Yes, yours truly and my
That said, posting will be irregular until our return. Safely, one assumes.
But in the meantime, here's a fun little project for all of us to wile away the idle hours until regular stuff resumes.
POST-ELVIS POP/ROCK/SOUL SONGS THAT SHOULD BE ON EVERY CRITIC'S LIST OF THE GREATEST THINGS OF ALL TIME BUT FOR WHATEVER REASON RARELY ARE!!!
No arbitrary rules of any kind, you're welcome very much, but if I disagree with your picks I will be more sympathetic to them if they were actual singles rather than album cuts. I should also add that all of these song choices are obviously subjective and based on my own incredibly ancient sensibilities. I mean, shit -- I'm a zillion years old; who cares what I like.
And so, without any further ado, here's my totally top-of-my-head top twelve.
12. Kirsty MacColl -- They Don't Know
One of these days, if I'm ever diagnosed with a fatal disease, I'm gonna find the shithead tourist who ran their speedboat over Kirsty while she was vacationing with her kids, thus killing her. And then blow their fucking brains out with a pistol. Seriously -- there's a special circle in hell reserved for that jackass.
11. The Move -- Tonight
I believe this was the very last thing Roy Wood and Jeff Lynne recorded before they transmogrified into ELO. In any case, an all but perfect power pop record.
10. Shocking Blue -- Serenade
I love these guys (and their late lead singer Mariska Veres) big time. This song, by genius auteur Robbie van Leeuwen, is particularly amazing; consider the intro, which features finger-picked acoustic guitar over scratchy electric rhythm and goes on for almost a minute before the vocals enter.
9. Prince -- Guitar
Have I mentioned that the only upside to the tragic early death of Prince last year is that all his stuff is finally available on YouTube? This one, which dates from sometime in the 'aughts, is sly, funny, and features great -- quel surprise -- guitar work. Why was this not a hit?
8. Marvin Gaye -- Ain't That Peculiar
This is technically an r&b record, but like lots of Motown stuff, it's pretty much indistinguishable from straight-ahead rock-and-roll. One of the most exciting singles of the Sixties, no matter how you classify it.
7. Elvis Presley -- Ain't That Lovin' You Baby
This is an outtake, which didn't surface till the 80s (I believe) on a posthumous compilation LP celebrating Elvis as blues singer. The previous officially released version has a lot of extraneous stuff (lame background vocals, etc.) but this one is just great kick-ass rock by the King and a tough as nails little supporting band.
6. The Easybeats -- Heaven and Hell
Vanda and Young's 60s masterpiece.
5. Marcus Hook Roll Band -- Natural Man
Vanda and Young's 70s masterpiece.
4. The Byrds -- Lady Friend
David Crosby's swansong with his pioneering folk-rockers, and possibly the best song he ever wrote (this is the 80s remixed version with overdubbed drums by the guy in Crosby's then touring band -- Byrds purists don't like it, but I do.) The Flamin' Groovies, who have good taste in these matters, did a very nice cover of it, BTW.
3. The Beach Boys -- Trader
The genius of Carl Wilson. May I just say, and for the record, that if anybody tells me the Beach Boys were white bread bullshit then I'm gonna take a hostage? Thank you.
2. Stealer's Wheel -- Everyone's Agreed That Everything Will Turn Out Fine
The incredible single version (psychedelic power pop doesn't get any better). Avoid the album re-make like the plague
And the number one best post-Elvis (should be an acknowledged classic and if you disagree with this assessment I will come to your house and fart in your general direction) song quite obviously is...
1. Nazz -- Open My Eyes
The first time I ever heard this -- which I bought on the recommendation of a Jon Landau review in Rolling Stone (yeah, I know) I felt like my head had been split open. I still think it's the perfect rock record.
Alrighty then -- what would YOUR choices be?
And have a great weekend, everybody!!!
[h/t and inspiration by our good pal Sal Nunziato]