I hate talking about sex. The whole pseudo-banter of “do this, not that,” and a frank inability by most people to express what they actually feel have taken the fun out of what’s apparently the most fun part of the human experience.

Angela Cesere

But of course that won’t stop me from contemplating what kind of music people actually like to use in their own bedrooms.

Yeah, you’ve heard the jokes: Mom and Dad totally conceived you to a Pink Floyd soundtrack (side note: gross – Floyd, a total Roxy Music rip-off, is probably one of the least sexy bands ever). If you listen to Al Green or Earth Wind & Fire on a regular basis, you’ve probably heard a song that your parents used to bump at around 2:30 on a Saturday morning while they rolled around naked in front of a raging fireplace.

Ain’t nothin’ wrong with that. In fact, that’s probably hotter music then we’ve got now.

Condoms are thrown at us everyday, people on “Sex and the City” and “Nip/Tuck” are tossing their legs behind their heads most nights on TV, and we seem to know more about orgasms than at any other time in human record.

But are our iPods sterile? Do people actually get naked to Coldplay without laughing to bits? Would you take someone seriously if they made out with you after putting on a Nelly record? We’ve got songs we like for drinking, running and sleeping. Anyone fancy themself a bedroom composer?

After a rough survey of my classmates and friends (let’s say about a dozen or so people), I can say with some confidence that most people actually have playlists ear-marked for the sole purpose of – uhhh – getting it on? – another awkward contemporary slang term for everyone-knows-what-I’m-talking-about.

The bands that crop up the most for guys on these lists seem to be outfits with sad-sack-love lyrics and a penchant for tender little breakdowns. See: Badly Drawn Boy, middle period Wilco and frequent nods to the sad-eyed king of love, Nick Drake. Other than that, guys lean toward the planetarium deep, extra-soft arena rock moments of U2 and The Rolling Stones. Oh, and one of my friends has the most perverted, disturbing sexual caveat in history – he actively listens to Journey in the bedroom.

Women seem to have less of a need for a music warm-up, but gravitate way more towards classic, sexy, bulletproof soul (excellent call) and Dave Matthews – a not-so-excellent call. I know he’s the perfect quasi-sensitive rich-ass bohemian guy, but his freaky voice modulation and bi-polar fiddle solos kill the mood faster then a sentence starting with, “My old boyfriend IM’d me the other day and – ” But stick with the Al Green and Sam Cooke. They’ll probably treat you with more respect and caring then college guys. Yeah, I am one. We suck.

The middle ground between the sexes seems to be brooding soul voices over kick-ass rhythm sections. I’d try and justify this by talking about psychosexual human behavior but I’m scared my parents are reading this – and laughing. Another shared trait: The modern music scene hasn’t really produced that many artists who ooze pure liquid sex.

R. Kelly, for his gorgeous voice and heroic libido, unfairly gets the short end of the stick thanks to some filmmaking and songs that swan dive overboard (“Sex In The Kitchen” and “I Like the Crotch On You” come to mind). D’Angelo is probably the best R&B singer of the past 25 years and all people remember is one music video. Britain’s Craig David is a cream puff for sure, but some of the dub-step remixes of “Seven Days” can probably dub-step a few people out of their pants.

Okay, okay, so I’ll relent and spill the beans. Yeah, I made one; it serves me in good stead. Though it must be noted if you actually care about someone, you may want to like, pretend you care by altering songs to ones your partner actually enjoys. She may like kissing you, but kissing to a G-Unit soundtrack? She’s a good woman for even tolerating you.

So here are the five best songs, straight from the iPod of an angst-ridden smart-ass direct to your brain. Don’t ask questions, just download:

“The Truth” – Handsome Boy Modeling School. Sexiest rap song ever.

“Seven Days (Premier Remix)” – Craig David. The coy British guy gets scandalous with the help of Mos Def. That’s right, scandalous.

“Shadow Boxer” – Fiona Apple. I likes me some angsty girls.

“Smooth” – D’Angelo. Oh come on. You try and ignore the piano.

“66” – The Afghan Whigs. Filthy little lyrics in a candy rock shell.

Try not to download the cosmically ridiculous make-out songs that have migrated onto my “Must Have Friends Listen to For Comedic Potential” playlist. Unless you like making out to R. Kelly’s “Sex Weed” or Bobby Valentino’s “Slow Down,” of course. Those are on the make-out playlists of the gods.


McGarvey’s favorite make-out song is “Kiss Me,” by Sixpence None the Richer. E-mail him at evanbmcg@umich.edu to commiserate.

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