In alternative music, the first half of the '90s was known for being the era of grunge. By 1999, rap metal and pop punk was starting to take over. But in between those eras was a music that didn't quite fit anywhere else, like 1997's "Fly."
Alternative rock radio of 1997 was filled with songs that were jarringly different from the music of just a few years earlier. After the first half of the decade was filled with angst, 1997 brought us the poppy sing-a-long "Semi-Charmed Life." (However, the song's about crystal meth addiction, so it's not really as playful as it seems.)
3. Mighty Might Bosstones, 'The Impression That I Get'
Alternative rock seemed to be in between genres in 1997. The music industry and the record-buying public were scattered all over for the next big thing. One of those things was the revival of ska music, which led to this unlikely hit by The Mighty Mighty Bosstones.
A ska revival was a surprise in 1997, but not as much as the revival of swing. On the radio that year, you could hear songs by Pearl Jam and Smashing Pumpkins, followed by a musical genre that was beloved by your grandparents. And that's how we got the song "Zoot Suit Riot."
Another possible "next big thing" in alternative music was supposed to be "electronica," which was used as a catch-all term for any artist who uses mainly electronic equipment. or instruments. This included acts like Fatboy Slim, The Chemical Brothers, and The Prodigy, who hit it big with "Firestarter."
White Town was the project of singer-songwriter Jyoti Mishra. in the song, he appears to be singing from the point of view of a woman, using a sample of a song from the 1930s. There's no way "Your Woman" could have been a hit in any year other than 1997.
1997 was such a weird year for alternative music that it even had a song to describe it perfectly. The song itself has a Latin sound, but OMC (or Otara Millionaires Club) is actually from New Zealand. And 1997, every time you turned around, "How Bizarre" was in your face.
In case ABBA, Roxette and Ace of Base weren't enough proof that Sweden knows how to create great pop music, along came The Cardigans in 1997. "Lovefool" was used in the soundtrack to Romeo + Juliet, and became a number two hit that year.
As everybody knows, one of the best topics for a pop song is to sing about that time you drove your girlfriend to get an abortion. Actually, that's not a thing that anybody knows, except for Ben Folds Five. And in the strange year of 1997, "Brick" became a hit.
Chumbawamba is a group of anarchists who somehow made one of the biggest drinking and sports stadium anthems of all time. The song encourages listeners to "piss the night away" while bragging about have the Weeble-like ability to get knocked down and then get up again. And for that, we'll be forever grateful to "Tubthumping."
It wasn't just new artists who were making strange music in 1997. The year also brought us U2's experimental album Pop, and the song "Discotheque." The album seemed to confuse the band's longtime fans; that's just how '97 rolls.
The end of 1997 brought us "Dammit," the breakthrough song for Blink-182. It helped usher in the wave of pop punk that would dominate the airwaves for the next several years. The strange year of music was coming to a close. As Blink would sing, "I guess this is growing up."