|Artiste||Track||Album / comment / blank space||Year|
|1.||Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band||Big Eyed Beans from Venus||Clear Spot||1972||2.||The Velvet Underground||Venus In Furs||Velvets & Nico||1967||3.||Ike & Tina Turner||River Deep, Mountain High||Phil Spector Version||1966||4.||The Animals||The House of the Rising Sun||1964||5.||The Rolling Stones||Paint It Black||1966||6.||Buddy Holly||Peggy Sue||1957||7.||The Smiths||How Soon Is Now?||Hatful of Hollow||1984||8.||Beatles||Tomorrow Never Knows||Revolver||1967||9.||David Bowie||Heroes||1977||10.||Procul Harum||A Whiter Shade of Pale||1967||11.||Righteous Brothers||You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'||1965||12.||Four Tops||Reach Out||1967||13.||Roxy Music||Do The Strand||For Your Pleasure||1973||14.||Sex Pistols||Anarchy in the UK||1977||15.||The Smiths||Paint a Vulgar Picture||Strangeways, Here We Come||1987||16.||Pink Floyd||Arnold Layne||1967||17.||David Bowie||Life on Mars||Hunky Dory||1973||18.||Dexy's Midnight Runners||Geno||Searching for the Young Soul Rebels||1980||19.||The Kinks||Waterloo Sunset||1967||20.||Prince Buster||Al Capone||1965||21.||The Pogues||Sally MacLennane||Rum, Sodomy & the Lash||1985||22.||Jimi Hendrix||Purple Haze||1967||23.||The Who||My Generation||1966||24.||Undertones||Teenage Kicks||1978||25.||Sisters of Mercy||First and Last and Always||First and Last and Always||1985||26.||Troggs||Wild Thing||1966||27.||Eno||Baby's On Fire||Here Come the Warm Jets||1973||28.||B-52s||Dead Beat Club||Cosmic Thing||1989||29.||Roxy Music||Virginia Plain||1972||20.||Public image Ltd||Poptones||Metal Box||1979||31.||Frankie Goes To Hollywood||Relax||1983||32.||Stranglers||(Just Get A) Grip on Yourself||1976||33.||White Stripes||Fell In Love With A Girl||2001||34.||Cure||In Between Days||1985||35.||Slade||Coz I Luv You||1971||36.||Robert Wyatt||I'm a Believer||1974||37.||Soft Cell||Tainted Love||1981||38.||Prodigy||Firestarter||1996||39.||Joy Division||Love Will Tear Us Apart||1980||40.||Dead Kennedys||California Uber Alles||1979||41.||The Kinks||You Really Got Me||1964||42.||Soft Machine||A Certain Kind||Soft Machine I||1968||43.||Benny Goodman||Sing Sing Sing||1937||44.||Beatles||Strawberry Fields Forever||1967||45.||Leonard Cohen||Stranger Song||1966||46.||Lou Reed||Sad Song||Berlin||1973||47.||The Polyphonic Spree||Soldier Girl||2002||48.||Underworld||Born Slippy||1996||49.||Catatonia||International Velvet||International Velvet||1997||50.||Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band||Moonlight On Vermont||Trout Mask Replica||1970|
Like Tony Curtis said in Some Like It Hot, I do prefer grown-up stuff Beethoven's probably my main man.
However I only got into that in my teens and I also like a lot of kiddie toons like the above. After all, the sixties were my formative years (hence the glut of mid-sixties tracks) and, as Wordsworth said of that era:
Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive,
But to be young was fuckin' Ace!
Even so, as you can see (and despite the glut of mid-sixties tracks), I'm not one of those old gits who moan that "there's nowt as good now as in my young day". It's really depressing to hear some of my contemporaries sounding like my father back in '65, comparing that "big prancing girl" Mick Jagger somewhat unfavourably to his belovéd Glenn Miller. The great thing about being my age is being able to listen to everything (including Miller) and not having to worry about whether what I like is cool or not. Oh yeah, and seeing those bands that Dad said wouldn't be heard of in 20 years still selling, and in some cases still performing, after 40!
Speaking personally, I always thought the Fab Four and Dylan were monstrously overrated (that's Bob Dylan, not the rabbit from the Magic Roundabout, who is obviously a god). And while every generation throws a hero up the pop charts, there's never been a shortage of hard-to-avoid commercial pap alongside the cutting-edge stuff that you have to seek out (usually by listening to St John Peel).
My preferences tend to be a long way from the middle of the road, though good dance numbers like Kylie's Can't Get You Out Of My Head or some perfectly produced pure Pop like Natalie's version of Torn have been nudging to get in. On the whole though, if I want nice tunes or meaningful complexities, I'll go to Haydn symphonies or Beethoven string quartets and if I want bedsitter angst, Radiohead and Coldplay (yawn) can't touch Schubert Songs (check out Die Winterreise) or Mahler Symphonies.
It's when I want my head caving in or my guts churning, I turn to Led Zep, AC/DC and co. and if I wanna boogie on down, I'll put on Fat Boy Slim or a Boy George Ministry mix (not that these guys made it onto this page). Oh, and I like Jazz too and a lot of music from other cultures (though I despise the term "World Music", with its faintly patronising implications). My only blind spots are musicals and Country&Western and there are exceptions even there.
So, when I hit 40, I decided to list a track for each year of my life (not from each year - note the glut of mid-sixties tracks), for my own amusement (we must find some way to fill in time 'twixt cradle and grave, mustn't we?). They're listed in only the vaguest of order (except for the undisputed number one) and that order (as well as some of the contents) would no doubt be totally different if I compiled the list again from scratch. In fact the last five or so have been added in a hurry without much thought so I may even change them from time to time when I remember some number from my past.
But, as old Billy-boy said, all comparisons are odorous and, as Zen teaches us, all value judgements are illusory. So it's just (as Peter Snow says) a bit of fun. It just seems that half the nerds out here in webland feel they should share their faves with us and lists do seem to have a strange fascination for some people. If you can't beat 'em . . .
Naturally, some of the songs are here for sentimental reasons (hence the glut of mid-sixties tracks - eg I had my first snog to You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin', which she promptly did). But the majority (including You've Lost...) are there because I think they're great. A cursor over a spotty comments box might reveal more . . .
Maybe I should list my favourite albums too - a very different set. Some of the above tracks are the only good thing in a pile of cack. (Guess who bought the whole Belle and Sebastian album on the strength of the stonking single, The Boy With The Arab Strap? Then again, I bought an arab strap too, so it wasn't a complete waste.) And some great albums don't have a track that really stands out - but I'd exchange Gomez' Bring It On, for many of the tracks above as a satisfying experience. So what else? The Velvet Underground and Nico of course. Trout Mask Replica, Hatful of Hollow, Roxy Music, Soft Machine Third, Lexicon of Love, Signing Off, Scary Monsters, Maxinquaye, Back in the DHSS ...
No, I can't be arsed. No more lists. I'm bored now. Let's go back to the website.