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The Billboard primary hit for all of 1999 was the autotuned dance-pop hit “Imagine” by Cher. Simply earlier than the flip of the millennium, different high musical hits included Will Smith’s musical accompaniment to his nonsensical summer time blockbuster “Wild Wild West,” and the breakout singles of each Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera with “Child One Extra Time” and “Genie in a Bottle” respectively. It was an enormous yr for TLC, whose “No Scrubs” and “Unpretty” each held the primary spot, whereas Ricky Martin and Enrique Iglesias introduced Latin music to the cultural zeitgeist with “Livin’ La Vida Loca” and “Bailamos.” The yr ended with Carlos Santana’s return to industrial success with a completely totally different era because of his single “Easy” with Rob Thomas from Matchbox Twenty and collaborations with many different standard artists on the 1999 album Supernatural.
With a brand new millennium looming, it was a time of transition on and off the charts.
On Sept. 29, 1999, the highest single on the Billboard charts in North America was “Unpretty” by TLC. That very same day, Tony Hawk’s Professional Skater was launched for the Sony PlayStation by Activision. It boasted a pop-punk-rock soundtrack that was barely extra punk than pop, introducing a whole era to the likes of the Lifeless Kennedys.
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Very similar to the fashion around skateboarding on the time, music was additionally a big a part of skateboarding tradition – significantly as skateboarding made its transition all through the 90s from vertical to avenue. Tony Hawk’s Professional Skater dragged these songs from the underground into ticky-tacky dwelling rooms within the little bins of suburbia. It could not have been the purpose from the outset, however just like the streetwear and act of skateboarding itself, it ended up being the result.
The final consensus is that the one tune that defines Tony Hawk’s Professional Skater is Goldfinger’s “Superman.” Off of their 1997 album Hold-Ups, “Superman” featured Reel Massive Fish’s Scott Klopfenstein and Dan Regan on the trumpet and trombone, giving it extra of an upbeat ska really feel and persevering with in a collaborative custom with California ska artists began from their self-titled debut album “Goldfinger” in 1996.
“Superman” is the monitor that anybody who performed Professional Skater for hours on finish listens to for optimum sepia-tinged suburban nostalgia. Once more, this wasn’t doubtless the meant consequence, however right here we’re over 20 years later and it is the tune that has YouTube commenters to at the present time saying that they’d restart the sport time and again till it could queue up once more to ensure that them to hit their subsequent score-topping run. It is the form of music that introduced upper-middle-class highschool children like myself on an impromptu drive from Studying, Mass. to Hampton Seaside’s On line casino Ballroom to see Reel Massive Fish in live performance (on a weekday no much less, sacrilege to my extremely strict dad and mom).
But, it is the Lifeless Kennedys B-side Might 1980 single “Police Truck” that is the crowning achievement of this soundtrack, essentially the most controversial decide on the time for Lifeless Kennedys followers and detractors alike, and a tune that is remarkably prescient.
The A-side single “Vacation in Cambodia,” a direct commentary on Western capitalist existence of college college students on the time, managed to make it into Guitar Hero years later together with “California Über Alles.” The juxtaposition between the lyrics and message of “Vacation in Cambodia” and Guitar Hero as a industrial product for kids and youngsters is fascinating to say the least, conjuring up imagines of tweens singing “It is a vacation in Cambodia/It is powerful, child, nevertheless it’s life/It is a vacation in Cambodia/Do not forget to pack a spouse” amongst different lyrical and unsubtle gems.
“Police Truck” is an equally unsubtle anti-capitalist call-out of American police brutality. Its inclusion on Professional Skater angered Lifeless Kennedys followers who felt it went towards the band’s beliefs and message. The overwhelming reputation of Professional Skater introduced this particular tune and some different punk choices to extra industrial house the place they arguably did not belong very similar to skateboarding itself.
Authenticity is unattainable when commercialism enters the fray and but, Professional Skater was oddly poised on a precipice between the 2 upon launch, with the soundtrack and aesthetic leaning in direction of the previous. Simply over 20 years have handed because the launch of Tony Hawk’s Professional Skater. On Sept. 4, 2020, the remastered Professional Skater 1 + 2 will launch, the Billboard high single will doubtless nonetheless be BTS’ “Dynamite” (which is a completely totally different and extremely worthwhile music dialog to be having), and the Lifeless Kennedys “Police Truck” continues to be as related as ever..
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