Saturday, July 31, 2004

Essential Music

No real plans on this long weekend so I'm just doing some DIY projects around the house and listening to the radio. Right now there's a show on CBC 2 called 50 Tracks, with four panellists choosing what they feel are the top 50 songs on the recorded music era by decade (today they are in the 1950’s).

Now, I consider myself more knowledgeable about popular music then your average person on the street, but I’ve never even heard of some of these tunes! I know music preferences are a deeply personal thing but Mel Torme over Elvis? Hank Snow over Johnny Cash or Patsy Cline? I don’t think so!

So, your assignment is to leave me a comment about what you believe are the most essential songs or artists in each decade from the 1950’s to the 1990’s. This is a good site if you need some help. I love a lot of the music prior to the 50’s but to keep this easier, let’s just consider the last 50 years.


Anonymous said...

Hey Buddy,
Cool site. I'm just checking email and listening to Lenny Bruce talking about kids getting high for the first time on model airplane glue. This looks totally professional and costs a fortune. Love the picture of you and Rebecca on the beach. I thought you lost a leg and you still looked so happy. Love the lists, htat is so you. I've been listening to 50 tracks almost everyday. You're right, where do some of these songs come from. Here's a list from my journal of lessons learned on the road :

1) Never pass up a chance to pee.
2) Nothing is as easy as 1..2..3.., that's why decimals were invented.
3)i) You are always a better driver than the next guy.
ii) You are never as good a driver as you believe you are - ask your spouse.
4) Bungee cords will ALWAYS stretch, a little bit more. Trust me.
5) Ignorance and brute force will always win out over quality engineering.

Anyways, talk to you later. I passed my pre-interview testing and my first aid and CPR. Melanie is going to put the finishing touches on my resume so I can hand in my application to Waterloo Regional Police. They are accepting until the end of August and won't be looking until September so I'll keep you upddated. Talk to you soon. Rob.

James said...

Tough call. I've never been a fan of 50s music, in general, so I won't comment on the 50s at all. And I don't think I can say who "the greatest" are without being obvious, so here are some bands I've enjoyed from each of those decades, who perhaps wouldn't immediately come to mind. Thus, a highly idiosyncratic list:

1960s - The Kinks, The Stooges
1970s - The Buzzcocks, Devo, Magazine, Talking Heads, The Ramones
1980s - The Fall, The Cure, The dB's, The Feelies, Mission of Burma, Pixies, The Smiths, The The, Squeeze, The Wedding Present
1990s - PJ Harvey, Nirvana, My Bloody Valentine, Pavement, Björk, Beck, Radiohead, Modest Mouse, Built To Spill, Spoon
2000s - Pedro the Lion, Wilco, Death Cab for Cutie, Outkast, Interpol

Anonymous said...

I've been listening to that show as well, and the 50s are a difficult decade (well, they all are, the closer you are to them...) - there's jazz, country, the birth of rock and straight-ahead popular music all vying for importance. I think the omission of Buddy Holly was pretty bad & that the host was right to nominate Sam Cooke, but it was the wrong decade - his best stuff was a bit later on.

The 60s was done pretty badly I think - no girl groups, no Beach Boys, no composers like Bacharach or Jimmy Webb, not to mention no Hendrix, Joplin or Doors. And the Who & Aretha Franklin songs nominated were the wrong ones - oh well.

Essentials from the 50s - Elvis ("Mystery Train"), the Flamingos (hope I have that right) ("I Only Have Eyes for You"), Chuck Berry ("Maybelline"), Sarah Vaughan and Buddy Holly ("Peggy Sue") & Frank Sinatra, though what by him I'm not sure

60s - Beatles ("In My Life" or "Ticket to Ride"), Beach Boys ("Good Vibrations" or "God Only Knows"), Aretha Franklin ("I Say a Little Prayer" or "Respect"), Glen Campbell ("Witchita Lineman"), Jimi Hendrix ("Voodoo Chile [Slight Return]") and something from Spector's Wall of Sound (Ronettes, probably)

70s - ABBA (anything), Kraftwerk ("Trans-Europe Express"), Joni Mitchell ("Big Yellow Taxi" or "A Case of You"), Chic ("Good Times"), The Ramones ("Rockaway Beach") and The Clash ("Complete Control").

80s - Talking Heads, Madonna, The Smiths, Bruce Springsteen, Cocteau Twins, Public Enemy, REM

90s - Pavement, PJ Harvey, Nirvana, Massive Attack, Stereolab, Beck

00s - Stephen Malkmus, The Paperbacks, Broken Social Scene, Manu Chao, Metric