Winter break is always a good time for things like unwinding after the fall semester, preparing for the upcoming semester, and spending time with family/friends. I did do all three things this winter. In my spare time, I watched a ton of TV shows like Alice in Borderland and Degrassi, but I also watched a lot of movies like Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (2022), Missing (2023), and Donnie Darko (2001). I bought new notebooks for my spring semester classes and reviewed some syllabi. Of course, I also I spent a lot of time with my family, which was fun (most of the time).
But I think the most interesting thing I did over break is probably taking a class called “American Popular Music”. It’s a class about the history of a wide variety of music genres like rap, soul, rock, and jazz. I was excited to take it because I genuinely love music and pretty much listen to it every day. It was a fun class to take because of discussions where I was able to hear about my classmates’ perspectives on topics like the controversy of rap, artists that have influenced them, and songs that reach them emotionally.
One of the assignments that I really enjoyed doing was a lyrical analysis essay about a song that speaks to me personally and to society. I chose “Juicy” by the Notorious B.I.G. It’s a song that I’ve loved for years and doing the essay actually allowed me to put what I love about the song into words. “Juicy” was one of the first mainstream rap songs about a rapper’s rise to the top and to me, it’s a song that represents a sort of victory lap.
Overall, I think the class has given me a greater appreciation for the evolution of music and how it’s led to the current era we’re in. I also got a lot of music recommendations out of it, so it’s safe to say I got plenty out of the experience.