I know that they say that smell is the biggest memory trigger, but I think that "they" haven't ever heard a particularly upbeat '90s song you loved growing up whilst approaching 30 minutes on the treadmill. You know what? Who are "they," anyway? Scientist dudes? Psh, what do they know? Because I'll tell you, I barely passed high school Chemistry — but I know when I hear a particular "vintage" song, it can act as a melodic, somewhat haphazard time machine.
The song in question doesn't even have to specifically be from the '90s. It's just that there are just certain songs that bring you back to certain stages of your childhood that distinctly remind you of growing up. It could be that your mom constantly played it as she cleaned the house, or it was always on your dad's favorite oldies radio station — or, maybe, it was on the soundtrack of one of your favorite movies.
Undoubtedly though, the best nostalgic songs are the ones that inject happiness right through your ears and down into that older, wearier heart of yours. It's the ones that bring back memories of sunny days, less responsibility, and spending time outside rather than mulling over your friend's tropical vacation picture while you waste away in your cubicle during a snowstorm in January. Anyway, my goal here — now that spring has officially sprung and things like joy and happiness are back in style — is to recreate your chipper sorts of spring times as a child or a teen with these undeniably upbeat tunes.
(You can thank me by sending me a skip-it and some sidewalk chalk at a later date.)
Third Eye Blind, "Semi Charmed Life"
If the first three notes don't instantly improve your mood, I'm not sure what will.
Bright Eyes, "First Day of My Life"
Sweet happiness in song form.
Picture it: listening to this on your walkman in your jean skort and high heeled sketchers. Yes, you were always a fashion icon.
Len, "Steal My Sunshine"
Christina Aguilera, "Come On Over (All I Want Is You)"
Does it suddenly seem brighter?
Hall & Oates, "You Make My Dreams Come True"
*Disclaimer: Once you see the (500) Days of Summer version, you can't unsee it.*
Deep Blue Something, "Breakfast At Tiffany's"
Easy listening, for sho.
Outkast, "Hey Ya"
What's cooler than being cool? Being warm.
Blink-182, "All The Small Things"
You can't sing this with conviction without getting a little Vitamin D.
Michael Jackson, "The Way You Make Me Feel"
I'd like this to play in the background of all my walks around budding foliage.
Mariah Carey featuring Jay-Z, "Heartbreaker"
Your heart will not break listening to this song.