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The Blue & Gold

The official newspaper of Chamblee High School, preserving the past for the future today!

The official newspaper of Chamblee High School, preserving the past for the future today!

The Blue & Gold

The official newspaper of Chamblee High School, preserving the past for the future today!

The Blue & Gold

Chamblee Students Replay 2023 With Their Favorite Music

Joseph Rodriguez’s album cover for “It’s Just Noise in Atlanta,” courtesy of Sydney Grove.

With 2023 coming to a close, there is much to recap from the past year, including the new favorite songs and albums of Chamblee’s students. Among Chamblee’s population, students have diverse tastes and share many of their favorite albums, artists, and songs.
To reflect on the year, some students chose an “anthem” or a song to recap their year.
“My anthem of last year was ‘Everybody’s Safe Until…’ by Paris, Texas. It was one of my most listened-to songs in 2023, and I would always listen to it during class changes,” said Joseph Rodriguez (‘24).

A screenshot of Joseph Rodriguez’s Spotify Wrapped from 2023.

Another student named a genre for the first and second half of last year to fit how he felt.
“[My anthem] kind of changed halfway through in the first part of the year. At first, it was more like a dream-pop kind of thing, like the Cocteau twins,” said Stephan Els (‘25). “Now, I would say it’s more similar to Car Seat Headrest and The Cure.”
In November of last year, Spotify released listeners’ yearly “Wrapped,” which releases your listening statistics with anything you listened to on the platform throughout the year summarized.
“Last year my Spotify Wrapped had ‘No Shame’ by 5 Seconds of Summer, ‘Bad Omens’ by ZAYN, ‘Mine’ by Taylor Swift, ‘Something Great’ by One Direction, and ‘Snooze’ by Sza,” said Maddie Tahtinen (‘25).
Those without Spotify are still able to look forward to similar events on competing platforms like Apple Music.
“I personally use Apple Music, and it has the yearly Replay. I definitely look forward to it each year because I like to see my listening statistics. One of my top artists last year was Alex G. I really like his music,” said Becker Quinn (‘26).
One student has stayed consistent in his music taste for a few years now.
“‘Veneer’ by Kevinkempt was my top song three years in a row, and some of my top albums were Fleet Foxes and From Me to You,” said Kyle Jackowski (‘26).
Almost all students at Chamblee surely love listening to music, but few actually create it. One student in particular has just released his second album during his time at Chamblee.
“I make music as a hobby, nothing more; it’s more of a comfort activity. Life is crazy, but making music gives me a sense of control since I make my own rules when it comes to music-making,” said Rodriguez. “I’ve gotten so many compliments about my music because many people believe that my music will be bad since I’m a high schooler. But I guess I proved them wrong, and they’re super surprised by that.”
Over time, he has gained an appreciation for his own music while also gaining further support from others.
“After I released my first [album], I grew to not enjoy it since I rushed it at the end. After that, I was very adamant about improving, and I went through many ideas for the next album,” said Rodriguez. “This latest album honestly shouldn’t have taken this long to make, but I took my time, and I’m glad. I have no regrets about any of the songs on this album.”
Many students at Chamblee listened to various genres of music throughout the year, but a top favorite among most was hip-hop.
“I listen to so many genres and subgenres, but I listen mostly to alternative, indie, and hip-hop.
Recently, I’ve been super into James Brown. I’ve only known his super big songs until now, but I’ve been getting more into him,” said Rodriguez.
Another student claims a similar taste.
“I’d like to say I listen to a lot of different genres, but I definitely don’t listen to as many as I would like to,” said Els. “My listening is fifty percent hip-hop and different variations of that, like rap, underground rap, and alternative rap.”

A photo of Stephan Els’ 2023 Spotify Wrapped.

One student additionally highlights hip-hop as a favorite in his diverse musical tastes.
“I listen to a lot of electronic music, but also I really like pop, hip-hop, folk, and K-indie,” said Jackowski.
For those who may not like hip-hop or rap that much, a student recommends an album to help expand your taste.
“I highly recommend To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar to all NON-rap listeners,” said Rodriguez.
Another student shares a recommendation for those who would like to listen to more music this year as well.
“I would recommend people listen to more Chris Isaac. He has the song ‘Wicked Game,’ which became popular on TikTok, but I like a lot of his other music, too, and I would definitely recommend others to listen to it,” said Lukas Hosmer (‘26).
A lot of students have taken music from last year with them into 2024.
“I still listen to most of the music I listened to [last year]. Specifically, one album that has always stuck around, especially this year, was Awaken My Love by Childish Gambino. It’s just a perfect album that I took with me to 2024,” said Rodriguez.
Lastly, one student gives meaningful advice to keep in mind when listening to or discovering new music in the new year.
“Don’t be afraid to try something new. I always recommend going through albums from start to finish,” said Els. “Also, always support your local artists. That’s definitely what I learned last year. For example, Spider House is a local artist. She goes to [Decatur High School], and she dropped a very good album. I recommend ‘Weatherman’ off that.”
That’s a wrap for 2023. Be sure to take these suggestions into consideration during the new year and expand your horizons in regard to music in 2024.

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Amalee McWaters
Amalee McWaters, Staff Writer
Amalee McWaters (‘26) is a sophomore and Staff Writer of the Blue & Gold. In five years, she sees herself studying journalism at university in Austria. Her three favorite things are music, fashion, and journalism.
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