Song of the Day #4,515: ‘God is a DJ’ – Pink

My final 2003 album wasn’t a major commercial success, or musically groundbreaking. It’s just the third studio album by an artist I really like but don’t feature very often: Pink.

Try This was Pink’s follow-up to the smash 2001 hit Missundaztood, which went 5X Platinum and remains her best-selling album, with 12 million copies moved worldwide. That album marked a shift from pop to rock, and Try This continued the evolution of her sound.

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Song of the Day #4,514: ‘Go to Sleep’ – Radiohead

Radiohead had a great 90s, with its three albums moving them from Nirvana-wannabe alt-rockers to one of the most acclaimed bands in the world. Their albums The Bends and OK Computer have been hailed as two of the most important alternative albums ever.

The 2000s saw Radiohead embrace their critical darling status by steering their music away from the mainstream and into electronic, art-pop territory. 2000’s Kid A and 2001’s Amnesiac were embraced by critics and called modern rock masterpieces.

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Song of the Day #4,513: ‘Naughty Girl’ – Beyoncé

The same year Jay-Z released what he called his “retirement” album, his new girlfriend and future wife, Beyoncé Knowles, released her debut, Dangerously in Love.

Beyoncé had a successful career already as part of Destiny’s Child, but the trio had begun releasing solo material in order to boost the band’s profile. The move wound up boosting Beyoncé’s profile, no doubt, but Destiny’s Child released only one more album and Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams had less illustrious solo careers.

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Song of the Day #4,512: ’99 Problems (Live)’ – Jay-Z

Every time I do one of these Decades theme weeks, I highlight a celebrated rap album from the year in question, hoping it will make a big impact despite my aversion to the genre.

For 2003, the lucky record is Jay-Z’s The Black Album. And I’m sorry to report that it fared about as poorly as the rest.

Rap just isn’t my genre, and even Jay-Z’s “farewell” album, widely praised as one of his best, can’t change that.

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Song of the Day #4,511: ‘My Immortal’ – Evanescence

My only exposure to Evanescence — whose album Fallen is next up in my Decades look at the year 2003 — is through this record’s cover image. I recall seeing lead singer Amy Lee’s white face and big eyes staring at me when browsing music aisles back in the day.

Evanescence is a nu metal band out of Little Rock, Arkansas. Their sound is a mix of heavy guitars and lilting piano, Metallica meets Diana Krall. It’s not surprising that they’re completely off my radar because this is not my kind of music.

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