Your song comes on.
No, not your fave song at the moment or the one you like to wax poetic about once you've had one too many glasses of Riesling. This song is the one that makes you, a poor man's Eeyore, and the rest of the downtrodden bar come to LIFE. The song that is a unifier, the one that gets everyone to passionately belt out with wild hand gestures, regardless of culture, gender, or creed.
Of course, "the song" doesn't always have to be the remedy to a bad day or poor night out. "The song" is just as effective whether you're ready to dance on top of the bar or fall asleep under it. In fact, it's best served in a bar full of tank top clad people who are out at 12 a.m. on a Tuesday simply because it's summer and that's something to celebrate. Because for real, the humidity and bad hair days will forever reign over gray skies, biting wind, and that nuisance from the sky we call snow.
So here are just a few of the songs that make strangers in bars cling onto each other like Jack and Rose on that frigid-ass raft (well, like, before she pushes him off...):
THE ULTIMATE "I DON'T CARE WHO YOU ARE, HUG ME" BAR SING-A-LONG: "DON'T STOP BELIEVING" BY JOURNEY
*Pumps fists to the sky*
Note: The Glee Cast version is also an acceptable substitute.
THE "I'M SO GLAD YOU'RE AS ANGSTY AS I AM RIGHT NOW": "JUMPER" BY THIRD EYE BLIND
THE "I'M ENOUGH DRINKS IN TO PRETEND LIKE I LIKE COUNTRY MUSIC": "WAGON WHEEL" BY DARIUS RUCKER
WAIT... Hootie sings this?! ALRIGHTTTTTT.
THE "OMG I LOVE THIS SONG BUT ONLY KNOW THE FIRST FIVE WORDS": "JUICY" BY NOTORIOUS B.I.G.
Yeah, yeah, so there are people who know the whole thing. But that's what lip-syncing is for, okay?
THE "IT FEELS A WHOLE LOT LIKE MIDDLE SCHOOL UP IN THIS BITCH": "TIPSY" BY J-KWON
ERRRRRRRRBODY IN THIS CLUB IS MOST DEFINITELY FEELING TIPSY IN ORDER TO ENJOY THIS.
THE "NO, I CAN'T REMEMBER THE PREAMBLE TO THE CONSTITUTION BUT YOU BET YOUR ASS I KNOW EVERY DOTTED I AND CROSSED T IN THIS SONG": "BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY" QUEEN
I'm fairly certain that this is the song that can inspire world peace.
THE "ARE YOU SURE HUMANITY DIDN'T PEAK IN 1986?": "LIVIN' ON A PRAYER" BON JOVI
THE "SURE I'M AN ANIMAL WHEN THIS SONG IS ON BUT I WILL SLOWLY RETREAT BACK TO MY CORNER ONCE IT'S OVER": "CAKE" BY RIHANNA
You finish dancing and slowly remove your leg from its perch on the bar. *Looks to left* Shock. *Looks to right* Awe.
THE "MAYBE IT'S NOT ME BUT AT LEAST ONE PERSON IN THIS BAR HAS BEEN BROKEN UP WITH TONIGHT": "SEVENTY TIMES SEVEN" BY BRAND NEW
Nothing, and I mean nothing, will ever delight my once-adolescent soul more than the passionate way a group of adults can bond over their emo phase.
THE "DON'T LOOK AT ME LIKE THAT, YOU'RE CRYING TOO": "BIG GIRLS DON'T CRY" BY FERGIE
I've actually been in a bar where the entirety of the establishment sang along, including the bar keep. It was a religious experience, one that cleanses the soul and renews hope.
THE "OMG YASSS! WAIT, WHY AM I SINGING THIS?": "BABY GOT BACK" BY SIR MIX-A-LOT
Fear not, Sir. We don't want none of your anaconda, either.
THE "AND IN THIS MOMENT, I SWEAR I AM BEYONCE": "SINGLE LADIES (PUT A RING ON IT)" BEYONCE
Wait, what's that? You're not single? That's funny, because when this song is on you ARE.