For today’s Music Monday, we’re going ska-adjascent with No Doubt’s Just a Girl.
No Doubt are an American rock/punk/ska group who has a big (massive) hit in the middle 1990s with Don’t Speak (which really wasn’t terribly typical of their style!) and are still going today, albeit around Gwen Steffani’s solo career and non-musical ventures. Just a Girl was on the same album (and was the first single released).
This is a song that resonated with me when it came out. It describes the experience of being a young woman in a world that is still inclined to patronise and shelter you “for your own good” and it feels as true now as it ever did. For that reason, it’s very much one of Ayana’s tracks, because at the start of the book she’s making her first, tentative steps into the world after having been sheltered and a little suffocated (granted, her parents had good reasons!). At the same time, this is one of the pieces of music she’s inherited from Joelle. All of us tend to at least get a start in our musical tastes from our parents and if the lyrics of this song are biting commentary on being a girl in the world, the music is so fun and bouncy that you just know the young Ayana danced to it as a child when her mother played it for her.
Speaking of the music, that brings me to the other reason Just a Girl gets onto this soundtrack: it’s another of my walking music tracks. It’s got an energy to it that gets a real bounce in my step and if it doesn’t really contribute much to fixing any plot holes, that’s okay. Sometimes it’s just fun to bop along!
The Elsehere Soundtrack on Spotify has been updated to add this in.
That’s all for now. Happy reading and listening!