Your high school career is coming to a close and the exciting world of college is just around the corner—sweet! We know you’re psyched to start your higher ed journey, but do you have the right tunes to get into a university mindset?
Well fear not, cause we’ve put together the ultimate “pumped for college” playlist to get you amped for your first year.
Alice Cooper – School’s Out
An oldie but a goodie, Alice Cooper’s “School’s Out” has been the quintessential end-of-the-semester theme for decades. Once you hear that opening guitar riff you can’t help but throw your books on the ground and kick those classroom doors wide open.
Belle & Sebastian – Expectations
If the goal of the last track was to get you hyped for graduation, Belle & Sebestian’s “Expectations” is the other side of that coin—a softer, more melodic song meant to evoke reflections on your high school years. Whether you were a star athlete, band geek, or art kid, there’s something in these lyrics for everyone.
Vampire Weekend – Campus
When this album first dropped back in 2008 (seems like forever ago, right?) it was as if every college student on the planet was listening in. And why wouldn’t they?! Loaded with catchy choruses and sing-along lyrics, Vampire Weekend were the poster boys for preppy indie pop. Songs like “Campus” won over upper and lowerclassmen alike with its whimsical description of student life.
Kanye West – School Spirit
Love him or hate him, there’s no denying Kanye West has left his mark on the world of music. West is also one of the primary artists responsible for the surge of rappers referencing their college years in their rhymes, and no song in West’s catalog better reflects that trend than “School Spirit.” With frat and sorority name drops galore, this is just as much of an ode to Greek life as it is the life of a hustler.
Asher Roth – I Love College
If Kanye West introduced the world to college-themed rap music, then Asher Roth brought it to the masses. “I Love College” is this MC’s salute to his favorite aspects of the collegiate landscape. While Roth does list off some of the more entertaining shenanigans you’ll find on campus, we recommend following his advice in the same capacity we would recommend listening to his music—with definite moderation.
The Jam – Art School
So maybe raging parties and drinking marathons aren’t for you. Maybe you’re more interested in developing your craft and honing your skill set. Sound about right? If so, give “Art School” by 80′s New Wave band The Jam a listen. Everyone knows it’s the creative types that have the biggest ideas, and this track celebrates art institutions as the breeding grounds for individual expression.
T.I. ft. Rihanna – Live Your Life
Heading off to college is all about living your life—how could we exclude a song that calls for the same thing? Turn this track up and throw your hands in the air, it’s time to start a whole new chapter in your life.
Taylor Swift – Change
Along with the new experiences you’ll be encountering, change will become a prominent theme over these next few years. People will come and go, ideas will build and fade, and at the end of your journey you’ll have come out a new person. This Taylor Swift song epitomizes those themes in her iconic country style.
James Brown – Don’t be a Dropout
When you hear the words “educational advocacy,” The Godfather of Funk probably isn’t the first person to come to mind. Well believe it or not, way back in his early days James Brown recorded this single about his friends that dropped out of school, and the hardships they faced because of their decision. Even though the song was released over 45 years ago, the relevance of Brown’s words could not be more apt to today’s tough economy. You worked this hard to graduate high school and get into college—don’t let the opportunity of a lifetime slip by!
Have a suggestion for a song we can add? What tracks are making it onto your college playlist? Tell us in a comment below.