You may have heard the slightly insulting phrase ‘if you can walk and talk, you can go to Brock’ passed around by folks who have gotten on their high horses and sauntered off to University of Toronto or Laurier as though they’re the best people on the planet. Though it’s supposed to be derogatory (even if it’s untrue), I think there’s something charming and positive about the sentiment. Brock takes in people from all walks of life and never feels the need to be probing or condescending about where you’ve been. If you can walk or talk, we’d love to have you here and see what you’re about!
O-Week is intended to be a culmination of all of this; between the Vendor Fair, the Big Ticket Concert and any number of events being run across various residences, faculties and departments, it’s designed to provide endless opportunities to bring the Badgers together for the first time.
But… What if you don’t want to get stuck in right away? I know when I first got here, the leap was far too big (I moved here from the UK), and I needed a couple of days to get my bearings before I could muster myself up to really engage to a great extent.
Some of our Badgers might need to ease themselves into really being a Badger, which is who this playlist is for: everyone who wants to have a fun night with some friends, but maybe not reach the heights (or size) of the Paint Party. This is the solution for your post-summer catch ups, your move in days and your getting-to-know-people wine mixers (do people still do wine mixers? You know, like in Step Brothers? Because they should). This playlist is intended as an alternative to the vibe you’ll get at many of Brock’s own events, so you’ll have to forgive the somewhat coffee-house vibe, but hey, I’m sure it’ll resonate with someone.
Ryan Adams — ‘New York, New York’
The best summer song you’ve never heard. Light and breezy guitar riffs, a touch of organ that practically makes the sun burst from the clouds, lyrics that walk that fine line between love and longing; it has it all. Recommended for that first trip to Downtown St. Catharines, or for any highway driving you’ve got to do.
Queen — ‘Tie Your Mother Down’
A perfect contender for a party starter; a straightforward, high-energy rocker that gets a crowd going, but not well-known enough to qualify for drunken sing-along sessions. If you’re holding a beer while it’s on, you have to air guitar along with the intro. It’s the law.
James Bay — ‘Best Fake Smile’
‘Hold Back the River’ might have been the one to capture the radio waves, but this gem from James Bay’s first album is so effortlessly charming and fun. It might actually be scientifically impossible to have a bad time while this song is within earshot. I’m not sure how popular Bay is out here in Canada, but everyone in the UK fancies him, myself included, so I’d say this is a pretty safe bet.
The Mountain Goats — ’The Legend of Chavo Guerrero’
Look, I know everything about both the band and song name has put you off, but please hear me out. Slightly dark and depressing lyrics aside, this track is breezy light hearted (from a distance), but this song’s inclusion in your playlist serves a much grander purpose. Pay attention when you put this on: one person in the small crowd’s ears will perk up; this person will know all of the lyrics by heart and will tell you how much they love The Mountain Goats. They are also very likely to become your best friend. Tried and tested, proven by science, I promise.
Jefferson Starship — ‘Jane’
Much like the Mountain Goats song above, this song serves a double purpose: its groovy rock charms will surely please the masses, but it’ll also weasel out the two or three people who know the tune as the theme song from Wet Hot American Summer. Watch that movie if you haven’t, then make friends with every single person that has.
Talking Heads — ‘Psycho Killer’
Now this is a drunken sing-along tune! Great fun, without being too rowdy and turning your polite shindig into the sort of thing you were trying to avoid. If you’re hosting a summer barbecue and no one you invited is singing along, you might want to rethink that invitation list for next time.
Whitney — ‘Dave’s Song’
A wonderful wind-down song; perfect for when the bulk of the crowd has left and you’re left with the stragglers that you’re bound to have an impromptu super-emotional discussion with. The perfect background noise for discussing the summer fling that broke your heart, what you want to do once you’ve finished your degree, or any number of other things. It’s the end of the night, so whack this slow country-esque rock track on and let it all out. It’s always how the best friends are made.