To say the The Simpsons is currently having a “moment” ignores the fact that beloved show about dysfunctional yet lovable yellow family from Springfield continues to be one of the wittiest, most heartfelt shows in the history of the medium. For a quarter of a century, we have been treated to the cannonball shenanigans of Homerpalooza, dozens of exhortations to “Eat my shorts!” and Lisa’s wistful, adept sax playing. But Lisa’s jazzy inflections were not the only musical moments–one of the best parts of the show were always the guest musical performances. From “Weird Al” to James Brown, we were always given quirky, often self-effacing, caricatures of and insights into artists who are timeless or were de rigueur (how were the Baha Men possibly on the show twice? And more importantly: Who let the dogs out?). In every case, like George Harrison being less important to Homer than a plate of brownies, the moments were always knee-slappers.
To celebrate the beginning of the 26th season of The Simpsons this Sunday, September 28, we compiled a playlist that includes some of our favorite musicians that have appeared throughout the history of the show. Not only did we want this playlist to represent classic moments from series–Barry White summoning snakes with his alluvial baritone–but we wanted the playlist to feel like a time capsule, a compendium of tracks that will hopefully bring you back to a certain moment in time, just like old episodes of The Simpsons still do.
Enjoy our Simpsons playlist below, and definitely let us know what artists you would put on this mix in the comments below and on Twitter.