Five Awful Graduation Songs - Gnarly Yarns
Well, uh, hi there. As you’ll soon be able to tell by the impeccable spelling and grammar, I’m not Conner. I’ve been working with him for a while, trying to clean up some of his bigger spelling errors and grammatical issues, and that’s obviously a tough job. But to be fair, he’s a good guy with lots of good ideas. Like asking me to write a blog for him on Gnarly Yarns. How could I say no to an offer like that? I’m not sure how often I’ll be doing this, but I think it’ll be fun to contribute and put some fresh non-Conner content on here. So without further ado, my first post.

This year I’m graduating from university and am about to embark on my own into the real world for the first time, really. A university graduation is the same as a high school graduation in many ways: you have to wear the cap and gown that looks good on nobody, you get to stand in a hot sweaty room full of a bunch of people you’ve never seen before and didn’t even know went to your school, and you’re guaranteed to go to an after party where everyone gets a little too drunk and starts crying about how they’re never going to see each other again when that Vitamin C song comes on.

Now, that song may be corny, but it does exactly what it’s supposed to do. It hits that soft spot that makes you realize for the first time that hanging out these people who are your best friends may not always be as easy as heading to their house while skipping the last class of the day because your teacher is a senile old man who doesn’t care if you’re there or not. Since I’ve lived with my best friends for the last four years, it’s even harder since I wont be able to just walk down the hall and say hi. So songs like Graduation (Friends Forever) are particularly hard hitting to me right now. There are a few that are way better than Vitamin C’s and some that are way worse, so let me present to you (in no particular order) “Five Awful Graduation Songs (That Will Still Make You Cry At Graduation).”

  1. Vitamin C – Graduation (Friends Forever)
Okay, so this song is king of the castle when it comes to graduation songs. Name another Vitamin C song. Just try to. No? Don’t worry, nobody else can. Well maybe there’s one girl in her early 30s who claims that Vitamin C (the album) changed her life. Vitamin C’s career was manufactured to release the perfect graduation song so she could live off the royalties forever. The saddest thing? Graduation (Friends Forever) peaked at #12 on the Billboard charts. Vitamin C’s biggest hit isn’t even a top 10! The video features every 90s high school cliché, which is both embarrassing and nostalgic. It’s inescapable, but ultimately a really good graduation song.

2. Green Day – Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)
Another 90s staple with an alternate title. This song came out before American Idiot made Green Day famous among the no-one-understands-me, emo kids of my generation (which, lets be honest, was almost all of us in our early teens). I can still remember how hugely popular this song was for my Grade 8 grad. I have it on at least 4 mixed CDs from that time (it would have been more if I hadn’t thrown out all the mixed CDs I gave the DJ at our grad after party). It’s simple and pretty and makes you want to bawl your eyes out. Add that to the theme of being confused about where you’ll be going in your life and the look-back-without-indifference chorus line “I hope you had the time of your life” and this song is the Green Day perfect amount of melancholy and nostalgia to make it a great graduation song.

3. The Rembrandts – I’ll Be There For You
You may not recognize this song by name, but if you watched TV in the 90s you know it. It might as well have the alternate title “Friends” Theme Song. Everyone join in for the clap-clap-clap-clap. This song was destined to make this band a one-hit-wonder – the video featured the entire Friends cast, in character. What makes it a perfect graduation song is the same thing that made it the perfect theme song for a show about 6 twenty-something’s trying to figure out their lives. It’s all about the uncertainty of the big, scary adult world being tempered by having good friends. It hits the same nerve as Graduation (Friends Forever) and Good Riddance (Time of Your Life), making it another candidate for a grad song that will make you cry.

4.Nickelback – Photograph

Before I start talking about why this song is a great grad song, I just want to make a WTF complaint. Given that Nickelback is a Canadian band (not saying I’m proud of that, just stating a fact) it’s kinda funny that the video is unavailable in Canada. Admittedly this song may be the worst song on the list musically, but it’s got the right nostalgic feel. Saying goodbye is tough. Having Chad Kroeger rasp/scream it at your friends for you, that’s just cruel. But you’ll still probably hear it around grad and, if you listen to the lyrics, you’ll understand why. On second thought, just read the lyrics in the description to the video, it’s the ultimate form of torture to listen to the whole song.

5. Sarah McLachlan – I Will Remember You

This song is easily the sappiest of the lot. It’s Sarah McLachlan, how could it not? She’s Canada’s Celine Dion – Oh, wait, that’d be Celine Dion. Who knew that Canada’s number one musical export is sappy ballad songstresses? At least I didn’t put up the video of her with all of the abandoned animals. That one’s cruelty to humans. For some reason I thought this song was on the Dawson’s Creek Soundtrack, combining sappy 90s pop with a sappy 90s melodrama, but I think I might be wrong. Like all of Sarah’s slow ballads this song aims right for the heart, and hits home when you’re sitting in a room full of hundreds of other sweaty grads, making it another grad song that will make you cry at graduation.

Well, now that I’m openly bawling at the content of my first blog post I should probably wrap it up. These are songs you probably wouldn’t want to hear in any other context, but when it comes to graduation, they’re perfect.

Its Conner here. And if you're interested in doing your own Special Report, on any subject feel free to join the forum, make a thread with your subject, and maybe I'll snatch it up and feature it as a Special Report. Or if you have me on Facebook, message me and I'll get back to when I can.

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