Palo Alto High School's Arts and Culture Magazine

C Magazine

Palo Alto High School's Arts and Culture Magazine

C Magazine

Palo Alto High School's Arts and Culture Magazine

C Magazine

Contemporary Classics

As music evolves from current to timeless, C Magazine asked the local community which songs from this generation, they think will become classic

As someone walks into a grocery store or turns on their car radio, it’s common to hear similar melodies of songs that never go out of fashion, or are timeless. “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond, “Dancing Queen” by ABBA and other iconic songs hold a special place in people’s hearts as classics. Paly choir teacher and musician Michael Najar connects a song’s lifespan to its melody.

“One of the things that helps a song become timeless is a simple melody, that is [also] a little strange,” Najar said. “Oddly enough, those two things make a huge difference.”

Stanford choir member Sawyer Lai also associates a song’s memorability with its sound. 

“One factor is having catchy melodies that’s easy to learn and to sing along with,” Lai said. “Another thing is that lyrics are a big part of it; if you have quality lyrics that are memorable or profound or engaging it’s easy for listeners to latch on to. A song is more memorable simply because it’s easier for people to replicate.” 

One of the things that helps a song become timeless is a simple melody, that is [also] a little strange.

— Michael Najar

Different generations develop unique music tastes due to the societal trends of that time, so they have various interpretations of what a timeless song is. Through the shift from physical to digital media, the way people experience music has changed — therefore, there’s no objective definition of a timeless song. 

“It’s sociologically impossible not to be timeless because, between the ages of 13 to 17, your brains are just ready to accept what’s being offered to you.” Najar said. “The way we even hear music is different, there is a chance that the next few years will change the way we consume and feel music. So timelessness is subjective.”

According to Najar, songs like “All the Single Ladies” by Beyonce, with simple melodies and unique bridge, have grown timeless and iconic. Many would say that current popular artists like Taylor Swift or Ed Sheeran have the potential to become timeless in the future as well.

With mentions of songs like “Ophelia,” “Just Wanna Rock” and more, C Mag asked the community which songs they think of as timeless, and songs they think will become timeless in later generations.

“A timeless song is ‘Love’ by Keyshia Cole, and a timeless song from our generation that I believe will become timeless is ‘Just Wanna Rock’ by Lil Uzi Vert. I think [it will become timeless] because when you hear the song, everyone kind of gets hype and they immediately gravitate to the dance floor. It’s a very unique kind of sound.” — Yosief Abraham, Stanford Student





“Something I think is going to be a timeless song by ‘Brazil’ by Declan Mckenna, because it comes back every season as soon as the weather gets warmer outside. Currently I would say a timeless song is ‘September’ by Earth, Wind & Fire, because it’s been remixed and there are different iterations.”

— Emily Tang, 10th grade




“I would say the song, ‘Somebody That I Used to Know’ by Gotye, is already a bit of a classic. It has this very unique beat to it, and the lyrics can be relatable to people. It’s about a failed relationship in some way, and it’s just a little bit mysterious. They were kind of a one hit wonder, I’ve never heard another song from Gotye. But the song still plays at parties, I just heard some kind of house remix of it at a frat party. I think 30 years from now our children will be singing ‘Somebody That I Used to Know’.”

— Goerge Porteous, Stanford Student




‘Ophelia’ by The Lumineers or ‘Tongue Tied’ by Grouplove is timeless because no matter how much time goes by ,‘Ophelia’ isjust such a great song and givesme so much nostalgia, and the same goes for ‘Tongue Tied’, it can just always put me in a great mood no matter what time it is.”

— Natalia Pahlavan, Stanford Student





“I think ‘Flowers’ by Miley Cyrus will end up being timeless because it’s iconic, it’s catchy, it’s ripe for lots and lots of parodies. I can see it in movies that’ll become classics and I could see a lot of people doing dances to it. I think songs that are fun to sing, catchy and easy are what ends up [staying timeless]”

— Alicia Szebert, Chemistry Teacher




“Reggae is such an iconic genre so I think ‘Praise Jah in the Moonlight’ will become timeless since YG Marley is setting the stage for the genre’s revival in mainstream media for the coming generations.”

— Alma Samet, 12th grade






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About the Contributors
Talia Boneh
Talia Boneh, Staff Writer
2023-2024 Staff Writer I joined C Mag because I loved every magazine's spreads and design, as well as their focus on arts, music, and culture. I believe my favorite part of C Mag will be designing each article and creating new spreads every cycle. I love journalism because I love being able to go more in-depth in topics of interest and give people a voice through our magazine, as well as getting more involved in the community at Paly. In my free time, I love to draw, bake desserts, get food with friends, and go on walks. In the future, I hope to go deeper into the world of design and learn more about it!
Saachi Nagar
Saachi Nagar, Business Manager
2022-2023 Staff Writer 2023-2024 Business Manager I joined C Mag because I love digital design and writing about arts + culture! My favorite parts of C Mag are getting to interview super cool people in unique fields and getting to be creative with design. I love going to the beach, hanging out with friends and thrifting!