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20 Years, 20 Songs: The Blink-182 Anniversary Playslist

by Photo of Matt Comer

The most influential pop-punk band of our generation turns 20.

20 Years, 20 Songs: The Blink-182 Anniversary Playslist

Over the last two decades, Blink-182 has released six albums, played with two drummers, and went on one 'indefinite hiatus' that at times seemed very, very, definite. But despite their transformation from the goofiest to most elusive pop-punk band over the years, one thing has remained constant -- awesome music. The band turns 20 years old today, and they've announced appearances at all five of Australia's Soundwave Festival shows in 2013. Oh, and rumor has it that Travis Barker may attend, making his first flight since the devastating crash that severely injured the drummer and claimed the life of the incredibly talented  DJ AM in 2008.

Over the years Blink has touched the lives of many, and to see them back in full swing with their last album, Neighborhoods, is truly amazing. As any Blink fan knows, as great as this comeback LP is, it is far from a complete representation of the band from 1992-present. So, without further ado, from farts to heartbreaks, let's go through a 20 song Blink-182 playlist to honor 20 years of...well, a little bit of everything. 

In no particular order, except...

"Dumpweed" Enema of the State (1999)

  • Anyone who has ever seen Blink live knows how the opening riff to this song marks the start of the show, and it's only appropriate to start our playlist the same way. Without warning, as the stage lights are still off and the PA is playing some 90's hip-hop, the curtain drops and Mark, Tom, and Travis begin to shred. I can still feel the goosebumps. Just listen for yourself:

"Feeling This" Blink-182 (2003)

  • This is one of my favorite Blink-182 songs for a couple reasons. It comes off their self-titled record, which marked a change that was hinted at with a few songs in the previous, Take Off Your Pants and Jacket -- maturity. Also this song was in Madden 2004, also known as the best video game of all time. 
"Online Songs" Take Off Your Pants And Jacket (2001)
  • TOYPAJ was the first album that I bought with my own money. I'll never forget riding my trick bike to Tower Records and placing a pile of crumpled dollar bills and dirty coins in front of the clerk, only to be told that I needed an adult with me to buy the record. Imagine my frustration as I tried to convince my mom to let me buy this album, without realizing the double entendre suggested by the title. I was furious, but I digress. This album was loaded with singles -- which will be featured later in this list -- but the infectious hook from "Online Songs" still stands out as one of my favorites. 
"Carousel" Cheshire Cat (1994)
  • Even during their earliest days, Blink-182 flirted with the topics of love, loneliness, and change in their lyrics. "Carousel" is a timeless song that everyone can relate to at one point or another. Aside from the raw, but catchy riffs, Tom DeLonge belts out words that hit everyone square in the face during their early adulthood: "A tank of gas is a treasure to me/ I know now that nothing is free"
"Wishing Well"Neighborhoods (2011)
  • It really is amazing how this band has added to their sound over the years. This song off their comeback album is a perfect example of how the guys have found new ways to stay catchy and true to their pop-punk sound, while still incorporating new styles. The result is a refreshing, yet invitingly familiar track with an awesome chorus led again by Tom. 
"Dammit" Dude Ranch (1997)
  • If you play guitar and like Blink-182, then I know you remember trying to play "Dammit" during the early stages of your learning. The simple, yet iconic opening riff is one of their most famous. A staple of their live set, this song was also the first mainstream hit by the band. The song chronicles a breakup, a lesson learned, and the famous realization: "Well I guess this is growing up..."

"What's My Age Again?" Enema of the State (1999)

  • The success of "Dammit" paved the way for this hit single that sums the band up in a nutshell. Yeah, their age may make them adults, but their behavior is more in line with the kids who are barely allowed to listen to their music. Of course, you can't talk about this track without mentioning the famously naked music video. 
"Always" Blink-182 (2003)
  • I remember when this song came out. I remember my friends thinking that Blink-182 was turning into a poppy band, and I remember being a teenage punk who would could not bare the thought of my little sister and I liking the same song. So while my young, ignorant self took a break from the band (before I realized they would be taking a break from themselves), I am so glad that I can revisit this love song as a young adult. 
"Wasting Time" Cheshire Cat (1994)
  • ...and with that let's take it back to the old days. Another raw gem from the boys' debut album that still resonates with me, today, and another catchy guitar riff that is responsible for many blisters on my teenage fingertips. Mark Hoppus asks the classic question, "Am I wasting my time thinking about a girl?"
"The Rock Show"  Take Off Your Pants And Jacket (2001)
  • A classic Blink-182 single, and one of my favorite videos of all time. I loved watching the guys take label money and just throw it around to everyone from homeless people to skater kids. To me it captures that moment where the band was reaching such a pinnacle of success, making more money than they ever could dream about, and not losing that careless spark that attracted the fans in the first place. It was punk rock's answer to the rap videos featuring wads of cash, big rims, and women, that dominated the airwaves at the time.

"First Date" Take Off Your Pants And Jacket (2001)

  • This song and the last go hand in hand, for me. "The Rock Show" started the summer of 2001, and "First Date" took us into the new school year. The music video was hilarious, with the guys looking like total goofballs in a 1970's setting. Whether it's then or now, the butterflies before a first date will never go away, not even for a few year hiatus. 

"Up All Night" Neighborhoods (2011)

  • This was the song that some of us waited almost a decade for. Even after announcing their reunion at the Grammy's in 2009, Blink-182 toured extensively for two years before even releasing a track. This song is another example of progressive and classic Blink mixed into one sound. During their years apart, Mark, Tom, and Travis had all been experimenting with new projects and genres, so nobody really knew what to expect from the comeback LP. "Up All Night" eased fears and built excitement all at the same time. 
"Josie" Dude Ranch (1997)
  • We've already heard about Josie during this playlist in "Online Songs" from TOYPAJ. As many dedicated fans know, Josie was Mark Hoppus' fictional, 'ideal' girlfriend. She makes her debut in this track off Dude Ranch, and by this account -- she's awesome. 
"Aliens Exist" Enema of the State (1999)
  • It's really no secret that Tom DeLonge loves outer space. Here he sings that aliens are real, and he saw them. Who knows, maybe a 20 year old Giorgio Tsoukalos was listening closely to this one...
"Anthem Part Two"Take Off Your Pants And Jacket (2001)
  • This catchy, upbeat track that opens up TOYPAJ has some deeper meaning. One generation is, essentially, has to take some responsible for the outcome of the next. The youth make their own decisions, and the youth always finds ways to F' up, but the prior genration (MOM AND [email protected]*^(#* OMG) laid the foundation. You can imagine how this captured the attention of teens, even if they only understood the line, "If we're f****'d up, you're to blame!"
"I Miss You" Blink-182 (2003)
  • I didn't even try to tackle this one on guitar. It was too different. It was another song from their self-titled record that I really had to revisit during their hiatus. It was a massive hit, but not for me until years later. The fact that such a beautiful song could come from the same guys who wrote a song called "D*ck Lips" is something that makes them so...great. It's a huge reason why they're here 20 years later. 
"Man Overboard" The Mark, Tom, and Travis Show (The Enema Strikes Back!)
  • The only studio recording on their 2000 live album, this song managed to become one of Blink's fan favorites.
"Stay Together For The Kids" Take Off Your Pants And Jacket (2001)
  • Not the most fun Blink song, but an important one in their history. The lyrics tackle the topic of divorce, and how the kids caught in the middle often blame themselves. Again the band proves how they can relate to their fans on all ends of the spectrum. A song that hits home for many, I'm sure.
"Adam's Song" Enema of the State (1999)
  • Arguably Blink's most serious song considering some of the events in the band's history, the anti-suicide track has since been retired from their live set. Obviously nothing like their humorous cuts, or even some of their darker tracks, the song was still one of their biggest singles, and yet another simple, yet memorable Blink-182 guitar riff. 

"All The Small Things" Enema of the State (1999)

  • The transition from "Adam's Song" to this monster hit single is musically smooth, and while the video may suggest otherwise, the content of this song is not too far off the serious tone of the one before it. It's the little things you do that can show someone that you really care, and sometimes those 'small things' can make all the difference in someone's attitude and actions. Okay, fine, let's talk about the amazing parody video. How could they possibly follow up their naked run in "What's My Age Again?" Easy. Make fun of everyone that's relevant. The band pokes fun at boy bands, the Britney Spears and Christina Aguileras, Rick Martin, and even Sugar Ray. 

Obviously there are many other songs that could be on this list. I could make an entire new list featuring their crude cuts, including the famous bonus tracks from Take Off Your Pants And Jacket (that poor, poor dog). The point is that Blink-182 is so many things, to so many people. No two Blink playlists are entirely thee same, and that's probably the best part about them. Happy 20 years, fellas. We're so glad that you decided to stay together for the kids in all of us. 

What's you're favorite Blink-182 song? Tell us in the comments section.

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