Bust-a-Move: Songs You Have To Dance To

I don't care who you are, where you're from, what color your skin is, or which decade is your favorite. If you are a human being with blood flowing through your veins, there is a sound out there that you are genetically predisposed to enjoy to the point of looking like an idiot.

No, I don't have any research to back this up.

No, there were no case studies or assessments performed.

That's just the way it is.

Now, if you know me, you know that I am a complete Michael Jackson stan. It almost brings me shame how much I turn up to his music. Especially when he and Quincy started making melodic mischief. How could you not? In the realm of popular music, his musical influence is as ubiquitous as Kevin Hart is in bootlegged movies. It's everywhere. Hashtag Shots Fired. 

Not only am I a huge fan of MJ, but I am an advocate of lookin' a plum fool with yo' jam comes on. Because I understand that feeling. I get the raw honesty of it. My wife calls it the "can't-help-its". It starts with a foot tap or a head nod, and ends up being a full blown shimmy. Being a grown up, we are getting so good at being appropriate and mature and proper and whatnot. It scares me to think of not being able to access that little bit of crazy. And it scares me a little more when I access that part of me, but get the "Oh, there Nick goes, sweating all hard and doing a bit too much. Again." look from everyone else. Like I'm doing something wrong by enjoying the music.

Whatever. I believe that we all need that one song that throws all propriety and self-awareness out the window and lets you come down with a case of the "I CANNOTs". It doesn't even have to be a song. Maybe it's a particular cadence. Maybe it's that one trap beat. Maybe it comes when you hear that Keone and Mari just released another choreo video. Whatever it is, I think that when it happens, we are witnessing art doing what it's supposed to do: inspire.

With that being said and no further ado, let's start this non-comprehensive list, in no particular order.  

1. Jam, Michael Jackson -

I believe this was the first music video I have ever seen. This was back in the day when you had to wait until your video showed up, unlike now, where I can binge watch any type of music video of choice on YouTube. Back in those days, my family didn't have cable, and my parents did not want us watching television on school days. I, in my youthful defiance, discovered a grey area called "The Box".  

Then, he appeared. 

I'll never forget it. The entire rebellious theme of the video played directly into my pre-teen sensibilities, but if that wasn't enough, it was Michael moving with such unbridled energy.

A few days ago, my brother was riding shotgun as we drove around town. He asked me what my favorite MJ song was. Before I really had time to fully process it, he had this song picked out.

I think he was right.

2. Pass The Courvosier, Pt.2, Busta Rhymes ft. Puffy and Pharell

To me, this song just invites an infectious shoulder-bounce. When I first heard this song, I knew that my church-going ears had no business being entertained by this...but I just couldn't help it! 

I bet you're doing a little shimmy right now yourself, aren't you?

Thought so.

3. Now That We've Found Love, Heavy D and The Boyz

I feel like I may be one of the many people who have always heard and loved this song, but really welcomed it into the fold of "Playlist Must Haves" after it played in the credits of "Hitch". However, after watching the video and remembering the energy of the New Jack Swing, this song is all about getting sweaty.

I mean, seriously. Old School New Jack choreography should be it's own Zumba class.

4. Shut Up and Dance, Walk the Moon

This song has earned its way on this little list because every time I hear it, I feel like it belongs on every wedding reception playlist ever. It's like "The Breakfast Club", "The Goofy Movie", and "High School Musical", all rolled into one.

5. Turn Up The Music, Chris Brown

This brother here. Say what you will about his personal life, continuous court appearances, frequent instances of swagger-jacking the Kang of Pop, and repeated questionable hair style choices, the boy can move. And this song is one of those that make you believe that you can dance just as well. Even if you're a chubby dreadhead with bad ankles. 

Peep the following quote from Very Smart Brothas:

As much as folks hate Chris Brown, we might as well go on ahead and accept it: he is probably the best accessory in urban pop music. He makes every song he’s on better and you can always put him on stage and he’ll do a good job dancing...Chris Brown and Drake are probably the two most valuable commodities in current Black music. For all of Chris’s shenanigans – and there are a plenty and likely to be more – the man is value added.
— Panama Jackson, Very Smart Brothas

What do you guys think? What other songs belong on this list?