So You Think You Can Dance Christina Perri
Credit: Mathieu Young/Fox

I don’t remember how I got into So You Think You Can Dance, or which episode I watched first. But I do know that after one viewing, I was hooked. As someone who appreciates dances — and thoroughly enjoys a spontaneous dance party — I loved watching the choreographers and contestants work together to craft something memorable. Then there were the judges, whom I immediately enjoyed. But as I continued to watching SYTYCD, the show became about more than just dance. Suddenly, my iPod was benefiting from my addiction as well.

At this point, I’m confident in saying that the hidden reason — my ulterior motive, if you will — for watching this show is the music it’s helped me discover. Every routine needs a song, and if I can give advice to any of you, it’s to stop looking through iTunes for new and exciting artists. Instead, let SYTYCD‘S choreographers do the work for you.

From songs that haven’t quite made it big yet to music I never would’ve discovered on my own, So You Think You Can Dance alters my musical library every season. Take the show featuring A Great Big World’s “Say Something” before it became a hit, or launching the career of an otherwise unknown artist, like it did with Christina Perri’s “Jar of Hearts.” But one of my favorite things this show offers is different versions of a song I know well — Jessie J’s rendition of “We Found Love,” for example, which I never would’ve heard on my own.

As a big Jason Mraz fan, I’m ashamed to admit I didn’t own his acoustic version of “If It Kills Me” until after Travis Wall’s routine.

Two of my other favorite additions that I owe to the show: “Heartbreaker” by MSTRKRFT ft. John Legend and “Eyes” by Kaskade.

Look, I know this isn’t some crazy new discovery; I’m used to using television to find great music. But in terms of best track records (puns!), So You Think You Can Dance is up there with The O.C. and Grey’s Anatomy. So if your iPod could use a little variety, I’d suggest tuning in to the new season, which premieres Wednesday at 8 p.m. on Fox. Your ears will thank you.

Episode Recaps

So You Think You Can Dance

Nigel Lythgoe, Mary Murphy, and the viewers at home crown America’s Favorite Dancer.

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