Now, after two seasons, the Fox series opted to make its own music. During Tuesday night's episode, the kids of McKinley High created a set list of new songs that reflected the show's message, all while paying homage to the tunes that they've previously covered.
Gleeks have had a chance to hear some of the originals, namely "Loser Like Me," "Get It Right" and "Hell to the No" for a few weeks now. Ryan Seacrest debuted "Loser Like Me" and "Get It Right" on his radio show in late February, and both songs are featured on Glee: The Music, Volume 5, which was released on March 8. Meanwhile, all three numbers have been available for listening on Gleethemusic.com, but fans finally got to enjoy the songs in context with the story.
While gearing up for Regionals, some New Directions members came up with their own songs. In addition to the three radio-ready tunes previously mentioned, there were two silly serenades whose literal message called to mind this week's viral sensation, Rebecca Black's "Friday." Santana (Naya Rivera) sang a dedication to her smiley beau Sam (Chord Overstreet) called "Trout Mouth," Puck professed his admiration for his zaftig girlfriend Lauren Zizes (Ashley Fink) with "Big Ass Love," and Rachel (Lea Michele) wrote a very literal tune about being sibling-free, "Only Child."
The first of the big three originals came from Mercedes (Amber Riley), an ode to defiance called "Hell to the No." The soulful singer belted lyrics like, "Mama said, 'Get your ass outta bed'/ I said, 'Hell to the no,' " while accompanied by a foot-stomping beat from the band.
The Mercedes original (there's even a reference to her previous tater-tots crusade in there) was reminiscent of an earlier Riley performance: her octave-raising cover of Jazmine Sullivan's "Bust Your Windows" in season one.
But Riley wasn't the only actress with a solo standout. Lea Michele loaned her trademark voice to the ballad "Get It Right." The song, which has hints of prior "Glee" favorites such as Paramore's "The Only Exception" and Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse of the Heart," is about Rachel's struggle to get over ex-boyfriend Finn (Cory Monteith). The Golden Globe-nominated star sings, " 'Cause my best intentions keep making a mess of things/ I just want to fix it somehow/ But how many times will it take for me to get it right?"
That was soon followed by "Loser Like Me," a song that's something of a lyrical Cliff's Notes about the show itself. Keeping in line with the recent trend of "It's good to be different" tunes such as Lady Gaga's "Born This Way," Katy Perry's "Firework" and Pink's "Raise Your Glass" (the latter two have also been covered on the show), the song is a spirited, if not slightly corny number.
The inspirational pop ditty, which along with "Get It Right," was written by "Glee" music producer Adam Anders along with pop mainstay Max Martin, was about New Directions' response to Coach Sylvester's (Jane Lynch) endless taunting and scheming against them. It featured lines like, "Pushed me up against the locker/ But hey, all I do is shake it off/ I'll get you back when I'm your boss."
"Get It Right", "Hell to the No" and "Loser Like Me" are all currently available for download on iTunes.