The All-Time Best Guilty Pleasure Songs

Graphic By Lindsay Hattrick

According to 26 music industry insiders

Music industry insiders get a bad rap for being too snooty, too pretentious, too invested in the arcane, too dismissive of what's popular. And that rap is not exactly untrue. But we wanted to see what would happen when we asked some of the industry’s most prominent members to talk about their guilty pleasure song, the one they kind of can't believe they really love.

While many of the artists, promoters, label heads, and producers we spoke with were really quick to say that there's no such thing as a "guilty pleasure" (because why feel bad about something you enjoy?), they were still happy to dive deep into their listening libraries and come up with some unexpected gems.

The following songs range from obscure deep cuts to early aughts pop songs recorded by reality stars, but they have one major thing in common: the nostalgia factor. That’s right, just like the rest of the world, it turns out that even the biggest music snobs still hold tight to the tracks of their youth. The only real surprise on this list is that nobody mentioned Paris Hilton's "Stars Are Blind," but what can you do? See what everyone opted for instead, below—and turn up the volume.

Photo Via Brooklyn Magazine.

Brandon Stosuy, Cofounder/EIC of The Creative Independent

Bon Jovi - "Runaway" I don’t feel guilty about loving Bon Jovi. I grew up in the pine barrens of southern New Jersey, and as a pre-internet, metal-loving teenager in a small town, I didn’t really have the context or care to discriminate between Slayer, Metallica, Black Flag, Minor Threat, and hair metal—it all felt better than Top 40 to me. Bon Jovi’s early albums—and associated videos of them walking on the boardwalk at the Jersey Shore or playing in tiny shitty clubs—left a real mark on me. Year after year, especially as the weather gets warmer, I find myself mixing 1984’s Bon Jovi, 1985’s 7800° Fahrenheit, and 1986’s Slippery When Wet into my regular rotation of dark electronic music, black metal, noise, [The Cure's] Disintegration, drone, and Grouper. In fact, I'm currently listening to "Runaway" on repeat.

Screenshot via Youtube

While the song should serve as a reminder to your exes

Just a day after dropping new single "Nunya," featuring Dom Kennedy, Kehlani has released the winter-wonderland visuals to go along with. The singer, NYLON November cover star, and mother-to-be rocks some of the best winter 'fits I've seen in a while, including a glorious puffer jacket that could double as a down comforter that I absolutely need in my life right now.

Kehlani is clearly living her best life up in some snow-filled forest hideaway, vibing on the beach at sunset and sipping on something bubbly as she coolly reminds nosy exes that who she's with is "nunya business." There's not much of a story line (unlike her recent "Nights Like This" video); the main takeaway is that Kehlani is busy dancing through a forest, missing no one and chilling amongst people who are clearly not the subjects of the song.

Kehlani is only two short months away from bringing baby Adeya into the world, who she thanked for helping her get through the video process. "Shot that 7 months pregnant in da snow..." Kehlani wrote on Twitter, adding, "thank u baby for da motivation, mommy was FROZE."

Even from the womb, Adeya has been hustling hard alongside her momma. Twitter user @ODtheMC pointed out that this is already her second music video appearance, and she's not even been born.

Get some mulled wine ready and escape into Kehlani's winter getaway, below. Stay tuned for her forthcoming mixtape, While We Wait, out on February 22.

Kehlani - Nunya (feat. Dom Kennedy) [Official Music Video]



Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images.

As in Black Panther Political Party leader

It's been a running joke that the Black parents/grandparents of millennials were really confused about all of the Black Panther hoopla ahead of its 2018 release. Many of them were anticipating a movie about members of the Black Panther Political Party and didn't know who the hell T'Challa was. Well, those people are about to have their moment, and we're about to have another one.

Variety is reporting that Fred Hampton, the Black Panther leader at the center of the upcoming biopic Jesus Was My Homeboy, could be played by none other than Daniel Kaluuya. Apparently, he is in negotiations for the role. And he's not the only Black Panther alum in the mix. The Warner Bros. project is being produced by Black Panther director, Ryan Coogler. The same article reports that the forever swoon-worthy Lakeith Stanfield—who appeared with Kaluuya in Jordan Peele's Get Out—is also in negotiations, to play William O'Neal, an FBI informant who infiltrated the Black Panther Party.

Coogler and Charles King are putting together a dream cast to tell a difficult story. Hampton was killed by the Chicago Police Department, while his pregnant girlfriend lay next to him, thanks in part to information they received from O'Neal. Whenever it's out, I strongly recommend having Black Panther queued up as a palate cleanser.