Music that Rocked My Childhood

I kind of don’t want to share which artists I loved as a kid but here I am writing this so… but hey you may have liked them too.

I thought we’d take a break from kpop and cpop and go back to the late 90s and early 00s to see what young Gift was into. As I’m Black British my music taste from back then reflects that. We have so many good artists here and I feel like people forget that and only look to America. There is more to the world of music than America.

Having said that, let’s start with the only American on my list:


I love this woman.

She stood for animal rights (still stands for it) and her music had meaning. The earliest songs I remember are the ones I heard when I first moved to the UK way back when so she has a special place in my heart.

She made songs that were emotional and really got me thinking, like Family Portrait and songs about beauty standards and the pressure put on women like Stupid Girls and Perfect. Then the songs that came for men’s throats like U + Ur Hand… this song still gives me so much joy, especially now that I understand it better. Then her fun songs like Get this Party Started and Trouble, oooh and remember God is a DJ? That song had me sitting there like I was doing a math equation as I tried to work it out.

So yeah Pink has a song for everything. I love that she’s for women, she’s emotionally intelligent and she has a bomb voice.

I mean for ages and for no reason Who Knew was in my head and that song… ugh! It gets to me.


Let’s move on to the sexiest group on my list…

Scissor Sisters

I love them! They are so fun and were so big in England I genuinely thought they were British. I recently googled them and *gasp* they’re not! They’re American!

Their music spoke to a side of my personality that I tried to deny. They were just so free and fun, and I loved how they sang in a higher register.

Their song Filthy (Gorgeous) is the bomb. The music video was very inappropriate for young Gift but young Gift never saw it as you know censorship on UK TV before 9pm. So I’m guessing there’s a PG version of the mv because I know I saw some mv but I definitely didn’t see the uncensored one.

So yeah Scissor Sisters will always have a special place in my heart because their music just spoke to me and I am an alternative black girl and I didn’t feel like that was weird when listening to their music. I felt normal.


Finally from England is…

S Club 7

When I say they are my childhood I mean it! When they broke up I was so sad! It was the first heartbreak of my young life.

Their song Reach for the Stars was even the theme song for my primary school… I am not even joking we had a dance for it and everything. I mean it makes sense the song has a very good message that you’d want kids to follow.

They had many good songs and they were kid friendly and fun and the best… yes I am totally unbiased *looks away*.

My favourite song from them is Don’t Stop Moving… it just takes me there.


My first boy band…


In America it was NSYNC vs. Backstreet Boys (I liked Backstreet Boys) in the UK it was Blue vs. Westlife… I loved Blue.

I loved that they had someone who was black in their group. I remember thinking, finally! And their songs just hit.

I mean One Love, when they collabed with Elton John and sang Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word and All Rise? Forget about it!

They broke up when I was young but they went on tour when I was in university and I got to see them as they came to my Uni and ahh! It was the best night ever! I am so glad my friend in Belly Dancing Soc told me about the concert *whispers* thank you…

They are amazing live.


Stepping to Jamaica for a little bit because…

Sean Paul!

He killed it in the early 00’s and no one can deny that. He was on fire! Much like his song We Be Burin’.

He had so many good songs, Get Busy, Temperature, Like Glue and that song he did with Blu Cantrell Breathe… umm!

We even made a dance to Like Glue in primary school. I learned how to wine on Sean Paul songs in secondary school. He was the one.

I also loved how he showed black people killing dances and just having fun. I used to love watching his music videos just to learn new dance moves and to feel the joy of dancing.


Last but not least


Yes, I never got to listen to them when they were active or when Freddie Mercury was alive but when I was young they were still big. They still are big. They’ll probably be big forever.

When I was in primary school We will Rock You was a great song for when you wanted to get things done (which our teachers must have hated), make people hype or just for fun as it was a song with active actions.

But the first Queen song I ever heard was I Want to Break Free. I remember loving it because Freddie Mercury was hoovering and dressed in drag, as were the other members, but Freddie spoke to me the most. The song spoke to me too. I think everyone feels the emotions in the song from one time to another.

My favourite Queen songs are Bohemian Rhapsody, Somebody to Love and most of all Don’t Stop Me Now.


I also loved a lot of British house artists without knowing it was house music I was listening to. Like (You Got to) Show Me Love (Robin S.), Gypsy Woman (Crystal Waters) and Finally (Cece Peniston)… Yes I watched the BET stage where they all performed. I was mad hype!


Anyway that’s my childhood.

What songs and genres of music made your childhood?

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