Mix CD Redux: Dan’s Prozac Mix

It’s no secret that I’ve dealt with depression and anxiety for the better part of my life, and over the years, I’ve dealt with it in many different ways. One of the most successful ways I have done so is, not surprisingly, through music. Back in 2000, I made a mix CD that I titled simply “Dan’s Prozac Mix.”  Frankly, I can’t even remember whether or not I was taking Prozac at the time I made this CD, but it hardly matters because the goal was clear – gather up a bunch of songs that would make me feel better. What I ended up with is a motley mix of songs that I haven’t been able to stop listening to this last week.

A few comments:

  • Billy Joel’s “You’re Only Human (Second Wind)” holds up better than you might think. I feel like he made such a good call to stop making pop albums because by the late 80s, his albums were at the point of diminishing returns. Better to preserve the legacy than sully it with a bunch of late career turds.
  • “She Bangs” is a forgotten gem. It seriously smokes – in many ways a superior song than the better known (and overplayed) “Livin’ La Vida Loca.” It’s too bad that Ricky Martin couldn’t really replicate the success of the first album with Sound Loaded.
  • This CD was made at the height of the Napster era, so many of the remixes were Napster finds. Primary among these is the remix of the Bette Midler song “I’m Beautiful.” Honestly, it succeeded in doing the impossible and made something put out by Bette Midler even gayer than it already was. Have a listen here, but any song that talks about someone’s cosmic fabulosity or how Bette woke up one morning, flossed her teeth and decided “damn! I’m fierce!” is campy enough even before it was remixed for the clubs.
  • Loreena McKennitt seems out of place here, but really, the song, which consists of just the word “la” repeated over and over again, really makes me happy. Hers was one of my favorite concerts I saw last year, if only because it was so long in the coming.
  • I will always love the Barbra Streisand song “Emotion” because it is so 80s it is practically wearing leg warmers. I really wish she would have sung at least a snippet of it at her concert I saw this year, but alas, it was not from a number one album (or from her new album) so it did not make the set list. The whole Emotion album is so hilariously and awesomely dated. One of my all time favorite Streisand albums.
  • And there’s Madonna, with “Music” which had just come out that fall. Simpler times, folks.
  • Jo Dee Messina is so autotuned, it’s pathetic. However, there was no better song to end the CD with than “That’s The Way.” An ode to how things can go wrong, but you have to pick yourself back up again. Seems like the perfect last song to me.

But my favorite thing about this CD is its background. Oh and the Brady Bunch font that I used for the title.  There were two other Prozac mixes that I made but like most sequels, they failed to live up to the original. I made a Spotify playlist, but it’s lacking the Dolly Parton and, devastatingly, the Bette Midler song. Here it is anyway.

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