To All The Musicians I Loved Before

Owl City.

I started listening to Adam Young in middle school when I found out that "Fireflies" was actually part of the album Ocean Eyes by Owl City. I listened to the entire album about twenty times while completing an online class for high school credit. Around maybe 2015 or so, after I burned through other albums including All Things Bright And Beautiful, his music started to change and his postings on Facebook got more bizzare. (Yes, bizarre IS the right word.) The last time I remember actively listening to him was at the end of Wreck-It-Ralph.

Rae Sremmund.

Once, in a beauty store, I saw these two men rapping on a beach on a TV screen in an isle by the store registers. I kind of stopped shopping for a few minutes at least just to see what the song was about. I realized that they were singing the same song that came on my school bus radio. (For some reason, no buses played music anymore when I got to senior year.) I liked them. It wasn't until I listened to Sremmlife3 (2017) that I was sure that Swae Lee would be the one to (actually) go solo. "Sunflower" was a breakthrough song (which only lasted a few seconds on the movie that used the song for its whole marketing strategy), but it looks to me like it is a blessing and curse for Swae Lee. Through his airy vocals and runs, he's still trying to prove to himself that he can top himself on the charts. Slim Jxmmy is now a top-rated feature artist. I quickly lost interest after 2018 or so.

Adam Lambert.

In 2009, "If I Had You" was a mainstay on the radios. I remember dancing my heart out to it during VH1s Jumpstart Music Video program, which aired right on time every morning before school started. It was great in the summer when I could watch the program until maybe noon. The top hat was what drew me in. Adam looked like Mr. Wonka but with a dangerous charm and smoldering, glittery eyes. I was hooked. "Aftermath" and "What Do You Want From Me" are still anthems that play in my head on days where I stare at the ceiling and think about life. Then, around the time "Close Our Eyes" came out, I mysteriously stopped listening to him. I can't remember who else I started to follow closely at the time, but I don't think I missed out on too much more from him. The last time I heard, he was touring with Queen.

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