Last month California celebrated its 172nd birthday as the 31st state in America - a perfect excuse for "The Playlist" to look at songs that talk about the many spots inside The Golden State.

Over the years, there have been hundreds of songs that have referenced Cali and coming up with just 20 songs proved a bit taxing.  The Red Hot Chili Peppers have 3 great songs about their home state, but I limited them to one entry here - may not be fair, but SoJO is "South Jersey's Own Variety" so I hope to live to that brand here.

There are classic songs that could be chosen for The Playlist, but keeping it as fresh as possible means "California Dreamin'", "California Girls", and "Hotel California" will not be included.  You also will not see James Taylor going to California in his mind, but you will see many stops on the West Coast from San Francisco, to the L.A. area, through some major roads, and cut back north to Oak-Town.

Enjoy this journey that brings rock, rap, pop, and TV themes that represent the great state of California in The Playlist:

Weezer -- Beverly Hills (where the elite live and breathe)

Collective Soul -- Hollywood (the official song of American Idol in Season 7)

Katy Perry -- California Gurls (1st of 5 straight #1 songs off her Teenage Dream CD)

Hole -- Malibu (off to the beaches outside L.A.)

Everclear --Santa Monica (getting closer to the City of Angels)

Sheryl Crow -- All I Wanna Do ("This is L.A.!")

Guns 'N Roses -- Welcome To The Jungle (the unofficial rock anthem about L.A.)

Goo Goo Dolls -- Big Machine (the band's song about the people and the way of life in L.A.)

Tom Petty -- Free Fallin' (references L.A.'s Mulholland Drive and the suburb of Reseda)

Red Hot Chili Peppers -- Under The Bridge (need to mention "Californication" and "Dani California", but this is the Anthony Kiedis' homage to L.A.)

Phantom Planet -- California (the theme to The O.C. on Fox between 2003-2007)

Coolio -- 1, 2, 3, 4 (because there is ("Ain't no party like a West Coast party")

Depeche Mode -- Route 66 / Behind The Wheel (driving through the southern California highway to a #1 Dance hit in 1987)

Motley Crue -- Girls, Girls, Girls ("Dancing down on Sunset Strip")

2Pac / Dr. Dre -- California Love (#1 smash in 1995)

Richard Marx -- Don't Mean Nothing (his song about Hollywood went to #3 in 1987)

Mat Kearney -- Nothing Left To Lose (One-Hit Wonder of 2006 who refereced "A kid from Oregon by way of California)

Alanis Morissette -- Uninvited (from the City Of Angels soundtrack that went #4 in 1998)

Train -- Save Me San Francisco (wrapping up in the Bay area...)

MC Hammer -- U Can't Touch This (....and ending this week with the "Super dope homeboy from the Oak-Town)



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