The Sound of a Generation

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Every generation has its own soundtrack. The Silent Generation (people born in the '20s and '30s) had big band and swing. Baby Boomers (born in the '40s and '50s) had rock and soul. Generation X (born in the '60s and '70s) had grunge and hip-hop. On this edition of All Songs Considered, we look back at the defining music of those generations and ask what the soundtrack is for the current generation, Generation Y (or Millennials). Bob Boilen talks with Carrie Brownstein (Monitor Mix blogger and former guitarist for Sleater-Kinney), Stephen Thompson (editor for NPR's Song of the Day), and Amy Phillips (senior editor with Pitchforkmedia.com) about the most memorable music of the past 40 years.

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The Sound of a Generation

Cover for Fear of a Black Planet

Public Enemy

  • Artist: Public Enemy
  • Song: Fight the Power
  • From: Fear of a Black Planet
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Song
Fight the Power
Album
Fear of a Black Planet
Artist
Public Enemy
Label
Def Jam
Released
1990

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The Byrds

  • Artist: The Byrds
  • Song: You Ain't Going Nowhere
  • From: Sweetheart of the Rodeo [Bonus Tracks]
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Song
You Ain't Going Nowhere
Album
Sweetheart of the Rodeo [Bonus Tracks]
Artist
The Byrds
Label
Sony/BMG
Released
1968

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Soulja Boy Tell Em

  • Artist: Soulja Boy Tell Em
  • Song: Crank That (Soulja Boy)
  • From: Souljaboytellem.com
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Crank That (Soulja Boy)
Album
Souljaboytellem.com
Artist
Soulja Boy Tell Em
Label
Geffen
Released
2007

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M.I.A.

  • Artist: M.I.A.
  • Song: Bucky Done Gun
  • From: Arular
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Song
Bucky Done Gun
Album
Arular
Artist
M.I.A.
Label
Interscope
Released
2005

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Kelly Clarkson

  • Artist: Kelly Clarkson
  • Song: Since U Been Gone
  • From: Breakaway [Bonus CD]
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Song
Since U Been Gone
Album
Breakaway [Bonus CD]
Artist
Kelly Clarkson
Label
Sony
Released
2005

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