Waves of nostalgia always come in whenever we think about our pre-teen girl days. It was the time when we would be at our happiest at the sight of invisible pens, colorful ties and hair clips, slap bracelets, and morning cartoons. But perhaps what would totally bring us back to memory lane the most were the tunes that helped us cope with all our tween feels. Which is why we've rounded up some of the artists that helped shape our formative years and play musical matchmaker to the current artists they remind us of.
1 The All-American Rejects
Formed in Oklahoma while two of the band's members were still navigating their way through high school in 1999, their humble beginnings paid off big time when they released their self-titled album in 2003. They're best known for "Swing, Swing," "Dirty Little Secret," and "It Ends Tonight."
Current musical match: We're going with 5 Seconds of Summer on this one. Both bands describe their sound as pop-rock and both lean towards the edgy punk, pinprick hooks, LSS-inducing kind.
2 Fountains of Wayne
A coming-of-age song hinting at how feelings are confusing and misleading as an adolescent paved the way for the band's success story. Featured in countless pop culture references in movies and television, the triumph of "Stacy's Mom" even garnered Fountains of Wayne a Grammy nomination.
Current musical match: The Vamps. The happy-go-lucky vibe of their songs coupled with their rocky power-pop style and their ability for their tracks to become anthems pretty much sum it up. Oh, and they both have titles that have girls' names in them with this similar cutesy feel too. You have to play "Oh, Cecilia" and "Hey, Julie" side by side.
3 Backstreet Boys
Boybands were all the rage in the '90s and arguably, Backstreet Boys was one of the pioneers of its heyday. We're pretty sure "Quit Playing Games With My Heart" and "I Want It That Way" will always have a place in anyone's heart no matter what. BRB, have to belt out those songs with feelings.
Current musical match: Definitely, One Direction. Not only are they similar in terms of worldwide success, their roots are pop at its core. Moreover, 1D is like the encapsulated version of the evolution of the '90's boy band era.
4 Mariah Carey
Her five-octave vocal range and signature whistle tone has positioned her on top of her game from hits like "One Sweet Day" to karaoke birit staple " Hero" to the hugot tune "We Belong Together." A true definition of an icon, she has been named as one of the best-selling music artists of all time. We repeat, all time.
Current musical match: Ariana Grande's evident penchant for rhythms and blues that still bleed into the pop realm mixed with her incredible range and, of course, the whistle tone being one of her distinctive styles is reminiscent of a young MC.
5 Christina Milian
Bubblegum pop with urban undertones mostly described Milian’s sound in her early years as an artist. Her songs "AM to PM" and "When You Look At Me" were definitely part of our dance party soundtrack growing up.
Current musical match: Even if Zendaya Coleman's music touches on electropop, her tunes are essentially a hybrid of pop and R&B, containing urban cuts as well. The vibe both she and early Christina exudes is youthful, fresh, and get-your-girls-together-and-rave worthy. Oh, and they have super awesome dance numbers in their music videos, too.
6 Faith Hill
Named as one of the great female country artists of the '90s, she has changed the landscape of the genre and brought it outside its niche audience by giving it a semi-pop spin. This is evident in her tracks like "Take Me As I Am," "This Kiss," and "Breathe."
Current musical match: Taylor Swift was firstly drawn to the sound and storytelling nature of country music, which led her to write songs that understand every girl's teenage life in so many ways. In fact, Faith was her childhood role model and early T-Swizzle's sound pre-Red days would definitely attest to that.
7 Mandy Moore
Some critics might have called her out on her past musical work as tacky bubblegum pop but we love her first two albums nonetheless. Who wouldn't have jammed in their pajamas to "Candy" and "Crush"? Or belted out "Only Hope" with the stereo up in their premature pigtails? No regrets.
Current musical match: Bella Thorne's and Mandy's kind of music is what you jam to while getting ready with your girlfriends for a night out. Super easy to sing along to!
8 James Blunt
This English singer-songwriter broke out into the scene when he made our teenage hearts melt in 2005 with "You're Beautiful" and broke our hearts into a million pieces later on in the same year with "Goodbye, My Lover."
Current musical match: Yet another English singer-songwriter, Ed Sheeran, like Blunt, is known for his power ballads that can either make you fall inlove or have you in tears. Nonetheless, they’re always heartfelt.
Which artists have you listened to already? Let's talk in the comments or tweet us @candymagdotcom.