Autostraddle Roundtable: Last Night a DJ Saved My Life


Lady Gaga & Lady Starlight '07: Photo byAngela Wieland

Lady Gaga & Lady Starlight '07: Photo by Angela Wieland

Hey, have you heard? We’re gonna have a party, it’s called Disco Rodeo! And as we eagerly anticipate getting drunkity-drunk-drunk with 220 other girl-on-girls on June 28th, our thoughts turn to serious things, such as: “what magical melodies will we be dancing to at the party of the century, as spun by DJ Lady Starlight of Lady GaGa’s Starlight Revue, DJ Carlytron and DJ Boom Boom?”

Because we’ve been serious at the Roundtable for the last two weeks, we went easy on ourselves this week and asked what song makes you jump up and scream OMG THIS IS MY JAM! at the club? You know, the club? Where all the girls go to get down?

That is the important question we ponder this week: what are your top I WANNA HEAR THIS AT THE CLUB songs of all TIME?

This week we invited the Intern Army to participate. Perhaps one of them will create a master playlist for you or something of that nature.

There’s a handful of tickets left at $10 and price will go up to $12 on Monday, wethinks. Or $15 at the door if you like to live on the edge (to get the discount this weekend while it’s still hot, price level “autostraddle,” code COWGIRL.)

Autostraddle Roundtable:
Last Night a DJ Saved My Life – Your TOP DANCE JAMS




What a terrible/AWESOME Roundtable topic! I want to say “anything by Madonna, Michael Jackson or Lady Gaga and every 90s dance hit ever made” but that would be a cop-out. Here’s my attempt to narrow my existence as I know it down to 5 songs (which is nearly impossible:)

Bizarre Love Triangle – New Order : This one time, Riese and I blissfully danced to this song at the Spinnaker Lounge on the Rosie ‘R Family’ Cruise. Also, everyone I know and love breaks it dowwwn when this is played. It’s a classic.

One More Time – Daft Punk: What a lovely duo that Daft Punk is. It’s difficult to choose just one of their songs to put on a list, but for me it would be this one. The tempo even allows for good guido-style fist-pumping action… not that I do that often… Just saying.

Boom Boom Pow – Black Eyed Peas: I’m weary about choosing a new song for such an important list, but you know… this one’s good. A keeper. Carlytron might agree.

It’s Tricky – Run D.M.C.: This speech is my recital. I think it’s very vital… to rock a rhyme! that’s right on time! ‘It’s Tricky’ is the title HERE WE GO!



AC/DC – “You Shook Me All Night Long” Def Leppard – “Pour Some Sugar On Me” – These are both just dirty/sexy classic rock songs that somehow everybody knows, loves, and wants to shout along to when drunk. I am not immune to them!


katrina-iconINTERN KATRINA:

As someone who actually freaks out and puts their hands up and belligerently yells “THIS IS MY JAM” all up in da club, I’m pretty excited about this.

That’s Not My Name – Ting Tings When lost in the heat of a totes kickass party, the songs that I most want to hear tend to be the ones that allow me to yell the same phrase over and over again. Katie White, lead singer of the Ting Tings, knows this. Heavy on the bass drum, laced with riotgrrrly-type vocals, and loaded with a “don’t-you-call-me-darling” attitude, “That’s Not My Name” never fails to get my hips shaking and my hands in the air.

A Cause des Garcons – Yelle Apparently I’m into dichotomy, because if I’m not yelling the same phrase repeatedly, I’m sloppily fudging my way through fast-paced French lyrics. Using a synth that’s crunchy but not overbearing, Yelle creates the perfect fusion of pop, techno, and dance while making you feel like you’re kind-of-almost a real Francophone.




You have got to be fucking kidding me with this, right guys? I can only pick 5? What if I pick more than 5, just to be a jerk? I could do that, you know…

These are all songs that I always play when I’m DJing because they’re my favorite songs to dance to. My favorite tracks are a mix of electro, pop, and hip-hop, as you will see here. So with apologies to Britney, Rihanna, the Pussycat Dolls, Salt ‘n’ Pepa, Gaga, Robyn, Sam Sparro, JT, all of 80s new wave and 90s freestyle and like 100 other artists, here’s my list of favorite jams:

Timbaland (feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.) – The Way I Are: This is hands down totes one of the best pop songs of all time, what with that catchy beat and all. Every time it comes on I shout, “OMG this is my JAM!” (yes, I actually say that, often and loudly) My only complaint with this song is that it’s too short. This is also where the world found out about the awesomeness that is Keri Hilson (she’s really hot, you guys… super talented too).

The Faint – Glass Danse: This song reminds me of college, when my friends and I discovered the Faint. During the chorus of this song, lightning shoots out of your fingers. Trust. They have tons of great dance songs, so I’ll say that runners-up would be “Take Me To the Hospital” (who knew injuries could be sexy??) and “Worked Up So Sexual” (if you ever saw me dance to that you’d think I was having a seizure… a DANCE seizure). Also, seeing this performed live will change your life.

thumbBeyonce – Get Me Bodied (extended mix): Thought I was gonna put “Single Ladies,” didn’t you? Too obvious. I love Beyonce, her songs are amazing (and I am totally seeing her live on the 21st, shriek!). The extended mix of this song (also the version used in the video, which is amazing) is like 6 minutes long and contains this insanely long outro where it’s basically just a gay boy’s dream. So naturally Cesar and I learned some of the choreography from the video, and whenever it comes on you betta believe we are right in the middle of the dance floor, pattin’ our weaves and doin’ our Naomi Campbell walks. Close second: “Upgrade U,” such an underrated song.

Moving Units – Anyone: This is a song by a band that most people have never heard of, but I cannot not play it when I DJ or make playlists or whatever. It’s really a perfect song. Great 80s disco beat, the bassline is hot, what else could you want in a party jam?

The Presets – This Boy’s In Love: Such a beautiful song (and video). Not the most overtly dancey song in the world but you can make it work. When I heard them play this live back in April I almost cried. The Presets are amazing, you can play pretty much any one of their songs to get the party started.

Anything by Missy Elliott: I added a 6th, so suck on this! Anything by Missy Elliott is guaranteed to get people moving, especially me. Stand out tracks: “Pass That Dutch,” “Lose Control” (feat. Ciara), “4 My People” (feat. Eve), and “Ching A Ling” (One time Robin and I were in LA at Truck Stop and the hot dancer girls danced to this on the bar and they were wearing boyshorts and hoodies so it’s pretty much the only thing we can think of when we hear that song).


hot-laura-icon2INTERN HOT LAURA:

Justin Timberlake: Summer Love: At parties, my favorite activity ever is shouting until somebody plays this song and then making everybody dance with me. also, justin is so fly, can sing, dresses amazingly, is funny, can dance, and is besties with ellen. basically, he’s my ideal woman.

Santogold: Starstruck: I once heard this song in an episode of csi: new york playing in the background while they examined evidence. if you’ve ever heard this song, you know that the only time it should ever be used as a soundtrack is if the people on screen are having sex. i.e. it’s too hot for words.




OH MY GOD, THIS IS IMPOSSIBLE. Narrowing my party playlists down to just 5 songs is a HUGE task – and I feel like there’s SO MUCH that I left out – the Sounds were crowded out at the last minute because I realised I’d named only bands with [mostly] chick singers. These are songs I would expect to hear at my own badass dance party:

The Pipettes – “Pull Shapes
The Pipettes combine two of my favourite eras of rock music – the girl groups of the 1960s and the “new” new wave of the early 2000s. They’re sort of like if Phil Spector held up Le Tigre at gunpoint (too soon?). This was the first song I ever heard by them, and it’s just absolute pure perfect pop bliss – the songITSELF is about how good the music is. Full disclosure: this song is #1 in my iTunes and always will be.

Siouxsie & the Banshees – “Cities in Dust
GOTH NIIIIGHT. One of the best songs ever from one of the best bands ever, and for my crowd of friends this song is the fucking BIBLE. Siouxsie songs wereMADE for dancing, and nothing else sounds better when I’m plastered.

Joan Jett & the Blackhearts – “Do You Wanna Touch Me?
OK, this one isn’t usually dance party fare, but this is my party and this song will always elicit an inappropriately loud positive response from me – moreso if I’m bombed (and let’s face it…). Odds are good I will shout along, and the friends accompanied to the party will regret being seen with me in public. I always secretly wanted the Distillers to cover this one.

Murder City Devils – “Boom Swagger Boom
For whatever reason, I’ve been on a Murder City Devils kick this week.. They make me feel more like a badass. This is a good song for the following activities: drinking whiskey, dancing, making out with sexy strangers. Best party ever.

The B-52’s – “Dance This Mess Around
It is not a party without the B-52’s. Sure, “Love Shack” may be more popular and “Mesopotamia” is better designed for dancing like an idiot, but “Dance This Mess Around” is THE jam. The song calls for the listener to do all sixteen dances, although it doesn’t list all of them – and the Camel Walk, the Aqua Velva, the Dirty Dog, the Shy Tuna etc. lend themselves to awesome interpretation.


x-iconINTERN X

Bell Biv Devoe-Poison Listen to this song and try not to do the running man, I dare you. I have found it impossible not to (and my running man looks more like a running octopus). This song came out when I was two years old but provides valuble life advice ”Never trust a big butt and a smile.”

Santigold-Creator I’m not a big hip-hop person except for Satigold. This is the only song I will ever attempt to rap along with, and if you’ve ever heard me do it it’s obvious I’ve missed my calling.



Live your Life – T.I. featuring Rihanna: because “never mind what haters say ” is sort of my favorite phrase right now.

Low – T-Pain: … because don’t you have a pair of “apple-bottom jeans” too?

To Be With You – Mr. Big: This one reminds me of 2003, which was both absolutely horrible and absolutely wonderful. And Riese. Also, Mr. Big’s hair is envious. I would KILL for that volume.



Kaki King- Lintoria—> Because it’s Kaki King and I love her. It is a song with great emotion and I have a lot of feelings when I listen to this song , all positive of course. The new EP is just incredebly good, a little more rough but it worked out really well ( I can go on about the psychology of Kaki’s lates ep but that would take me to far)

Noisettes- Don’t upset the rhythm—> I love their version. The singer has a great voice and the band creates some awesome athmosphere. This is a song I can truely go mental-dancy on.




Killing In The Name – Rage Against The Machine. This song is so powerful and raw and energetic. Most importantly, it has really good cowbell.

When I Come Around – Green Day. I hear the opening riff and I get excited. I sorta lost myself in their Dookie album as a kid, and the songs off it still have the ability to amp me up.

crystal-axel-rosePatience – Guns N’ Roses. What is not to love about Guns N’ Roses. This song makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, it’s perfect for when the party is winding down and someone picks up the acoustic guitar.

Supermassive Black Hole – Muse. Whenever this song comes on, I can’t help but to sing it. I’ve never been a singer, I can’t say this about any other song.

Addicted To Bass, by Puretone ft. Amiel. There was a time, as a teen, when I wore a lot of black and refused to listen to anything that wasn’t heavy rock. I still wear black, but this song really opened my eyes to the world of pop. I’ve put the clip below because it’s Australian and so you probably don’t know it. Go on, I dare you to not tap your foot.



My first choice would have to be Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond. Before you judge — know it’s for truly sentimental reasons. This song is played during the eighth inning of every Red Sox game. The whole crowd sings along. Last summer in Dublin I was walking around temple bar when I heard a crowd singing this song — I found my new home for a week. Also, I may or may not have taught a class of four-year-olds the chorus …

2. Blame it by Jamie Foxx just because it seems to be one of those songs I will only listen to while in a drunken state of mind. No one has said any Lady Gaga?


jess-rothschild-iconINTERN JESSn7

Blackstreet, “No Diggity” The first drag king troupe I saw choreographed a whole routine that ended with this song and it was the slickest.thing.ever.
Salt & Pepa, “Push It” I’m a child of the 80s. Alice Pieszecki. Do the math. Also, is it me, or is this song in perpetual rotation at gay bars in nyc?




Number One Classic that I Always Forget About But When I Hear It I Get So Happy I Want to Cry Song.

I Ran(So Far Away) – A Flock of Seagulls: I have a lot of memories associated with this song, some awesome and some just weird. For sure, I heart the 80s. This song came out in 1981 which happens to be the year of my birth. This reminds me of my friends from Ithaca College, it reminds me of driving across California that week with a Republican dude in the Coast Guard I dated for a hot minute AFTER college (which makes me LOL), and it reminds me of summer. Its also just an amazing song.2003_mtv_video_music_awards_b

Number One Song to Sing to in the Shower:

Womanizer – Britney Spears: I actually sing AND dance to this song in the shower which is both problematic because my tub is slippery (obvs) and disturbing. I work by myself most days, what do you want? This is actually not my most favorite Britney song, but I can’t really pick one. Radar, Toxic, or Break the Ice probably are my actual faves. Also, this is my default song because I dunno, maybe the lyrics are easy and its in my vocal range, ok? Who knows. I love Britney Spears. I do. Her concert was part of my Christmas present (Thanks Carly!). Happy Birthday Jesus!

Number One Song to Sing in my Car:

Smile – Lily Allen: Yup, I fake the accent. This song is just adorably fun and bitchy. I love what the British ladies are putting out there recently. I love Lily Allen and KT Tunstall and Duffy and Lady Sovereign and that Winehouse character and Kate Nash… love em. Last time I saw Lily in concert she was a little too messed up, swaying up at the mic with a beer in one hand and a cigarette in the other. To be fair, I was on my 5th red bull vodka.


ebradshaw-iconINTERN ELIZABETH

Oh sweet holy jesus. I’ve never been drunk enough to dance/freak out at a party. I’m more the head-bopping, toe-tapping type. I’m happy to see that Journey, Salt N Pepa and such already made peoples lists. So I’ll have to go with…

1. Bon Jovi- Dead Or Alive because it’s fun to belt out at bars.

2. Eminem- Without Me because… inside I’m an angry male?


jessica-keller-iconINTERN JK

“Don’t Stop Believin’” – Journey
No matter where I am – driving around, at work, at a party – you will always hear me yell, “MAH SONG!” as soon as the first few chords play. Not only is this song in my Top 5 Favorite Songs EVER list, but apparently I become about ten times more excited over this song when intoxicated. Totes known to air-bass play (best. rock. bass. line. ever.) while I sing along.

“Doin’ It” – LL Cool J (feat. LeShaun)
This one had to be my other pick for three reasons:
1) Jess R. snagged “No Diggity” already;
2) It’s been a jam of mine for over a decade;
3) I do a better LeShaun voice than LeShaun herself. I’m a sucker for female rap sections in songs, and my LeShaun impersonation never fails to draw looks of awe/amazement/bewilderment.

(I couldn’t let you guys in on my Barry Manilow and Fergie obsessions, otherwise “Copacabana” and “My Humps”/”London Bridge”/”Fergalicious” would’ve been listed here.) ;)




I Want You Back – The Jackson 5: It makes me want to dance like a gumball or something shiny and young and new.  

Umbrella – Rihanna: I don’t have that many super-light purely-fun memories from 2007, but many of the ones I do have are of this song. It’s one of those “why pop songs exist” songs and your heart is warmed by osmosis when you are hoodwinked into belting “when the sun shines we’ll shine together …”


Shout! – The Isley Brothers I can get a lot lower now. Jumping up and down and screaming is one of my Top Ten dance moves.

Unwritten Law – Up All Night: These were the first “rock” concerts I went to. The singer always went balls to the walls, drunk as a fucking barechested skunk, he’d always take off his shirt and everyone played in a way that made you feel like anything was possible, despite the fact that you were inevitably surrounded by 15-year-olds with so many feelings they had to wear little collars and put their feelings on their t-shirts.

Then I just have a massive tie that includes a lot of Britney Spears, a lot of Jay-Z, a lot of Madonna and a lot of music from the 50’s and 60’s back when people knew how to dance. And Footloose.


emily-choo-iconINTERN EMILY

Earth, Wind, and Fire – September I love this ‘cause it’s old school and I feel like you could just dance crazily, like arms thrashing and legs kicking but it’s okay ‘cause everyone else is doing it. And it’s super fun to sing and generally just be a fool for 3 minutes.

The next one was super hard to pick but I’m gonna have to go with my gangster side and say T-Pain – Church ‘cause this one really gets me going. This is the best when there are lots of people around and you can mosh around together and then clap at the “clap on clap off” parts. I’m like a woman posessed when I hear this song and I usually don’t go for this genre of music.


heidi-iconINTERN HEIDI

Michael Jackson”Billie Jean”– why?becuase as soon as I hear that little bass intro I immediately stop what I am doing and want to dance.I wish I could dance like MJ..but that will never happen.Also its funny to watch others try to dance like him when this song comes on.

Guns n’ Roses “Welcome to the Jungle”– I love GnR and this song makes me wanta drink a lot of jack daniels and have a crazy kick ass time. It also has great potential for air guitar! (axl’s another fun one to immitate his dance moves)



1. I recently heard the song Ego” by Beyonce on a JetBlue flight from NYC to Fort Lauderdale on one of their in-flight radio stations and have since become obsessed. I don’t know if I could dance to it, but if I heard it playing in a club, I would sing. I enjoy all of the lyrics and here’s a sampling: “I walk like this ‘cause I can back it up,” and “I talk like this ‘cause I can back it up,”. Those are some of the hottest words I’ve heard sung in quite some time. And having confidence and knowledge when it comes to who you are and your worth, aka an ego, is the sexiest and most attractive attribute one can have.

brooke-beyonceIn the spirit of our upcoming Disco Rodeo party (which sadly will not feature country music), I’ll throw some country out there. These songs would be my jam if we were at a crowded square dancing club or an awesome barn party:

2. Something Like That – Tim McGraw: Because it got me into country music. Hell yeah.

3. And speaking of hell yeah, “Hell Yeah” by Montgomery Gentry is a decent country song too. However, outside of the chorus, it’s a little “my dog died, my truck broke down and my wife left me” countryish. But if it started playing at one of the above mentioned events/venues, I would absolutely yell out, “That’s my jam!”.

4. The Devil Went Down to Georgia – the Charlie Daniels Band: This song is self explanatory.

5. The Hokey Pokey




I See Tinkerbell – Uh Huh Her: Firstly any song by my number one feeling Uh Huh Her. However I would prefer for the ladies from the band to play live in person, because it is not the same on record albums as it is when they are on the stage with their long hair.

Because of You – Kelly Clarkson: This song is not about me, it’s about your gay mom.

Anything by Snoop Doggy Dog: Especially I enjoy the song Lodi Dodi. I like to party. I don’t bother nobody. I’m a dog. Hit it. Word. Love Tinkerbell.

The Limbo Rock: Because I always win.


Pages: 1 2 3See entire article on one page

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!

the team

auto has written 715 articles for us.


  1. haha tink is I see tinkerbell a hidden track?..or maybe its on the new limited ed. vinyl…

    so happy the ones I almost picked but didn’t made the list somehow!( patience and do you wanta touch were in my top 5)
    Also looking forward to getting”drunkity-drunk-drunk with 220 other girl-on-girls” soon.

    • While putting together the roundtable —

      Alex: “does uh huh her have a song called I see tinkerbell?”
      Riese: “No.”
      Alex: “then what the hell? why’d she pick a song that doesn’t exist?”
      Riese: “Alex, you’re asking me to explain why my stuffed dog that I pretend is a real puppy picked a non-existent song for its top five songs.”

  2. Niiice, I definitely almost picked “One More Time” by Daft Punk as well. That song starts gentle, hits this great pulse, let’s you catch your breath, then brings it up and keeps it in that perfect spot until it lets you down easy. It’s an auralgasm.

    I also really really wanted to pick “Faith” by George Michael (which I may or may not have performed in a drag show back in college…)

  3. i love everything about this roundtable. particularly the parts by carlytron. my suitemate sophomore year of college played missy elliot’s 4 my people every day before she went out. and then we’d do shots…and then we’d make out. she is now happily married, but damn…those were some fond memories.

  4. Oh Carly I LOVE the extended Getting Bodied version! I learned some of the choreography too! I dance my (out-of-shape) ass off to the song everytime.
    My car could be busted, my boyfriends being an ass, my goldfish died, and a sprained ankle; and I will still get bodied!

    • i almost got into a fight all up in the club because someone tried to prevent me from getting bodied. i kid you not.

      • LOL. That’s amazing! I hardly ever dance at the club but this comes on and I show out!!

  5. Had I thought about my list for more than 2 minutes at 1:30am (I thought being impulsive might help me rank something for once…) I may have swapped out the Eminem for some Missy E but now that I see Carlytron has pretty much included her entire catalogue I feel better :D Except my #1 Missy pick/feeling right now would be We Run This (Stick It edit)…

  6. Lots of good picks, I’m so sad that I’ll miss it :( I like that people already suggested Missy, can’t really go wrong with her and Timbaland. As for LL? I’d pick Around the Way Girl myself. Anyways.

    How about something cheesy like I See You Baby (Shakin’ That Ass) by Groove Armada?

    You can’t go wrong with I Touch Myself by Divinyls.

    Add A Little Respect by Erasure for that 80’s feel.

    Another Night by the Real McCoys.

    Suavemente by Elvis Crespo for some Latin flair.

    Finally, this is going to sound odd but I heard a techno version of Jolene by Dolly Parton that was pretty frickin good. I’m not sure where I downloaded it from, maybe Rich at FourFour?

  7. there are a handful of songs i love that are a hit at local bars, but wouldn’t really make it too far anywhere else (think: irish drinking songs) –so, instead here are a couple of other picks:
    pink – u & ur hand (i can’t help myself..)
    yelle – je veux te voir (same reason as katrina’s yelle pick)
    wigfield – saturday night (because it never gets old)

  8. can we just note that my face = carly’s face backwards?

    in addition, this is about to become the greatest playlist my ipod has ever seen.

  9. Ohh good stuff! (:

    Just a susggestion here, but Paul Oakenfold’s Madonna – “Give It To Me” remix is lovely.

  10. madonna’s “intervention” — the dj ander standing remix

    or pretty much any of the “what it feels like for a girl” remixes

    Basically, Madonna, madonna, madonna, forever. theend.

  11. oh my, now I have to listen to “summer love”. this song happened when the summer was hot even where I lived and I’d drink white wine with a friend who was as heartbroken as me.

    also: “like a prayer” when you’re dancing with a lady you like. I’m cheesy when drunk, admitting it here first. (not)

    no diggity is where my roommate and me would simultaneously shout “our jam”. “I like the way you work is” is best said at any occasion whatsoever. actually, there is a really nice cover version/mash-up with “grandma’s hands” (though the “fanvideo” is rather odd here):
    so, no diggity is our partysong. the mash-up is the song we listen to when we’re doing 1000 piece puzzles in my room.

Comments are closed.