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GUILTY PLEASURES OF 2005

They’re the songs that, despite one’s best efforts, enter the brain and take up unoccupied space for a long time. Chris M. Junior reveals the five hits from 2005 that he secretly hoped to hear on his car radio.
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1. “Behind These Hazel Eyes” by Kelly Clarkson (above)
It’s still hard to accept that Clarkson took a shortcut to stardom via American Idol. The quality of this song — great chorus, powerhouse singing and rock-star drumming — makes it a little easier.

2. “Lonely No More” by Rob Thomas
A great rhythm track and a catchy “whoa oh” section aren’t enough to erase his Matchbox Twenty mistakes, but “Lonely No More” shows that, like the Santana smash “Smooth,” Thomas does his best work away from his band.

3. “You’ll Think of Me” by Keith Urban
Any artist who can sell a line as cringe-worthy as “Take your cat and leave my sweater” deserves a pat on the back.
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4. “We Be Burnin’ ” by Sean Paul (above)
Who the hell knows what the lyrics really are — one line seems to say, “Just gimme the geese and we be clubbin,’ yo” — but the hooks are hard to miss.

5. “When You’re Gone” by Bryan Adams and Pamela Anderson
Forget about making a joke along the lines of “Sure Anderson can sing: She has a great set of lungs.” She sticks mostly to cooing in the background and sounds just fine on this better-than-expected Adams rocker.

— By Chris M. Junior