Will the Kitty playlists will tell you how old I am?

May 31, 2011

Usually when I put together the playlist for a Kitty book, I end up thinking, “Dang, that’s a lot of 80’s songs, I should branch out a little.”  The playlist for Kitty 10, Kitty Steals the Show, seemed particularly excessive.  (Pet Shop Boys and Adam Ant and Dexy’s Midnight Runners?  Really?)  It’s really clear what decade I grew up in, and therefore how old I am (about).  Or is it?

I finally decided I wanted to know for sure:  exactly how excessive is my use of songs from the 80’s on the Kitty playlists?  The 11 playlists (ten novels and the collection) have 146 different songs on them, and by my count roughly 60 of them are from the 80’s.  That’s 41%.  Not quite half, which actually surprised me.  I thought I might get to fully half.  The most 80’s songs on one playlist is 8 (Kitty Goes to Washington), and the fewest is 2 (Kitty Goes to War).  (Disclaimer — my count may be off on some of these.  I didn’t look up the dates on every song, so bands like the Pretenders and the Clash may have gotten counted as 80’s when the specific song was actually late 70’s.  Can we call them 80’s in spirit?)

So there you go.  Not as excessive as I feared, but still a definite trend.  No one can listen to that much Clash and Oingo Boingo and not have grown up in the 80’s.

11 Responses to “Will the Kitty playlists will tell you how old I am?”

  1. Adam. Says:

    I don’t know about being skewed to 80s music, but of the bands you listed in your post The Pretenders are a pretty good cross section all by themselves.

    Which is to say that both The Pretenders and the list as a whole are “mostly British”.

    If you’re looking to gauge your influences it looks like we need to know if “British” can manage more than 41%.

  2. LupLun Says:

    There’s nothing wrong with 80’s music. Well, at least so long as you stay away from hair metal and bubblegum pop.

    But you know, if you’re seriously concerned about it, just expose yourself to newer music. Find a new radio station that plays more recent songs. Or hit VEVO looking for soundtrack material.

  3. carriev Says:

    Not worried, just making an observation.

  4. Roxanne Says:

    I’m in denial about my age and I see no problem about that. I’m 29 with a few years experience.

    Music wise? The 80’s had the best music. I’ll stand by that. I’ll stand by that with a baseball bat for anyone who disagrees. Well, at least for new wave, goth, early industrial.

    90’s music?
    Grunge…meh, and I’m from Seattle.
    Hip-hop? meh.
    Boy bands and girl bands? bleah.

    And ++cool on Oingo Boingo. Seeing them play at my school was epic.

  5. Vickie B Says:

    80s wave, 80s tune-age in general was fun! At least that’s what I remember. I was in my first decade in the Air Force in the 80s and listening to the tunes on my mp3 player now, I have fond memories roaring in as I listen to what makes up quite a bit on my player.
    So, rock on Kitty, rock on!

  6. Patricia Mathews Says:

    Besides which, what decade did *Kitty* grow up in? Eh?

  7. Jakk Says:

    I am about 5 years older than you, give or take a year or 2, so i have very similar music tastes in 80s music. The songs you pick out are usually favorites of mine. Like what you like, and don’t ponder it too much.

  8. Thomas Says:

    Hehe… Now just imagine if you had actual playlists for all of your books and/or short stories.

    I like a lot of 80s music myself, but I was exposed to it after the fact without even realizing when a lot of the songs were originally written. I was barely three and a half when the 80s ended.

    Most of my music collection is made up of New Age/Celtic/Folk music as well as soundtracks (TV or movie) and various Metal or Rock music, including a lot of the 80s music/bands. Keep listening to what you like and inspires you, Carrie!

  9. carriev Says:

    Kitty probably technically grew up mostly in the 90’s — that’s when she would have been a teenager. But she also has an older sister whom she idolized, who grew up in the 80’s, and I’ve decided (since I’m the author and I can do that) her sister inadvertantly determined a lot of her tastes.

  10. Anju Says:

    I’d agree that it doesn’t necessarily give away your or Kitty’s age. It is a neat way of adding to the character, though. Thinking about it, I’m not sure how often we learn about characters’ musical tastes.

  11. Steve Wheelock Says:

    If Kitty’s Playlist had songs like “It’s the Girl” by the Boswell Sisters (1931), “In the Still of the Nite” by the Five Satins, “Bip Bop Boom” by Mickey Hawks (1958), etc., your readers might start to wonder to put it mildly. If it’s 1980’s music you like, then go with your heart.


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