best teen-pop song actually written by a teenager?

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"Teen-pop" meaning Top 40-friendly, bubbly, girl/boy music. "Written by" meaning "the lyrics, at least."

Cast your ballots.

Jody Beth Rosen, Monday, 26 August 2002 12:21 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

did frankie lymon write "teenager in love"? did hanson write "mmm-bop"?

Fritz Wollner (Fritz), Monday, 26 August 2002 13:26 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Did Billy write 'Because we want to'? If not, did she want to?

alext (alext), Monday, 26 August 2002 13:32 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"Only In My Dreams" is suprisingly great.

Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Monday, 26 August 2002 13:33 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

oops I meant "Why do fools fall in love" for frankie lymon. "teenager in love" was Dion & The Belmonts.

Fritz Wollner (Fritz), Monday, 26 August 2002 13:33 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Im ooooooooooh so tempted to say anything from Sarah Mclaughlin's first album but she didnt write any of it alone if former Netwerk musicians have anything to say about it.

Mr Noodles (Mr Noodles), Monday, 26 August 2002 13:34 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Kate Bush was 17 or so for Wuthering Heights, that good enough?

Mr Noodles (Mr Noodles), Monday, 26 August 2002 13:36 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Yes, because Kate Bush is such a bubbly teen-pop songwriter.

Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Monday, 26 August 2002 13:37 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

well, forgot about that part, my bad.
It is top 40 friendly though, at least in my little cubicle, rest of the world be dammed. I've got headphones, I can ignore THEM.

Mr Noodles (Mr Noodles), Monday, 26 August 2002 13:42 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"Wuthering Heights" is very pop, very teenage, very girl/boy.

Jody Beth Rosen, Monday, 26 August 2002 13:46 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Down In the Tube Station At Midnight

Winkelmann, Monday, 26 August 2002 14:08 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Something by Sugababes or maybe M2M if the songs had to be written by the teenager(s) only

Chupa-Cabras (vicc13), Monday, 26 August 2002 14:15 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Stevie Wonder-"Uptight (Everything's Alright)".

Arthur (Arthur), Monday, 26 August 2002 14:29 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

was gonna vote for "Why Do Fools Fall in Love" as soon as I saw the category (GREAT category, btw) and still am.

M Matos (M Matos), Monday, 26 August 2002 15:22 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

eater to thread!!

mark s (mark s), Monday, 26 August 2002 15:26 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

sadly, according to a kinda sketchy Frankie Lymon website I just looked at, "Why Do Fools..." was written by a neighbour of Farankie's. No word if she was a teenager when she wrote it, though.

Fritz Wollner (Fritz), Monday, 26 August 2002 15:26 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"kinda sketchy" sounds about right. I've always heard FL wrote it, and I believe it--what adult would write that song? (no adult has ever been able to sing it, either--no one can sing it except Frankie Lymon without sounding like a moron.)

M Matos (M Matos), Monday, 26 August 2002 15:29 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I'll second M2M--"Don't Say You Love Me." Roxanne Shante doesn't count, huh?

Keith Harris (kharris1128), Monday, 26 August 2002 15:40 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I'd count Roxanne Shante if my category weren't strictly "teen pop" -- there ain't a damn thing teenybopper about her lyrics.

Jody Beth Rosen, Monday, 26 August 2002 15:48 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Girl From Mars by Ash!!!!

Calum, Monday, 26 August 2002 15:58 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"Class War"

The Dils

autovac, Monday, 26 August 2002 16:26 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I'd say "the letter" by the Box Tops but I'm not sure whether Alex Chilton wrote or not.

Dave Beckhouse, Monday, 26 August 2002 17:14 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

i'll second the 'only in my dreams' nom.

maura (maura), Monday, 26 August 2002 17:21 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I'm listening to 'The Kick Inside' as we speak. Kate Bush is indeed magnificent.

Can I also add that the Sugababes are fab too? Some of the best pop I've heard in donkey's years.

Has anyone mentioned 'Acetone' by Kenickie? Dire band but top song. Not worthy or being mentioned in the same breath as 'Wuthering Heights' etc obviously, but just thought I'd give it a wee mention all the same...

Calum, Monday, 26 August 2002 19:33 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Ben Lee? (ducks)

Sterling Clover (s_clover), Monday, 26 August 2002 19:39 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

emmitt rhodes - 'with my face on the floor'.

i don't know why i picked that.

fields of salmon (fieldsofsalmon), Monday, 26 August 2002 19:41 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Lil' Bow Wow.

Sterling Clover (s_clover), Monday, 26 August 2002 19:43 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Has anyone mentioned 'Acetone' by Kenickie?

Kenickie's first album had some AMAZING moments on it -- since I can't remember many of the song titles, I'll go with the single, "In Your Car."

Jody Beth Rosen, Monday, 26 August 2002 19:44 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Yeah, Kenickie, superb band obv. and 'Come Out 2 Nite' = Classic! teen anthem.

Plus 'Girl From Mars' + 'Oh Yeah' ~ Ash.

DavidM (DavidM), Monday, 26 August 2002 19:59 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Radish?

Keith Harris (kharris1128), Monday, 26 August 2002 20:09 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Alex Chilton didn't write The Letter (Wayne Thompson did), or any other Box Tops hit.

Martin Skidmore (Martin Skidmore), Monday, 26 August 2002 20:17 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"Girl From Mars by Ash!!!!"

Took the words right out of my mouth.

weasel diesel (K1l14n), Monday, 26 August 2002 21:18 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

mmmbop

mark p (Mark P), Monday, 26 August 2002 21:23 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

like a daydream by ride

keith, Monday, 26 August 2002 22:25 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Speaking of teen pop written by teenagers, is Twinkle any good?

Christine "Green Leafy Dragon" Indigo (cindigo), Monday, 26 August 2002 23:02 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

supergrass "caught by the fuzz"

electric sound of jim (electricsound), Monday, 26 August 2002 23:07 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Were Gahan/Martin Gore teenagers when they wrote "Photographic?" If so, I'm nominating that one.....or anything else off "Speak and Spell"

patrick, Monday, 26 August 2002 23:30 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Speaking of teen pop written by teenagers, is Twinkle any good?


Well, the original "Golden Lights" is terrific, and so is "Mickey", though it's a bit retro sounding for '68. Don't know much else, though--I've never heard her biggest hit, the motorcyle boy teen death ballad "Terry."

Arthur (Arthur), Monday, 26 August 2002 23:49 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Stevie Wonder co-wrote "Uptight (Everything's Alright)" and "I Was Made to Love Her" so those are my top two right there and I really doubt anything's going to displace them (although I'm sure there are plenty of worthy candidates, including "Why Do Fools Fall in Love?"). "Mmmbop", "Only in My Dreams", and "I Love Your Smile" (if Shanice wrote it) are somewhere in the second tier, with the Boys' "Thanx 4 the Funk" deserving a mention if only for having almost as much to do for provoking me to investigate P-Funk as 3 Feet High and Rising.

James Blount, Tuesday, 27 August 2002 03:10 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Were Gahan/Martin Gore teenagers when they wrote "Photographic?"

Vince Clarke -- and I believe he was, yes. (Gore only wrote a couple of songs on Speak and Spell and has never cowritten a song with Gahan -- indeed, Gahan's never written any song for Depeche at all!)

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 27 August 2002 14:06 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I think Stevie Wonder was 19 when he wrote "Signed, Sealed, Delivered" and he was definitely a teen when he cowrote "Uptight." How old was Vanessa Carlton when she wrote "A Thousand Miles?" (Sorry...)

Production values aside, Graham Smith of Kleenex Girl Wonder wrote about loads of amazing pop songs as a teenager which would have been top 40 hits in a sane universe. I'd pick "Tendency Right Foot Forward" as my favorite...it's like the Rushmore soundtrack as written and performed by its teenage protagonist.

I think Ellen Dedrick of the Free Design was a teen when she wrote "Never Tell The World"...not a hit but an unbelievably gorgeous and heartbreaking pop song. And Lesley Gore didn't write "You Don't Own Me" but she picked it herself, which is pretty amazing.

Clyde, Tuesday, 27 August 2002 19:12 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Lou Reed was 14 when he wrote "Heroin". Or so some article I read once said.

(Ben Folds wrote "Underground" when he was 17 as well)

Dom Passantino (Dom Passantino), Tuesday, 27 August 2002 19:14 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

The Shagg's First Album. Still a renown cult classic. Tearful moment when you find out that her companion is 'my radddioo'.

spiffy james, Tuesday, 27 August 2002 19:16 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Lou Reed was 14 when he wrote "Heroin".

You people have odd definitions for "Top 40-friendly, bubbly, girl/boy music."

Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Tuesday, 27 August 2002 19:17 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Weren't the Shaggs in their very early twenties when they recorded that, though?

(I was suprised too when I found that out.)

Christine "Green Leafy Dragon" Indigo (cindigo), Tuesday, 27 August 2002 20:03 (fifteen years ago) Permalink


Red Cross/Redd Kross were teenagers when they started, but they didn't really get pop (as defined above) until later.

nickn, Tuesday, 27 August 2002 23:06 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

sterling - j dupri still writes bow wow's rhymes, i thot

boxcubed (boxcubed), Tuesday, 27 August 2002 23:08 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

was kim salmon a teenager when he wrote 'frantic romantic'?

minna (minna), Wednesday, 28 August 2002 00:04 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

OMG I can't believe I forgot the all time best winner of this category ever -- Debbie Gibson, surely for Shake Your Love, Out Of The Blue, Foolish Beat.

She was a prefab dance-pop wave-rider who WROTE HER OWN SONGS. Now go write yr own...

Sterling Clover (s_clover), Wednesday, 28 August 2002 04:19 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Sterling, I mentioned her in the third post of this thread!

Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Wednesday, 28 August 2002 12:16 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Rockist answer: Teenage Kicks.

thom west (thom w), Wednesday, 28 August 2002 12:36 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

The Shirelles "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow" (written by Carole King and Gerry Goffin when King was about 18).

Frank Kogan (Frank Kogan), Thursday, 29 August 2002 05:45 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

X-Ray Spex! X-Ray Spex!

Carey, Thursday, 29 August 2002 12:37 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Michael Brown of the Left Banke was 17 when "Walk Away Renee" was a hit.

Curt (cgould), Thursday, 29 August 2002 13:53 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

MMMBop by Hanson

Jeff (Jeff), Thursday, 29 August 2002 16:40 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

didnt leslie gore and the shangri las have a hand in the writing. god leslie gore is good to grate.

anthony easton (anthony), Friday, 30 August 2002 00:54 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"Going to Pasalacqua" by Green Day

Kris (aqueduct), Friday, 30 August 2002 03:02 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I don't think any Shangri-La was ever involved in writing their songs, Anthony. They certainly aren't credited on any of the hits.

Martin Skidmore (Martin Skidmore), Friday, 30 August 2002 16:27 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Bingo by Catch.

Slump Man (Slump Man), Friday, 30 August 2002 22:47 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

fifteen years pass...

Old thread! I came up with a list of favorites..., with several songs mentioned in this thread.

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 12 January 2018 19:35 (three months ago) Permalink

Surprised no one mentioned Laura Nyro here. She was 19 when her first lp came out and it contained three future top 10 hits by other artists.

btw I doubt Corina recorded "Tempation" as a teen - my source says she was born in '63

Josefa, Friday, 12 January 2018 21:13 (three months ago) Permalink

just popping in to say that lorde sucks! kthx

#TeamHailing (imago), Friday, 12 January 2018 21:21 (three months ago) Permalink

Soto's list seems p decent though, gj

#TeamHailing (imago), Friday, 12 January 2018 21:22 (three months ago) Permalink

Beyonce was 19 when "Bootylicous" was released

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Friday, 12 January 2018 21:30 (three months ago) Permalink

Lisa Lisa was 16 when "I Wonder If I Take You Home" and "Can You Feel the Beat" came out (did not write them, p sure)

Josefa, Friday, 12 January 2018 21:40 (three months ago) Permalink

Van wrote "Gloria" when he was 18.

that's not my post, Friday, 12 January 2018 22:18 (three months ago) Permalink

If Will You Love Me Tomorrow is the greatest pop song ever then it's also the best teen pop song written by a teenager.

abcfsk, Friday, 12 January 2018 22:27 (three months ago) Permalink

Most of it ain't bubbly but do not sleep on Janis Ian's early material. Astoundingly precocious and legitimately good. She wrote 'Society's Child' at 13!

the smartest persin in the room (Old Lunch), Friday, 12 January 2018 22:37 (three months ago) Permalink

('At Seventeen' was the middle-aged rumination she dropped at the crusty old age of 24, after a decade in the biz.)

the smartest persin in the room (Old Lunch), Friday, 12 January 2018 22:39 (three months ago) Permalink

Absolute must for this thread: the Chantels (still 15 when their first singles were released in 1957). More obscure: Margaret Mandolph (13) and the incredible "I Wanna Make You Happy."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6voP88PZEk

clemenza, Friday, 12 January 2018 22:55 (three months ago) Permalink

(I think that's Bread's David Gates with the production credit--the single came out in 1965.)

clemenza, Friday, 12 January 2018 22:57 (three months ago) Permalink

If Will You Love Me Tomorrow is the greatest pop song ever then it's also the best teen pop song written by a teenager.

I think this might win, although Goffin was 21! I had no idea they were so young

Colonel Poo, Friday, 12 January 2018 23:15 (three months ago) Permalink

"Gimme Some Lovin'"

Newb Sybok (Doctor Casino), Friday, 12 January 2018 23:17 (three months ago) Permalink

What I meant to say above was that Arelene Smith of the Chantels was 15--the rest of them were older, I think.

clemenza, Saturday, 13 January 2018 02:48 (three months ago) Permalink

Question Mark & The Mysterians - 96 Tears

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Saturday, 13 January 2018 03:54 (three months ago) Permalink

Prince promoted the song by lip-syncing it with his band on The Midnight Special and American Bandstand, where he gave host Dick Clark an awkward interview, answering his questions with one-word answers.[4] Prince claimed to be 19 but was 21 at the time. Clark later said, "That was one of the most difficult interviews I've ever conducted, and I've done 10,000 musician interviews."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I_Wanna_Be_Your_Lover

was going to suggest Prince "I Wanna Be Your Lover" but

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Saturday, 13 January 2018 03:56 (three months ago) Permalink

If Will You Love Me Tomorrow is the greatest pop song ever then it's also the best teen pop song written by a teenager.

I think this might win, although Goffin was 21! I had no idea they were so young

― Colonel Poo, Friday, 12 January 2018 23:15 (yesterday) Permalink

this is what immediately came to mind. the best. carole king is the absolute best.

the early / mid 1960s stuff is so so so essential.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kY3gr_d8kCg

and this brenda lee cover

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knrJDz05dcM

budo jeru, Saturday, 13 January 2018 04:09 (three months ago) Permalink

Jackie DeShannon - Buddy

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dGoEH2Yve8w

she wasn't an established songwriter at the time, but I can easily imagine this becoming a hit if she'd pitched it to someone like Brenda Lee or Wanda Jackson. she wrote the underrated Brenda Lee song Funny Feelin a few years later when she was 19.

jesus and figs and science and the foo fighters (unregistered), Sunday, 14 January 2018 22:50 (three months ago) Permalink

How 'bout "Shivers" by Rowland S Howard?

attention vampire (MatthewK), Sunday, 14 January 2018 23:51 (three months ago) Permalink


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