Search icon


07th Sep 2015

Guilty Pleasures: Why there’s nothing wrong with loving cheesy pop

It's time to come clean...

Nooruddean Choudry

Music is a funny thing.

On the one hand it’s a deeply personal pleasure that transports you to your own private universe. On the other, it helps define you to the outside world.

The latter means we’re not always honest about the former. When reputation is at stake, you don’t always want to admit to secretly liking Taylor Swift.

It’s why students and middle-aged men alike wear t-shirts displaying their love for Joy Division or the Ramones, in spite of never owning one of their albums.

For men especially, music is one of those ice-breakers – like football or favourite TV shows – that helps forge groups and galvanise friendships.

Fundamental to that is the importance of credibility. You don’t want to seem uncool or be *that* d**khead who listens to the wrong radio station.

The thing is, you can’t help what you enjoy. And the kind of bubblegum pop that you’re meant to dismiss as the scourge of ‘proper’ music can be f**king excellent.

The chances are each of your mates has their secret favourite too. Not all music requires you to rock out with our c**k out, or sit there in quiet contemplation at the complexities of life.

Sometimes, it can just be…well, fun.

That’s why we’re having a pop amnesty in the JOE office. There’s nothing wrong with loving Morrissey and MMMBop; sometimes we’re in the mood for NWA, others we love a bit of Britney.

Here are a few of our guilty pleasures. Join us in removing the cloak of pretension and admitting yours…


Miami Sound Machine/Gloria Estefan – Dr. Beat (1984)


B*Witched – C’est La Vie (1998)


Fine Young Cannibals – She Drives Me Crazy (1989)


Mariah Carey – Dreamlover (1993)


Backstreet Boys – Everybody (Backstreet’s Back) (1996)


‘N Sync – Gone (2001)


Five – Keep on Movin’ (1999)


The Ataris – The Boys of Summer (2003)