“Nintendo, Atari. Sega’s my Ferrari.”
I never fail to sing along to the outro to Barns Courtney’s “99” because it so perfectly sums up my childhood. It’s a song I’m constantly searching for on my favorite radio station, giving it hundreds of Spotify plays a week, and aspiring to be as cool as.
Though the track didn’t hit airwaves until late 2018, I only recently discovered it, so I’m feeling like I really missed out. Encapsulated in a breezy, retro-flavored tune, I found the shining moments of my childhood. Courtney sings about staying up late by the light of your television, sleeping all day and talking all night, and all the simple pleasures that came with growing up in the ’90s. Every verse feels so personal, as if I could have penned the track myself. That’s why it’s quickly become one of my go-to Rock Band 4 tracks.
I’ll always remember the nights I stayed on the phone with my friends, boyfriends, and internet acquaintances on the phone or via AOL Instant Messenger in the pitch black, the inky darkness illuminated only by my computer or television screen. Much of my adulthood is spent chasing the joy of my childhood and the moments I thought would last forever, like when the most difficult decision I had to make at the time was which game to rent from the Movie Gallery by my house. Life was simple, easy to understand, and beautiful.
I never want to let go of those memories, and “99” ensures I’ll never have to. —Brittany Vincent