MixTape Monday: Fist-Pumping Guilty Pleasures

the staff of pop-break freely admits to possible incidents of fist-pumping to the following …

We all have guilty pleasures, especially when it comes to music. The musical genre which we find the most guilty pleasures are those big-beat dance jams that have been brought to the mainstream pop culture mindset by the cast of MTV’s Jersey Shore. And we at Pop-Break are not ashamed to admit there are certain fist-pumpin’ anthems, certain big-hook ballads that in our minds we know are just flat-out awful songs — but in our souls (usually after a few adult beverages) we celebrate them through the art of dance. So … please don’t judge us, bro.

Bill Bodkin
“Hey Baby” — Pitbull featuring T-Pain

Let’s get something straight: This song is awful. Straight-up terrible. T-Pain sounds as though his desire to be transformed from a Dirty South rapper into a walking Auto Tune has finally come to fruition. And on the “lead vocals,” Pitbull puts in one of the laziest performances in the history of singing. I mean, the dude barely tries.

Yet, I love this songs with every fiber of my being because no matter how bad the vocals are, no matter how stupid the lyrics are — that beat is insanely infectious. It’s this huge, exciting piece of house/electro bass that after a few shots of whiskey you will find yourself doing the robot in the middle of wherever you are. You will try and breakdance in the middle of the Seaside boardwalk. It’s this massive beat that hooks me in and after a while T-Pain’s mush-mouthed auto-tuned singing becomes enjoyable, Pitbull’s lazy flow becomes entertaining. This song is pop music mind control!

And I’m okay with that.

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Joe Zorzi
“Everytime We Touch” — Cascada

Okay, this is hands down the best club banger of all time. “Everytime We Touch” was the highlight of every school dance I’ve ever been to. If you’re trying to get a rager started, this song is a must. It was made for the fist pump. You know what? I’m not even guilty about this pleasure because this song is just too awesome. You got a problem with that? Then come at me, bro.

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Brent Johnson
“Milkshake” — Kelis

Philosophers will never analyze it. Valentine’s cards will never quote it. But damn, ‘Milkshake’ is one hell of a song.

It was the single that made Kelis a chart-topper in 2003 — a slinky novelty about everyone’s favorite fountain confection. At least I think that’s what she’s singing about. Right?

‘Kung Fu Fighting’ and ‘Disco Duck’ are laughable novelty songs because they’re nothing more than that: novelties. But listen to ‘Milkshake’ — I mean really listen to it — and you’ll see that it’s actually a pretty good pop song. The words are ridiculous, but they bounce. The music is oddly Egyptian, but it’s hypnotic.

And it makes me wanna shake it. I’ve sung it everywhere: At college parties. In the parking lot of Target. Waiting in line for a Guster show in the freezing cold outside of the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, N.J.

It really does bring the boys to the yard. And damn right, it’s better than yours.

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Logan Fowler
“Poker Face” — Lady Gaga

I will say this outright: I don’t “get” Lady Gaga. She dresses funky (and I’m not using funky in a positive sense) and her music is out there. However, I will admit she has some catchy tunes in her library.

Now, whether I’m at wedding, or a reunion, or something of similar nature, if “Poker Face” gets sung or spun, I will get out on the tiled or wooden floor and make mad moves. I’ve even added my own personal touch to it; as Gaga sings the words “Poker Face,” I will wave my hand in from of my face (not unlike WWE’s John Cena with his “You Can’t See Me” gesture) and people WILL do the same. Yes, I am a trend setter.

So, I’d like to thank you, Ms. Gaga, for allowing me to not only set trends, but giving this white boy a reason to move and groove. I don’t regret saying it; “Poker Face” is catchy as hell, and you best believe when it is blasting, Fowler is dancing (alcohol required).

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Ann Hale
“I Want It That Way” — The Backstreet Boys
“Bleeding Love” — Leona Lewis

Its a toss-up. I cant help but sing either one at the top of my lungs when they come on. Leona Lewis gave my bff Krystal and I many a drunken entertaining night, waking up my neighbors and lame ass roommate, blasting the song in her car, in the driveway, with the windows down at 3 a.m. … while BSB is just my guilty pleasure. They say admitting you have a problem is the first step …

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Jason Stives
“Party In The USA” — Miley Cyrus

It pains me to say it, but Miley Cyrus’ massive hit can be heard blurting from my mouth on real heavy benders. By heavy benders, I mean just being even the tiny bit drunk, but even on a sober experience, I am strangely drawn to this song. It’s catchy and I deny anyone else to say otherwise regardless of Cyrus’ status and her pension for doppleganging with a blonde wig. I know the lyrics are nonsensical (since when did wearing stilettos solidify being in L.A?), but noddin’ my head like yeah will quickly warrant me moving my hips like yeah. Regardless, somewhere between the knock of Sublime-esque guitar playing and hearing Miley laugh at song’s end and assuming she was smoking Salvia brings a smile of regret to my face. But I’ll still sing it.

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Alexandra Johnson
“Up In Here” — DMX

Such a guilty pleasure of mine — no idea why or how I know all the words.

Daniel Cohen
“Glamorous” — Fergie

The most confusing thing about this song is that I find it hard to believe someone likes Taco Bell as much as Fergie claims she still eats there even with all her fame. Seriously, go to Wendys or In-and-Out Burger. A lot has to go wrong for me to get on the dance floor, but if this song comes on, it unfortunately helps the cause. To be honest, my favorite part of the song is when Fergie spells out ‘Glamorous.’ I think it’s because the more I drink, the more hopeful I am she may spell it incorrectly, and that would be really really funny. It’s disturbing that this song has such a power over me. Oh well.

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Sue
“Temperature” — Sean Paul

It’s fun, kinda tropical and always reminds me of summer. While I usually hate dance-pop reggae, this song slips under my radar, probably because I can still understand the words. Close runners-up include “Kokomo,” for its associations with my guilty pleasure movie, Cocktail, as well as Britney Spears’ new song, “Dance Until The World Ends.” Suffice it to say, Britney is back with this one. She may still have dead eyes in every photo I see, but its a really fun song.

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Erin Petrie
“Cotton Eye Joe” — Rednex

I’m not even sure if this song is played anywhere but weddings (I don’t get out much), but it is physically impossible for me to resist getting up and dancing to Rednex’s infectious dance cover of the old country folk song. I am completely ashamed to admit I know all the words and enjoy this song (it’s even shameful to type out the group name Rednex), but it is just catchy and so so so much fun to dance to. And it’s a dance I know, so I don’t look like a rhythmically challenged fool when I’m out on the dance floor (or do I?).

Founded in September 2009, The Pop Break is a digital pop culture magazine that covers film, music, television, video games, books and comics books and professional wrestling.