90s Pop Songs: A Hump Day of Nostalgia and Melancholia

90s Pop Songs: A Hump Day of Nostalgia and Melancholia
20th September 2023 Elena
90s Pop Songs: A Hump Day of Nostalgia and Melancholia

Nostalgia is “a feeling of pleasure and slight sadness when you think about things that happened in the past” (Cambridge Dictionary). What if that past means listening to a full playlist of the 80s, 90s, and 00s pop songs?

We don’t know if it’s hump day or the fact that we’re halfway into September, but we’ve searched our collection of playlists and found this jewel of nostalgia and melancholia.

90s Pop Songs Playlist: Handpicked Nostalgia and Melancholia

This 90s pop songs playlist includes tracks from 90s movies, TV shows, and series that’ll make the rest of the week seem like nothing!

You can either start listening to this playlist from beginning to end or read through our handpicked 90s pop songs that may result in a tear or two.

“Kiss Me” by Sixpence None The Richer

American pop-rock band Sixpence None the Richer released this late 90s pop song in 1998 on their self-titled album. It became a huge hit and we can guess what comes to mind as soon as you hear:

Kiss me, out of the bearded barley

Nightly, beside the green, green grass

Swing, swing, (swing, swing) swing the spinning step

You wear those shoes and I will wear that dress

That one lucky Rachel Reigh Cook walking down the stairs in that red dress while dreamy-eyed Freddie Prince Jr. can’t take his eyes off of her. She’s All That (1999) is that movie we’ve watched again and again hoping that high school was something like that.

“Wake Me Up When September Ends” by Green Day

American punk rock band Green Day included this early 2K pop song in their album American Idiot (2004) and has become one of Green Day’s most well-known tracks. We know it’s not exactly in the 90s but it blends well with September ending, so shush.

On a more serious note, Billie Joe Armstrong, lead vocalist and guitarist, wrote this song inspired by the death of his father:

Like my father’s come to pass

Seven years has gone so fast

Wake me up when September ends

This track was also used in A Walk to Remember (2002) by Nicholas Sparks, aka the king of romance. Then again, if you’ve watched the official video, starring Evan Rachel Wood and Jamie Bell, it’s very close to watching a full movie!

“Truly Madly Deeply” by Savage Garden

This track by Savage Garden is a love song that expresses deep and unwavering love and devotion. The lyrics express exactly the idea of being completely enamored and dedicated to someone, willing to be everything they need and want:

I wanna stand with you on a mountain

I wanna bathe with you in the sea

I wanna lay like this forever

Until the sky falls down on me

Are there any Dawson’s Creek (1998) fans in the building? If affirmative, you might remember this track from the first season, episode 9, titled “Roadtrip“.

“It Must Have Been Love” by Roxette

Richard Gere. Sigh. Julia Roberts. Sigh. Prostitutes that fall in love with billionaires. Every Christmas. This popular track by the Swedish pop duo Roxette was written by Per Gessle, one-half of Roxette, and was originally released in 1987 as a Christmas single:

It must have been love, but it’s over now

It must have been good, but I lost it somehow

It must have been love, but it’s over now

From the moment we touched, ’til the time had run out

However, as we hinted already, it became more popular when it was featured in the Pretty Woman (1990) soundtrack. And, of course, which better track to tell a classic love story? Well, maybe not classic per se…

“Bitch” by Meredith Brooks

Who here has tried to sing the full chorus without having to stop for air? No? Go for it:

I’m a bitch, I’m a lover

I’m a child, I’m a mother

I’m a sinner, I’m a saint

I do not feel ashamed

I’m your Hell, I’m your dream

I’m nothing in between

You know you wouldn’t want it any other way

This 90s pop song by singer-songwriter Meredith Brooks was released as the lead single in her debut album Blurring the Edges (1997). It became a major hit and is still considered Brooks’ signature song. In fact, it earned her a Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance.

It must be said that as an unapologetic and straightforward anthem, it was included in that movie where Mel Gibson can read women’s minds and finally gift a few women on Earth with orgasms, aka What Women Want (2000).

“Only When I Sleep” by The Corrs

One of our personal favs! The Corrs released one of the major hits of 90s pop songs as the lead single in Talk on Corners (1997). Did anyone else break the CD from so many listens?

But it’s only when I sleep

See you in my dreams

Got me spinning round and round

Turning upside down

But I only hear you breathe

Somewhere in my sleep

Got me spinning round and round

Turning upside down

But it’s only when I sleep

The clip contributed to its fame as it received airplay on innumerable music television channels. This would become the first step to humanity becoming obsessed with that blend of folk and Celtic influences.


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