As an inner city college, most people don’t live anywhere near UCB, and that means one thing. Commuting. Commuting is horrible, tiring and extra minutes or hours on top of an already long day. I’m complaining, but some of my friends travel ridiculous distances to study at UCB every day. Nevertheless – there is one thing I can’t step on a bus or train without. My headphones.
Music makes the endless days of waiting for your train or sitting squished up against the window of the bus a little bit more bearable.
I’ve got fairly eclectic taste. This may come from having a dad into Motown and reggae, and a mother into classic rock and musicals, a sister into cheesy pop and African reggae and a brother into rap, R&B and hip hop, you could say I’ve had a fair share of music exposure. Me, however? I don’t really have a specific genre – I’m into a bit of everything (but don’t put heavy metal or techno anywhere near me).
When I’m on the train the music I pick is striking a balance between calming me down and letting me chill but not so much I fall asleep and miss my next stop. Being someone who can fall asleep ANYWHERE, it’s important to keep me awake – but at the same time I don’t really like listening to the same songs I go to a club to dance to.
So here are my top 15 train songs…
- Lemar – If there’s any justice in the world
So this song has to be one of ultimate favourites, Lemar has such a smooth voice and it’s such an underrated old school tune. Listening to this at the end of a long day staring out the window is perfect.
“If there’s any justice in the world. I would be your man, you would be my girl”
- Jorja smith – On my mind
Jorja is an amazing up and coming artist, winning award after award, topping the charts. I actually come from the same town as Jorja and we went to the same school, she was a few years above me. Not that that makes me bias but I actually love this song, even though it’s one of her earlier ones.
“Now I’m growing wise to your sugar-coated lies”
- Beyonce ft. Shakira – Beautiful liar
Shakira is one of my all-time favourites and I think it was my childhood dream to be able to dance like her. This song is so good and with the combination of two of the world’s most iconic female artists, how could you not get an amazing tune.
“Let’s not kill the karma, let’s not start a fight, It’s not worth the drama, for a beautiful liar”
- Anne-Marie – 2002
This is one of the newest songs on my list but since the first time I heard it, I’ve loved this song. I don’t know how many times I’ve listened to it and it’s the newest addition to my playlist.
“Oops I got ninety-nine problems singing bye, bye, bye”
- Usher – U remind me
This is the sort of music I love listening to. I love smooth R&B like Ne-yo, Craig David, Usher, and old school Chris Brown. This is the sort of thing I sing along to (badly) on the train because I know all the words and there are a lot of high notes for me to attempt (also badly).
“You remind me of a girl that I once knew. See her face whenever I, I look at you”
- Shaggy ft. Ne-yo – You girl
This song makes me want to be on a beach in Jamaica somewhere, soaking up rays, dancing with a Pina colada in my hand. It’s such a chill out song, relaxes me on the busy trains.
“Sunshine and the flowers, jealous of the power”
- Fugees – Killing me softly with his song
The Fugees are such a good group anyway, but this song is amazing. I love Lauryn Hill’s voice (anyone that’s seen Sister Act 2 will get it), so this is such a twist on a classic.
“And there he was, this young boy, a stranger to my eyes”
- Fall Out Boy – Centuries
I remember being obsessed with this song as soon as it came out! I’m not a massive rock fan but I love the rocky feel to this song for some weird reason.
“Some legends are told, some turn to dust or to gold”
- Protoje – Who knows
I don’t know what it is about music that sounds like it should be played on the beach, but apparently I think they also work for train journeys. This song is so relaxed it’s practically horizontal! I actually challenge you to find a more relaxing song.
“And I suppose I’m pleased, to be chilling in the West Indies”
- TLC – Waterfalls
After a hilarious parody in We’re the Millers, this song was bought back into the public eye. I love this song and it’s so chilled and due to its repetitiveness I do know all the words.
“Please stick to the rivers and the lakes that you’re used to”
- Seal – Kissed from a Rose
For anyone that has seen the film Vacation (it is on Netflix!), this song has been given a new leash of life. Kiss from a Rose is a classic power ballad and ask my friends, I sing it a lot.
“Yes I compare you to a kiss from a rose on the grey”
- Kelly – Ignition
So when I’m at a party, anyone that knows me, knows this is the song that gets me up to dance every time. Listening to this on the train makes me want to get up and dance.
“Runnin’ her hands through my ‘fro”
- Rhianna – Here I go again
So this song must have been from one of Rhianna’s very first albums and it is so different from the iconic Rhianna we think of today. This is such a chill out song and has that Caribbean vibe to it.
“Every time I hear your name, it’s like the sun shined through the rain”
- Fountains of Wayne – Stacy’s Mom
This is such a tune! Ultimate 2000’s playlist. I loved this song when I was younger, and remember going to after school club and singing it on the karaoke machines.
“Stacy, can’t you see you’re just not the girl for me. I know it might be wrong, but I’m in love with Stacy’s mom”
- Whitney Houston – My Love is your Love
If you know me, you will know I am a huge Whitney fan and this is one of my favourite ever Whitney songs. This is a really relaxed and romantic song, which I love.
“’Cause your love is my love, And my love is your love”
So, if you are travelling in and out of Birmingham to UCB, try my playlist and see how much faster your journey goes – just try not to sing on the train!