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The Back to the Grind Mixtape

For many of us, the day after Labor Day marks the official end of summer. New York City schools start on Wednesday and the next major American holiday is far off on the horizon. In homage to working hard and daydreaming about telling your boss to “Shove this Jay-Oh-Bee,” here's a mixtape to help make the return to the daily grind a little more bearable—at least until Thanksgiving.

 

 

 

Side A Workin' 9 to 5

Track 1: “9 to 5” by Dolly Parton — 1980: Most of us work longer than 9 AM to 5 PM these days, but Dolly's song still rings true: (Workin') Nine to five, for service and devotion/You would think that I/Would deserve a fair promotion/Want to move ahead/But the boss won't seem to let me/I swear sometimes that man is out to get me...

 

Track 2: “Manic Monday” by The Bangles — 1986: Doesn't it always feel just like this at the beginning of the week? I wish it were a Sunday/'Cause that's my funday/My I don't have to runday/It's just another manic Monday.

 

Track 3: "A Hard Day's Night" by The Beatles — 1964: It's been a hard day's night, and I've been working like a dog/It's been a hard day's night, I should be sleeping like a log...Truer words were never said. Bring back the shorter work days!

 

Track 4: “It's All About the Benjamins" by Puff Daddy feat. Notorious BIG, The Lox, Lil' Kim — 1996: This is the stuff that dreams are made of. Tryin to get my hands on some Grants like Horace/Yeah livin the raw deal, three course meals/Spaghetti, fettucini, and veal/But still, everything's real in the field...

 

Track 5: “She Works Hard for the Money” by Donna Summers — 1983: Don't forget to tip twenty percent! It's a sacrifice working day to day/for little money just tips for pay...

 

Track 6: “Looking for the Time (Workin' Girl)” by Nanci Griffith — 1988: Don't waste this workin' girl's time: If you ain't got money...take it down the avenue/'Cuz I ain't got time for you...until daylight...

 

Track 7: “Money for Nothing" by Dire Straits — 1985: Hindsight is alwys 20-20. I shoulda learned to play the guitar/I shoulda learned to play them drums...

 

Track 8: “Small Stakes" by Spoon — 2002: Even Spoon gets stuck in a rut... And small stakes bring you where you're caught in a rut/You feel so uptight you just want to throw it all up.

 

Track 9: “Maggie's Farm" by Bob Dylan — 1965: Resist the impulse to conform! Well, I try my best/To be just like I am/But everybody wants you/To be just like them...

 

Track 10: “Shove this Jay-Oh-Bee" by Canibus with Biz Markie — 1999, from the Office Space soundtrack: Your co-workers are talking too loud for you to ignore them/It affects your occupational performance/You wonder why your work load is so enormous/Because your boss just laid off three quarters of the whole office... (Note: We couldn't find this video online, but here's a spoof that's worth watching!)

 

Side B T.G.I.F.

What are your favorite TGIF tunes? Please let us know by posting a comment below!

Full disclosure: This mixtape's DJ is Mansoor Khan, who works for 1199 SEIU-UHE, the country's largest local union. In addition to being an excellent mixologist, Khan is more than willing to talk to you about unionizing your workplace.