Tag Archive | "music"

Spartans on Spotify: Campus Commute Groove

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Spartans on Spotify: Campus Commute Groove

Running out of songs to listen to on your daily campus commute? Whether you walk, ride your bike or take the bus, here’s a list of some jams to listen to during your trek across Michigan State University’s beautiful campus. Follow us on Spotify at TheBigGreenMSU to stay up to date with our latest playlists!

Photo courtesy of Ursula O'Connor.

Photo courtesy of Ursula O’Connor.

1. “Here Comes the Sun” – The Beatles

What better song to walk to your 8 a.m. than this one?

2. “I’m Doin’ My Thing” – Gramatik

Keep doin’ your thing.

3. “Where Is The Love?” – The Black Eyed Peas

Thoughts that cross your mind when you see how angry everyone looks on their way to class.

4. “Billionaire” – Travie McCoy & Bruno Mars

The reminder of why you shouldn’t skip “CEM 141” today.

5. “Clint Eastwood” – Gorillaz

You can’t help bobbing your head to this one, even if it looks weird to those people across from you on the CATA bus.

6. “Day ‘N’ Night” – Kid Cudi

The relaxing vibes from this song will keep you (somewhat) calm when you just left Akers at 10:15 a.m., you missed the bus and your 10:20 a.m. is at Berkey.

7. “When I Come Around” – Green Day

Try and tell me that you don’t feel like you’re in a 90s punk music video when this song comes on.

8. “Shut Up and Dance” – WALK THE MOON

And now this song is stuck in your head for the rest of the day.

9. “Like Toy Soldiers” – Eminem

“Left right left we all fall down…” on the couch once we get home from a long day on campus.

10. “Ain’t It Fun” – Paramore

No, Hayley Williams, it’s not fun walking around campus all day. But, it could always be worse; you could live in Ann Arbor.

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Spartan’s on Spotify: Spring Break Road Trippin’ Tunes

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Spartan’s on Spotify: Spring Break Road Trippin’ Tunes

Photo via Rene Kiss.

Photo via Rene Kiss.

Driving to your spring break destination and you’ve run out of songs to add to your road trip playlist? The Big Green compiled a list of road trippin’ songs just for you. We even added a few extra so you’ve got tunes for miles!

1. “Wake Me Up” – Avicii

For the people who plan on sleeping the whole way to the destination.

2. “Sugar We’re Goin’ Down” – Fall Out Boy

Okay let’s be real: who doesn’t sing this song as loudly as possible?

3. “Dani California” – Red Hot Chili Peppers

Red Hot Chili Peppers’ low-tempo vibes are perfect for riding in the car, especially on a sunny day!

4. “Jumper” – Third Eye Blind

And I bet you still know all the lyrics to this one!

5. “Roses” – The Chainsmokers

Featuring Elizabeth Roze Mencel, this song is number nine on Billboard’s Hot 100 as of Feb. 28.

6. “My Own Worst Enemy” – Lit

Please tell my why…we’re not there yet?

7. “Fun, Fun Fun” – The Beach Boys

‘Til your daddy takes the T-bird away.

8. “Sexual Healing” – Marvin Gaye (Kygo Remix)

Kygo released this remix in 2014 and since then, it’s gained 24.1 million listens! It’s a great feel-good song for a road trip.

9. “Good Time” – Owl City ft. Carly Rae Jepsen

You don’t even have to try…

10. “Home” – Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros

Whether you’re driving home or not, it’s hard not to move your head to this one.

11. “A Thousand Miles” – Vanessa Carlton

Because at this point, you’ll feel like you’ve been driving that long.

12. “Life is a Highway” – Rascal Flatts

You were probably expecting this song would be on here. You were right.

13. “Young Blood” – The Naked and Famous

This song by the New Zealand indie-electronic band is a perfect song to get you through those last miles.

14. “What I Got” – Sublime

This list wouldn’t be complete without a little bit of Sublime.

15. “Under Pressure” – David Bowie and Queen

This is our last dance. You made it!

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Spartans on Spotify: Workout Beats

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Spartans on Spotify: Workout Beats

Trying to stay true to that New Year’s resolution but sick of listening to the same songs during each workout? The Big Green compiled a playlist perfect for hitting the gym! Follow us at TheBigGreenMSU on Spotify to keep up to date with our latest themed playlists.

1. ‘Til I Collapse – Eminem

This song is sure to keep you motivated and working hard…’til you collapse.

2. Funk Party – GRiZ

This upbeat song is perfect for keeping you moving on the treadmill or elliptical.Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

3. X Gon’ Give It To Ya – DMX

Finance senior Kevin McCoy says this is his favorite song to work out to due to it’s motivational lyrics and beat.

4. Get Back – Ludacris

Spending most of your time hitting the heavy bag? This tune will put you in the zone!

5. Can’t Hold Us (ft. Ray Dalton) – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

This song landed number seven on Spotify’s most popular workout songs in 2014!

6. Memories (ft. Kid Cudi) – David Guetta

This song’s high tempo makes it one of the best to run to.

7. Run It! – Chris Brown

Throwing it back to 2005 with this one!

8. All I Do Is Win – DJ Khaled

This is a self-motivating, up-tempo song, which is why we’ve included it at number eight on the list!

9. Dedicated To The Service – Manic Focus

There’s no better way to wrap up your workout than by slowing it down with this Manic Focus song.

10. Invincible – Machine Gun Kelly

This slower tempo song is a perfect way to finish off a great workout!

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Spartans on Spotify: Study Session

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Spartans on Spotify: Study Session

Photo via Creative Commons.

Photo via Creative Commons.

Is the fact that finals are right around the corner stressing you out? Do you need something to help you relax and stay focused on studying at the same time? Have no fear, The Big Green is here with our monthly playlist to help you get through these next few weeks of studying! As always, don’t forget to follow us on Spotify at TheBigGreenMSU.

1. The Way – Emancipator

This could’ve been a whole playlist of Emancipator, due to the calming nature of their songs.

2. Bittersweet Symphony – The Verve

The repetition of this song’s melody is sure to keep you focused on studying.

3. Fall in Love Too Fast – GRiZ

With that old-school classical vibe and the saxophone solos, GRiZ offers a ton of chill tunes to help you on that study grind.

4. All We Need (feat. Shy Girls) – ODESZA

It was hard to pick just one ODESZA song, when almost all of them have that dreamy, laid back vibe.

5. Gravity – John Mayer

Not much can beat the amazing combination of Mayer’s smooth voice and soothing guitar.

6. You Wish – Nightmares on Wax

“Sometimes I get a good feeling” that this song is perfect for a study session.

7. Float On – Modest Mouse

This song might be a little more upbeat, but it has a positive uplifting message that is perfect for the hecticness of finals – when times get tough we just float on.

8. Sleeping Sickness – City and Colour

Leave it to Dallas Green to keep you concentrated on finishing that final paper you’ve been procrastinating.

9. Pachuca Sunrise – Minus the Bear

The indie-rock band from Seattle makes so many great songs for studying, it was hard to put just one on this list!

10. Takin’ It To The Max (feat. Branx and Jesus) – Exmag

Take your studying to the max with this song!

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The Undisputed Underground: Unsung Heroes

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The Undisputed Underground: Unsung Heroes

In this corner, weighing in at 234 square miles and armed to the brim with proverbial wit and pulsating cadences is the powerhouse of the Midwest’s spoken word scene: Chiiiiiiiiicagooooooo!

It has long since been acknowledged that Chicago steadily brews greatness in the form of new age rap over enchantingly rhythmic beats. Praised artists such as Kanye West, Lupe Fiasco, Chief Keef and Vic Mensa, to name a few, have managed to manipulate Chicago’s unforgiving class mobility to catapult themselves into the limelight. Understanding that success stories of such an elevated scale are conceivable among the ranks of the city’s artists, it begs a question: Which contender will be the next sensation?

At the end of a consultation with my good friend Jake Millan, an 18-year-old Chicago resident currently at the launch of his music management career, a couple notions became apparent. Primarily, Chicago continues to bloom with a unique cultural capital. Furthermore, there is never a lack of creative representatives willing to take hold of the rap reigns in order to point the spotlight on this capital.

Utilizing the knowledge acquired from Millan concerning Chicago’s rap underground, compiling a brief list of the up-and-coming individual and group performers on the brink of a breakthrough became a cake walk. Moreover, be warned that the work of these attributed artists may be too raunchy for the taste of some.

So, without further adieu, the remainder of this article will contain a list of these musicians of interest.

Jake Millan with Eck$

Jake Millan (on left) with Lucki Eck$. Photo courtesy of Millan.


The 197 movement is one that has recently been exposed to heightened popularity credited to its front man Lucki Eck$.

Eck$ considers himself a very superstitious man, hence the name, and departed some revised wisdom to Millan after a stroll through his West Side neighborhood.

“You know the saying step on a crack break your mommas back? Well, out here it’s step on a crack get shot at later,” said Eck$ perfectly encapsulating the trials and tribulations the average Chicagoan may face on a day to day basis.

Eck$ sagacity can correspondingly be heard flowing through his musical vibrancy which grants insight into the hard terrain that 197 and similar artists have to combat to achieve their desired respect.

Despite the aforementioned difficulties Eck$ faces, he manages to reflect a positive perspective while still delving into the finer things of life: sex, drugs and money. For a more in depth illustration of this inimitable approach to rap, listen to Lucki Eck$ self aware “Love It.”

$ike (left), Millan (right). Photo courtesy of Millan.

$ike (on left) with Millan. Photo courtesy of Millan.

$ike, another avid contributor to the 197 movement may follow in Lucki Eck$ footsteps. Nevertheless, $ike is capable of delivering his own powerful sermons through an array of styles all while exuding confidence.

He is arguably the runner up to 197’s throne and shows many promising features that, if brandished correctly, will carry him far in the music industry. To catch a glimpse of $ike’s harmonic preaching check out his theatrical refrain “Tesla.”

Hurt Everybody

Composed by members Carl, 19, Supa Bwe, 25, and Mulatto Beats, 20, Hurt Everybody prefers to flaunt “malicious” personas on stage whose energetic tracks pack a violent punch to the audience’s eardrums.

Yet, off-stage, these guys have a reputation of being some of the more kind-hearted, genuine people Chicago has to offer; which explains why their adopted brawny personas are often transparent. It is safe to say that at times their name precedes them…at times.

Hurt Everybody has amassed plenty of attention lately and they have found that their rise to fame has arrived in the company of its share of envious cretins. These low-lifers are not afraid to hurdle racial slurs at the affiliates of Hurt Everybody whose response is usually to physically retaliate.

As witnessed on occasion by Millan, Supa Bwe has dropped his mic to allow his fists to do the talking.

This instance of artists defending their urbanity at all costs sheds light on the solidarity of cultural capital in Chicago and the robust ties this capital has to these rapper’s musical attributes. Additionally, proving that Hurt Everybody can remain so humbled while backing their bark up with their bite is just another reason why they deserve this growth in recognition.

To instil a burst of adrenaline, listen to Hurt Everybody’s rabid “2k47.”

Lux Money Gang

Lux Money Gang (LMG), originating from the South Side of Chicago, consists of two young entertainers who consistently lambast their competitors and have also bestowed upon me a night of ethnic involvement I will not soon forget.

Mid summer of 2015, I was privileged with attending an art and fashion show in downtown Chicago. The small venue was packed wall to wall with an eager audience (the majority of which were Kenwood High students and family) awaiting the debut of amateur clothing lines between swift sets executed by slam poets, rappers and vocalists.

From left to right: Iggy, Millan and OT. Photo courtesy of Millan.

From left to right: Iggy, Millan and OT. Photo courtesy of Millan.

This social expedition was paramount to me on account of, for the first time in my life, converting to the racial minority. In junction to this excitement of novelty, I was enthralled to observe first hand how amidst performers OT and Iggy, the partners who make up LMG, were able to stand out and captivate the room.

LMG is a group where passion fuels their ambition, as opposed to money or fame. When they get up in front of an audience and belt out a couple well-rounded stanzas, it is so blatant that they are loving every second that they get to share their gift of music with a crowd.

That being said, as they continue to cascade fans with a barrage of new music releases, it is evident that money and fame will be abundant between OT and Iggy.

While it wont go so far as to immerse you in the culture shock I felt, any one of LMG’s published songs will be sure to get you on the bandwagon. Check out their SoundCloud.

So, if these artists are collecting all this notoriety, why are they considered unsung?

These entertainers have gathered a more than decent fan base in Chicago, but outside of the city’s borders finding someone who knows their names would be a hard-pressing task despite their deserving talent. Undeniable is the impact that these figures can inflict on us through melodic revelations and, foreign to most, Chicago acumen; for instance, heeding Lucki Eck$ lesson, Millan still avoids cracks in the pavement to this day.

I encourage you to spread the work of these men who have poured their heart and soul into making every track a succulent masterpiece for their devotees, and to always be aware of the local talent whether it is here in East Lansing or wherever you call home. We can only hope these artists are on the verge of earning their homage.

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Spartans on Spotify: Halloween Hits

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Spartans on Spotify: Halloween Hits

Halloween is here and The Big Green put together a few spooky tunes to get everyone in the holiday spirit! Don’t forget to follow us at TheBigGreenMSU on Spotify to keep up to date with our latest themed playlists. Happy Halloween!

Rene pumpkins1. Let the Bodies Hit the Floor – Activator

Activator threw a modern electronic spin on an old heavy metal song by Drowning Pool

2. Thriller – Michael Jackson

Let’s be honest, who doesn’t love to get down to some M.J. every once in awhile?

3. Disturbia – Rihanna

It might be one of the two songs on this playlist that are from this decade, but that doesn’t take away from the freaky nature of this hit song.

4. Superstition – Stevie Wonder

It’s almost impossible not to get the funk down to this popular Motown original.

5. Magic Dance – David Bowie

Whether you’ve seen The Labyrinth or not, there’s no denying that Bowie’s eccentricity and bizarreness embody the spirit of Halloween.

6. Ghostbusters – Ray Parker, Jr.

“Who you gonna call?”

7. Monster Mash – Bobby Pickett

It might be cliché, but would it really be a Halloween playlist without this song?

8. Witch Doctor – David Seville

The childhood nostalgia is strong with this one.

9. Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) – Eurythmics

There’s something in the melody of this song that has “eerie” written all over it.

10. Banana Boat Song (Day-O) – Harry Belafonte

Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice!

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GRiZ brings new style to the future of EDM

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GRiZ brings new style to the future of EDM

GRiZ (left) playing with producer Gramatik (right) in Milwaukee on Oct. 31, 2014.

GRiZ (left) playing with producer Gramatik (right) in Milwaukee on Oct. 31, 2014.

As electronic dance music (EDM) continues to dominate today’s music scene, there is a whole subculture of artists and listeners within EDM who are fueled by funk and soul music that has a spin of modern electronic music to it.

This scene is said to have various different titles but there hasn’t quite been one that correctly justifies it due to the fact that there are so many sub-genres incorporated into it. However, many can agree that the term ‘future funk’ fits the standard.

Inside the future funk scene, funk and soul are now being crossbred with different combinations of electronic music and hip-hop beats.

Grant Kwiecinski, the saxophone wielding, Detroit-area producer/musician who has taken his illustrious alter ego, GRiZ, from the local Lansing bar scene to sold out shows across the nation at the tender age of 25, has become one of the frontrunners of the electro-funk world.

GRiZ attended Michigan State University for a few years before dropping out to pursue a career in music. He started out DJing at fraternity and co-op parties. He eventually started playing bigger shows at Mac’s Bar in Lansing.

“It started taking off from there,” GRiZ told electroniccurrent.com. “And posting on SoundCloud became like the next thing.”

SoundCloud is where GRiZ makes all of his music available to download for free. This is perhaps one of the biggest reasons why GRiZ is unique compared to many artists. All of his music is free.

“Now, you know we don’t do this for the money, for the fame, for the power. We do s**t for the love. We do s**t for the people. And I would never ever change that down to my heart and my very soul,” GRiZ said on stage at one of his recent shows.

There’s a freedom in GRiZ’s music that allows for growth while not committing himself to one genre. GRiZ has been packing shows along the electronic music party circuit and playing festivals like Coachella, Electric Forest and Lollapalooza, among many others, showcasing his unique stage show.

His live sets, which feature himself on the saxophone, a variety of controllers, a computer and accompanied guitarist, friend and Michigan-native Muzzy Bearr, bring a distinctive edge to GRiZ not seen much with most electronic artists who solely depend on electronic gadgets for their shows.

This summer GRiZ put on two small impromptu shows, GRiZmas in July Part I and II. Part I was on July 15 at Bookie’s Rooftop in Detroit, Mich., and Part II was held at Mac’s Bar in Lansing, Mich. Due to the fact that the shows had approximately a 200-person capacity, they were low key and personal. In fact, Kwiecinski himself sold all 200 tickets himself at the Lansing venue.

Kyle Robinson, MSU senior packaging major, was one of the lucky 200 people to get a ticket to GRiZmas Part II.

“It was a lot of fun, not a lot of people I knew were there and he played more of a DJ set,” Robinson said. “It was really cool to see him in such a small setting and he personally sold the tickets at the door.”

Robinson has been listening to GRiZ since 2012 and believes that since then, the producer has “made a major step towards funk with the saxophone and sound in general.”

Not only is Kwiecinski a producer and musician, but he is also an entrepreneur who started his own record label, All Good Records.

Other producers who are signed with All Good Records include Manic Focus of Saint Paul, Minn.,The Floozies of Lawrence, Kan., The Geek x VRV of Paris, France, Muzzy Bearr of Detroit, Mich., Freddy Todd of Southfield, Mich. and as of Oct. 7, Sunsquabi of Boulder, Colo. These artists also produce electro-soul music, each with their own unique twist.

GRiZ and the All Good Records family played a sold out showcase at the Red Rocks Amphitheater in Morrison, Colo. on Sept. 4.

“This is what it looks like to play music in front of 10,000 people…aka the best night of my life,” GRiZ posted as the caption to the official recap video of the Red Rocks show. “I cannot thank you all enough for the love.”

Ian Paulsen, sophomore political science-pre law and psychology major, has been listening to GRiZ for a little over a year now. He considers the first time that he heard a GRiZ song, which happened to be “Better Than I’ve Ever Been,” a track on the artist’s sophomore album “Mad Liberation,” an eye-opening experience.

“All I can say is that he is making a difference; they all are. People who make music, do it for more than the fame and money. They make music to help people like us; people that feel completely free with the headphones in and the dance moves flowing,” said Paulsen.

GRiZ hit the road on Sept. 30 for his nationwide tour, “The Super Shagadelic Tour.” His next Michigan show, GRiZmas II, is on Dec. 19 at the Masonic Temple in Detroit, Mich. Tickets can be purchased on ticketmaster.com.

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Album Review: Mac Miller’s “GO:OD AM” and Lana Del Rey’s “Honeymoon”

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Album Review: Mac Miller’s “GO:OD AM” and Lana Del Rey’s “Honeymoon”

“GO:OD AM” – Mac Miller

After dropping his singles “100 Grandkids,” “Break The Law” and “Clubhouse,” Mac Miller released his third studio album titled “GO:OD AM” on Sept. 18.

This Pittsburgh born and raised rapper is known for his many mixtapes including “K.I.D.S.” and “Faces.” The sound that listeners are used to hearing from Miller is usually sampled beats and carefree lyrics. “GO:OD AM” gives listeners a different, more mature sound through 17 tracks.

Mac Miller at NYC Governor's Ball in 2011.

Mac Miller at NYC Governor’s Ball in 2011.

Starting off the album slow with “Doors,” Miller follows that beat with “Break The Law” and “Rush Hour,” these songs open your ears to his lyrics against smooth rap beats.

His lyrics throughout “GO:OD AM” speak about the real world and what he has learned throughout life. He is telling listeners who he is as a rapper, and that “there ain’t nothing wrong with a little bit of fun.”

Some artists you would not expect to be featured on his album include Ab-Soul and Little Dragon. But, most surprisingly, Chief Keef  in “Cut The Check”, and Miguel in “Weekend.” Even though each artist has different styles, they managed to sound well together throughout the songs.

If you are looking to bump the bass in your car, “In The Bag” and “When In Rome” are the ideal songs for that. If you are looking for the softer side of Miller, “ROS” would be the perfect song.

Overall, this album shows the grown-up side of Miller, but still includes hints of the familiar sounds we are used to. “GO:OD AM” is the perfect album to listen to on those morning bus rides to ensure not only a good morning, but a good day.


“Honeymoon” – Lana Del Rey

Lana Del Rey has written many songs in her 30 years of life. Her more mainstream album with a hip-hop sound “Born To Die,” and her guitar filled album “Ultraviolence,” give you a good perception of Del Rey. But, “Honeymoon,” which was also released on Sept. 18, digs a little deeper into Del Rey’s true self.

Lana Del Rey performing at Irving Plaza in 2012.

Lana Del Rey performing at Irving Plaza in 2012.

The first of 14 songs is the title track “Honeymoon,” you hear the softer, more sad side of Del Rey. The familiar sound is also heard in “Terrace Loves You.”

From deep, sad sounds, you begin to hear more hip-hop, sultry tunes in the sixth and seventh tracks “Freak” and “Art Deco.” She also includes a more mainstream sound with “High By The Beach,” which was one of her singles for “Honeymoon.”

While showing off her more romantic side with this album through her own life experiences, Del Rey also expresses herself with a cover of Nina Simone’s “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood.” Also, Del Rey recites part of a poem by T. S. Eliot in “Burnt Norton (Interlude).

Her original sound definitely shows through “Honeymoon” with amazing range and soothing sirens. Del Rey also performs great harmonizing over orchestra tunes throughout the album.

Del Rey has not released “Honeymoon” tour dates yet. You can purchase this album on iTunes for $12.99 or on her website for $12.98. Her new album is also available to listen to on Spotify.


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Music Recap: Chance The Rapper and Hoodie Allen

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Music Recap: Chance The Rapper and Hoodie Allen

Throwback! Chance The Rapper and special guest Hoodie Allen took the stage at the MSU Auditorium on April 28. The event was organized by the MSU Residence Halls Association.

Keep an eye out for performers coming to East Lansing during the 2015-2016 academic year with the MSU University Activites Board and the MSU Residence Halls Association.

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Spartans on Spotify: Tailgate Tunes

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Spartans on Spotify: Tailgate Tunes

Photo Courtesy of: Tanner Trombley

Photo Courtesy of: Tanner Trombley

Hey everyone, Rene here! Spartans on Spotify is a monthly column in which I’ll be providing a themed playlist of songs across all genres and fit for any Spartan. In addition to posting the song list on here, you can listen along on The Big Green’s Spotify account. Follow us at TheBigGreenMSU to stay up to date with all of our monthly playlists!

This month’s theme: Tailgate Tunes the perfect mix to please all crowds at any tailgate or pregame.

1.  Type of Way – Rich Homie Quan

This one kind of speaks for itself. Nothing quite says “Spartan Football” like the anthem of our beloved team the year that we won the Rose Bowl in 2014.

2. 7/11 – Beyonce

Let’s face it – everyone can get down to some Beyonce Knowles. She’s a crowd pleaser and a must have in any pregame playlist.

3. Can’t Feel My Face – The Weeknd

Once you hear it, you can’t get it out of your head.

4. Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars

It might be overplayed, but that’s for a good reason: this song makes people want to move no matter how much they try not to.

5. Get Low – Lil Jon & The Eastside Boyz

Yes, we’ve heard it over and over again at any given gathering, but it’s still as great as it was when you were in the sixth grade and heard it for the first time.

6. Come On Eileen – Dexys Midnight Runners

It might not be as well known to the vast majority, but there’s something about this song that fits perfectly into any tailgate.

7. Roses – OutKast

Let’s be real, everyone loves a throwback.

8. I Don’t F*** With You – Big Sean

Not only is this song catchy, but it definitely gets the crowd hyped up about crushing whichever team the Spartans are about to defeat.

9. Ignition Remix – R Kelly

This is another one of those songs that we all heard in middle school, which is one of the reasons why this is an obvious crowd favorite.

10. Sweet Caroline – Neil Diamond

Only the best for last. It’s remarkable that this song was released in 1969 and yet at any given pregame, you’ll find yourself singing the chorus at the top of your lungs – “Good times never seemed so good (so good, so good, so good).”

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