It certainly has been a while! The DePaulia’s official return to print also signifies the return of DeJamz — and it means that I’ll have to start cooking up themes that tie these songs together once more. Since it’s the first DeJamz in what feels like forever and I am admittedly not operating in top form on the theme side of things, this week I’ll share my favorite songs of the season.
“The Other Side of the Door” (Taylor’s Version)- Taylor Swift
“Fearless” has been my favorite Taylor Swift album for over a decade. When listening to Swift’s re-recorded version -– the first album from her back catalog that she gained full ownership of — this song immediately jumped out to me. While I was always a bit lukewarm to the original recording, largely in part to Swift’s less-than-stellar vocal delivery, the added maturity and strength to her voice makes a world of difference. The outro is something that was designed to be repeated over and over again, and you can bet that I do that every time.
“Scott Street” – Phoebe Bridgers
It goes without saying that last summer, like the rest of 2020, was a big letdown. While I didn’t get to have a big-city adventure like I originally anticipated, I found myself utilizing new ways to entertain myself, like taking long, aimless walks around my neighborhood. On said walks, I would typically listen to “Scott Street,” with the wistful tone and beautiful instrumentation making the days feel less mundane. When I listen to the song now, however, I can appreciate those walks I previously found boring, and I make an effort to incorporate both into my current routine.
“Favourite Colour” – Carly Rae Jepsen
I cannot believe how long it took me to discover that “Emotion,” Carly Rae Jepsen’s third studio album, is pop perfection. Having heard nothing but amazing things about the album for years, I’m not sure why it took me so long to come around to it, but better late than never. While all of the songs are great in their own right, the album’s closer is my current favorite. The combination of evocative lyrics and ‘80s-inspired production gives the song a serene, cinematic quality to it that I can’t get enough of.
“Sleep to Dream” – Fiona Apple
After I got my first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, this was the first song that played when I shuffled my library. Despite not matching my decidedly happy mood at all, I listened to it in its entirety, immersing myself in the song’s moody ambiance and razor-sharp wordplay. Written when Apple was 14 and one of her first commercial successes, “Sleep to Dream” is the kind of song most artists would be proud to have as their artistic peak; the fact that it was only a taste of what she could offer makes it all the more impressive.
“Emmylou” – First Aid Kit
This song has been a favorite of mine since high school, but I recently rekindled my love for it was rekindled when it unexpectedly played during an episode of “Love Island.” When worlds collide! “Emmylou” is a gorgeous tribute to authentic country music, with an inspired production and perfect harmonies. Even if you don’t like country, “Emmylou” has a sincerity that can’t be denied, which I think transcends genre.