By Olivia Daly and Grace Sukari
As Year 12 students, graduation feels like the comfortable and somewhat happy part of our lives is coming to an end. Rather than dwelling on what we could’ve done differently in Paper 1 of our English Trial, or what we should be doing to prepare for the HSC, let’s take a trip down memory lane and reflect on the music that got us through those tough times, and continue to hold a special place in our hearts.
Below you will find a list of our favourite albums that have grown up with us, and why they are so significant.
‘Abbey Road’ by The Beatles
I mean it wouldn’t be ‘Liv’s ‘Albums That Grew Up with Me’ without at least one Beatles mention. I would say that all their albums had an impact on my upbringing, but Abbey Road had to be the top pick. I mean come on, this album is quite literally iconic, a classic and the best thing music has ever given us. When I would drive around with my Grandparents, you best believe the Beatles were playing. Whether it be a non-stop sing-along to ‘Octopus Garden’, playing the air drums to ‘Come Together’, or just admiring the masterpiece that is ‘Something’, not one song would be a skip. My personal favourites would definitely be ‘Golden Slumbers’, ‘Here Comes the Sun’, and the best 25 seconds of music ever - ‘Her Majesty’ (I would quite literally do anything for a longer version pls). Anyway, this is definitely the album that shaped me and my music taste.
‘1989’ - Taylor Swift
The year was 2014… I had gone to Taylor Swift’s ‘Red Tour’ with my older sister, but I wasn’t super familiar with any of the songs on the album, and personally, I wasn’t a massive fan because I liked Katy Perry at the time (if you know you know). I was listening to the radio one day and heard the phrase “and the players gonna play. Play. play…” and instantly I knew I had to hear the elusive 1989. So a quick trip to JB-HI-FI, and finally, I owned a copy of ‘1989 - Deluxe Edition’. Since that day my life has been forever changed. This album holds a special place in my heart, particularly the tracks ‘Clean’, ‘Out of the Woods’, and ‘New Romantics’. Whilst currently, I’m obsessed with ‘Red TV’ (go listen now if you haven't..), 1989 will always be my ride or die.
‘Rumours’ - Fleetwood Mac
I can’t remember a time when my Mum wasn’t blasting ‘Landslide’ by Fleetwood Mac. The dreamy guitar solo towards the end of the song, brings me back to the good ol’ days. Truly this is the album that never dies, whether it be Lindsey Buckingham’s godsend guitar skills in ‘Never Going Back Again’, or the earworm that is ‘Dreams’, there is one song for every mood. This would be the album that I’d play during my long road trips, and I still wouldn’t get sick of it. This is THE coming-of-age album.
‘Divide’ - Ed Sheeran
It was a difficult decision to choose between what Ed Sheeran Album I would put on this list, but ultimately I had to go with Divide. I remember the year it came out, my family and I took a holiday to the UK and drove around Ireland, and the only CD we had was Ed Sheeran's ‘Divide’ - so I associate this album with the green hills of the countryside and the dreary weather that characterises the country. Whilst I’m sure we’ve all heard ‘Shape of You’ and ‘Perfect’, I know my favourites have to be ‘How Would You Feel’ and ‘Supermarket Flowers’ (Yes I cry every time I listen to it, and I know you do too). Not one skip on this album, which is why I chose it, and a special mention to the guitar solo in ‘Dive’ (I would single-handedly die for that solo).
‘21’ - Adele
The best songs in Adele’s ‘21’ are ‘Rumour Has It’, ‘Set Fire To The Rain’, and ‘Someone Like You’ with their emotional and personal lyrics that have me belting like I just became a single mother with three kids. Whilst I can’t relate to the themes of her music, Adele’s incredible vocal talent is something I thought I could emulate in the shower at the ripe age of 6, and to this day, trying to hit those high notes has caused me to almost hit so many cars on the road. I repeat - almost.
‘ABBA Gold’ - Abba
Whilst ‘ABBA Gold’ isn’t technically an album, it’s a compilation of ABBA’s best songs (and some of the best songs of all time). If I had to choose just 3, ‘The Winner Takes It All’, ‘Voulez-Vous’, and ‘Chiquitita’ would be my pick, but if I were held at gunpoint and was told I’d be set free if I knew the words to this whole album, tell my family I’ll see them in 1 hour and 18 minutes. ABBA’s catchy tunes and incredible vocals have stood the test of time, and the piano melody in ‘Chiquitita’ is recognisable to almost everyone as the ‘Euro-Summer’ anthem of the year.
‘Doo-Wops & Hooligans’ - Bruno Mars
I know that the world can’t agree on much, but if you sat our biggest leaders down in a room together and made them listen to Bruno Mars’ ‘Doo-Wops & Hooligans’, I think we would achieve world peace. Everyone can agree that the songs on this album are just absolute bangers. My personal favourites are ‘Grenade’, ‘Marry You’, and ‘Just The Way You Are’ because they make basically everyone want a man like Bruno Mars. His positive energy, incredible lyrics, and skill in blending musical styles of Pop and R&B, make ‘Doo-Wops & Hooligans’ an infectious album.
‘My Everything’ - Ariana Grande
Ariana Grande’s ‘My Everything’ was the most amazing gift to my 9-year-old self who was the biggest fan of ‘Victorious’ and ‘Sam & Cat’. At way too young of an age, I could rap all of ‘Problem’ and ‘Bang Bang’, and probably (definitely) still can today. Not only does she have an insane vocal range, but her collaborations with other incredible artists, especially Nicki Minaj, The Weeknd, Iggy Azalea and Jessie J, make her album so much better.