Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Lists schmists!

The idea that anyone can compile the GREATEST Music List of All Time is just plain stupid.
TIME INC. has come out with such a list and proves my theory..
go ahead see for yourself here..2006/100albums.

To begin with Music Critics are usually wannabe wankers and professional hangers on who are trying to impress others by being associated with real Artists.
Music is a completely subjective experience.

Common sense should dictate that compiling GREATEST lists is an excercise in futility, but people love lists because they are lazy and they delight in comparing themselves to others and need to make sure that they are listening to the 'right' stuff!

What sheer nonsense.
GREATEST as a noun is one of the most overused and abused words in our lexicon.
It is now as meaningless as the term SALE.

Deciding which criteria to use is important to note..are the results established by
albums sales?,
4,000 online voters?
Heay Rotation lists determined by Radio Station Program Directors?
Random surveys?

We like songs because of our individual interpretations or memories of specific circumstances that these songs invoke.
In some songs we listen for certain instruments, melody, guitar solo, drum line, chorus, bridge, intro, message, lyrics, imagery, power, emotion, or atitude.

My coming of age decade was the 70s therefore my GREATEST songs ever list would consist of an inordinant amount of bands or songs from that era.
Albums that I blasted on my stereo in those carefree days are featured to the right.

For whatever reasons I connected to these particular bands and there is nothing that can ever replace those memories.

You also have to take into account the many aspects of your music preferences.
My music Library list was originally divided by Artist, Song, Album, Decade, Genre, Mood, # and length of Tracks..quite tedious.

When my hard drive imploded I reorganised the 5,000 songs that I currently 'must have' on a much simpler scale and settled (via osmosis) on Artist/Track/Length.

One of my books titled GREATEST ALBUMS OF ALL TIME listed the 70s as the number one decade with 31% of the votes followed closely by the 60s & 80s which are tied in a dead heat @ 22.% each.
The 90s sits @ 17% and the 21st Century is starting to generate more thoughtful music than the dreadful 90s ever there is hope!

As you can see the huge influence of the Baby Boomers (guilty) who seriously outnumber any successive generations will continue to dominate every list unless they are specifically marketed to GenX and Y kids.

What about your favorite songs?

I still think that your 'coming of age/still developing brain' imprints and stores the strongest responses to music.

Although I have discovered plenty of great songs since the 70s thanks to my children, I can't imagine that there will ever be a another eclectic period like the 70s when so many different genres came of age.

For whatever reason the UK is my personal centre of the modern music universe.
I would estimate that 75% of all of my favorite bands from any decade are British.

Perhaps it is because of our Motherland connection.
Growing up in Canada we were bombarded by American and Brit Music along with a smattering of Canadian Content..
but the most creative, interesting, sounds came from the UK..
and still do!



  1. Good question! I used to say to anyone who would listen that the '80's were BY FAR the most interesting and progressive decade of music. I've come to realize that most people will vote for the decade that they were in high school. Music was extremely important in our development, especially socially.

    As for why the Brits...I have no idea. I'm sure some people will come up with some great ideas. I challenge Cherrypie to come up with the first one.

  2. brian,
    C'mon the 80s paled in comparison to the 70s when Rock, Pop, Rap, New Wave, Punk, Reggae, Disco, R&B, Soul, Funk, Synth, Orchestral, Folk, Blues, Heavy Metal and Jazz were all out and about!
    The 80s introduced danceable tunes back into the mainstream and Video killed the Radio Star. It was the beginning of the end for just listening to music...although I do listen to a lot of 80s I can't compare it to the 70s. Sorry.

    I think that the Brits a distinct advantage in their favour..
    the most obvious edge came from their attempt to Colonise the planet...the British Empire had accumulated residual influences from around the world..remember nehru collars! was the opposite of the Monroe Doctrine Fortress of Solitude that the USA had become.

    Eventually this multicultural diversification blossomed during the 60s into a free flowing well to draw it had a Central point that capitalised on Fashion and Fad called LONDON.Oddly enough it was the Rhythym and Blues from the American south that was transformed into a supernova by young Brits into modern Rock N Roll..they energized the groundwork that Elvis had started when he introduced 'black' music to white audiences.

    This was happening in England while back in the States 'coloured' people still had to eat at separate cafeterias.

    just a thought.

  3. Anonymous3:15 p.m.

    The 70's for me! All the stuff you've listed in your comment above!
    I am afraid the 80's didn't do anything for me! Can't remember much from that decade!

  4. 2 of my favourite bands are Canadian, The Tea Party (broken up), and Our Lady Peace.

    MAybe it is the system of government, if you still have a monarchy you can really stick it to the man, even if it is a female man. The sense of rebelion in the masses possibly feeding that. Hense the best punk rock was British sex pistols, the clash.. Rock punk,goth etc will unways have an underlining spirit of rebelion.

    Other genres i am not so sure.

    I wonder what people would think of me just from my MP3 collection, it jumps from marilyn manson, to The wiggles, to cradle of filth, to the Russian Red Army Choir. a little disjointed

  5. Im such a music buff I can even go to the '40s and really like a song cos of it's lyrics and music. 70s, 80s, 90s etc they all had their share of fame.

    Brits? cmon HE not always. I think every nationality had their superstars. Frank Sinatra, ABBA, Elvis, Beatles, Nirvana, Queen, The Doors, Men At Work etc etc they all came from various places on Earth. So why d u think it's mostly Brits?


  6. I moved this for you buddy...
    AnonymousBlogger said...

    Favorite songs? Hmm. I could list them, but they would mean nothing to you I'd imagine.

    I think my mom and dad would probably say most of their favorite musicians are from the US/UK as well.

    Thankfully, if you were to go into a Universtity or high school in Canada right now (or just ask your own kids), I think you'd find that a lot of our favorite artists are actually Canadian. We're making great music right now.

    4:28 PM

  7. Why is that? Because it was the best music ever. Led Zepplin. Yes. The Who. Jethro Tull. Traffic. The Rolling Stones. Cream. I could go on, but I think I need to go search YouTube for some songs I haven't heard in a while..

  8. I think you'd love MY playlist, HE, especially my Weird Al collection.......grin.

  9. anodominiblogger,
    I have 21 and 19 year old daughters who make me listen to the latest bands..which is fair..I made them listen to all of my music and always played the original versions of remakes for them. They know exactly what I look for and that's how I found the Fray song that plays on this post.

    There are some great Canuck bands..some of which get played to death thanks to Canadian Content requirements ala CRTC.
    Actually I think that today's music is a huge improvement over the last decade which was all image image image...there is hope.

    HELLO Miss Celania!
    I'm not sure why? I told brian my theory in the second comment but I think that it was a harmonic convergence of sorts. There was a huge glob of young people coming of age and the marketplace responded. There hasn't been anything like it since becuase there has never been another Baby Boom.

    THE michael,
    I love weird Al!! White and Nerdy is awesome. It is one thing to parody songs just for the fun of it but from a marketing standpoint it is sheer genius!
    I'd love to exchange some faves sometime.




  11. keshi,
    What the $@%# is iggied??
    OMG F%$@!! I can't help it if I am so dense! Please forgive me.

    You know that I have a huge collection of Australian bands..I think that we have discussed this before. You Aussies have done a much better job at being unique because you don't live next door to you know who! We are bombarded by their Culture and held on to our British roots as a shield against it.

    Every decade did have it's heroes but most countries don't produce great modern music..yet. they just copy it.
    Norway had AHA, Sweden had ABBA, ummmm see what I mean...but you could list great bands from the UK and the USA for hours. I am not sure if that will change as the world gets a little more Asian in the always seems like the Eastern Stars sound and look very Western.

    HUGGGGGGGGGGZ..are we good?

  12. I was born in the 80's but have recently been digging a lot of 70's stuff thanks to people at my work who listen to classic rock all day. I remember one of them saying how anything released after 79 is crap.

    I don't think music today is too bad though, it's just that the good stuff is way harder to find.

    TIME's list is crap, and they probably made it like that on purpose just so people would raise eyebrows, get all red in the face and tell all their friends about the list.

    I mean.. Hank Williams and Elvis compilations for the 2000s? What's the point?

  13. Anonymous12:16 a.m.

    We have great songwriters like Matthew Good, and Sam Roberts just to name two. These guys have gifts. And if either were American or British (especially MG), they would be the second coming of Christ.

  14. Sorry dude I couldn't read your whole post, because of music I couldn't stop. I did see some Zepplin so I know you have good taste in music. I will say this people are diverse in music just as they are diverse in life. If we all had the same taste it would be 1984 or a pretty boring world.

  15. Is that cake in the second to last picture? Cake? Hmm... cake.

    I have to start eating breakfast.

    There isn't any music I don't like except rap. The 80's and 90's didn't offer a great deal for me, a few select songs from a wide variety of bands/groups. I got back into classical music in the 90's, which pretty much drowned out everything else.

    "You Aussies have done a much better job at being unique because you don't live next door to you know who! We are bombarded by their Culture and held on to our British roots as a shield against it."

    We're like kudzu. I'll never understand why Canada has never said STFU already to the US.

  16. stu hood,
    My daughters are 80s babies so they were in the same boat..when they were coming of age it was boy bands and hip one of them is hooked on schmaltzy 70s AM gold and the other can't live without 80s tunes.
    That TIME list is outrageous! What a pile of crap..but they are trying to impress us with how 'eclectic' they are..oooh aaah!
    There is a lot of good music around now and the stuff that I like is somewhere between upscale emo and indie punker. To each his own!

    Dude, here is some of my Canadian Content:Arcade Fire, Bryan Adams,April Wine,Barenaked Ladies, Barney Bentall, Black Mountain, Blue Rodeo, Caribou, Bruce Cockburn, Crash Test Dummies, Dears, Doug & Slugs, Econoline Crush, Foot In Coldwater, Frozen Ghost, Mathew Good, Cory Hart, Honeymoon Suite, Colin James, Paul Janz, Sass Jordan, Leahy, Gordon Lightfoot, Loverboy, Max Webster, Metric, Kim Mitchell, Alanis Morrisette, Bif Naked, Nickleback, Our Lady Peace, Sarah Maclaughlin, Michel Pagliaro, Payolas, Prism, Queen City Kids, Sam Roberts, Saga, Stars, Streetheart, Tea Party, Tragically Hip, Hawksley Workman to name a few...

    The video is at the bottom of the page..or just turn down your speakers..I keep trying to incorporate tunes on my post and have yet to decide if it is too disruptive...
    I listened to a lot of Zep back in the day..they were so HUGE when I was a kid..they were the next phase..I suppose I would still vote for Stairway To Heaven as one of the top 3 Rock songs ever to Layla by Clapton and All Along the Watchtower by Hendrix.

    laura elizabeth.
    We would never be that rude..part of our charm is being the enabler in this toxic relationship.
    Unfortunately we still think that we would all be speaking Russian if we hadn't lived next door to Uncle Sam during the Cold War.

  17. Okay i know you well enough to know that music is your passion if not your life and yet you forget about some good "Fiesta time" drinking music. Music reminds us of times gone bye and helps us relate things together. Someones list really means nothing to me because i feel we all find what we are looking for in our own cabinet drawer. "Keep on Rockin"

  18. nice work h.e.! i agree 120% with all of that- my music taste is widely varied from metallica to tchaikovsky!

  19. I'm a 70s girl and haven't left that decade

  20. bon jovi all the way!!!!!

  21. Anonymous4:40 p.m.

    HE did you steal my record collection from the attic? All that's missing there is Cat Stevens Tea for the Tillerman. Thanks for the link old chap, will reciprocate.

  22. iggied = ignored


    ur right abt that HE...alot of musicians copy the Western world alright. But thats cos majority of the world enjoys Western music. I mean would u like going 'om shanthi shanthi shanthi' in ur car LOL!


  23. Sorry to be pedantic, HE, but you'll note that the heading on that page reads "The All-Time 100 albums", and makes no reference to "greatest" until further down the text almost as an incidental or unimportant reference. The authors themselves seem to be taking the piss out of themselves: "We hope you'll treat the All-TIME 100 as a great musical parlor game. Read and listen to the arguments for the selections, then tell us what we missed or got wrong. Or even possibly what we got right."

    So there :)

  24. hodedooler,
    Ah YES the Fiesta HIC! music..the way to satisfy a large gathering of people with different musical tastes is to play a little bit of everything in groups of threes..
    there now my secret is out.

    Nice! Like most North Americans I received the bulk of my education in Classical music from Bugs Bunny Cartoons.
    During the 70s ELO delivered a startling convergence of Rock and Classical music that captured my imagination. I realise that guys like Mozart were the rock stars of their day but I have only a faint smattering of those works in my collection. My favorite line in Amadeus is "too many notes".

    ziggi stardust,
    ..and rightly so! I cannot fathom ever replacing the tsunamic wave of images that flood my little 3 pound brain when I hear the first three notes of songs like the Stones' Monkey Man or Mott's Sweet Jane...they instantly transport me to a time when everything was sooo exagerrated and ridiculously fun.

    You are quite welcome my dear. I loved Cat Stevens too...I still shudder when I hear Father and Son or Sad Lisa...he was amazing.
    If only he would have become a Yuppy like everyone else, we could still be enjoying his tunes.

    Hy keshiroo,
    Am I still in the doghouse?
    When our neice was in India last year she emailed me with a list of pop songs that they were I have songs like Deeder De, Bhangra Flava, Bahane, Pyar Ke Geet, Soni Soni, Dilbar Janiya, Woh Latki and others in my collection.
    Actually I have been entranced by the sound of the sitar and tablas ever since I heard Ravi Shankar play back in the 70s on the Concert For Bangla Desh.
    I like listening to all sorts of things..I even have Rolf Harris singin' Tie Me Kangaroo Down Sport...which believe it or not was played on the radio here in the 60s...and everyone watched Skippy the Bush they still play that series on Aussie TV??

    Pedantics schmantics that list is bullsh*t...they know full well that they would have to slant everthing to accommodate every region of each country and...oh for heaven was a dumb list and their little disclaimer proves that they just did it to get people pissed off and get some traffic for TIME INC.
    Imagine leaving Dark Side of the Moon off the is still selling copies and it came out in 73!!

  25. There' hope for you yet! ;) Outstanding choices in music. I tend to lean towards the newer stuff now, and newer stuff is what I was listening to last time I stopped by. Here I was jamming to Buckcherry then more music started on top. No fault of yours. I just couldn't find the button to turn it off. LOL Have a great weekend dude.

  26. Come to think of it, the bands I like are mostly from UK. Maybe they know how to produse soul touching music.

    My all time favourite is a Russian though. I can't get over Tchaikovesky.

  27. maybe because UK's english is better than anywhere and they make music from the heart, for the love of it...for the fun or it and theyre HAPPY PEOPLE...a million happy people....a million happy people....

    I have to say In the context of tamil songs the greatest ever was the 70's and 80's because theyr focused on the vocals and lyrics and the music was simple. They cued from the 40,50 and 60's in the lyrics department.

    The present generation listen to the ultimate crap called Hip hop and rap which drives me nuts.

  28. I'm with you on Layla. But it has to be the original, passionate Derek and the Dominoes version NOT that lifeless unplugged crap.

  29. I'm loving this post!!!! '70s music is the BEST: Abba... Lobo... Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show... Jefferson Starship (specifically, the Earth album... the Bee Gees disco stuff... Ambrosia... Captain and Tennille... the Carpenters... and ALL the one-hit wonders!

    I could go on and on....

  30. Ah hell. I have no favorite decade of music. I was raised on MoTown, rebelled with the Doors and later the Kinks, followed by the Dead Milkmen and the Violent Femmes.

    I still groove on Fleetwood Mac no matter how mainstream they become, and I enjoy James Taylor almost daily, if and when I get done with Ben Folds, who remains at my number one.

    I went through the metal phase in the 80's with Metallica and Guns n'Roses - but moved with the Oingo Boingo, Depeche Mode, and the Cure.

    Morrissey became my god somewhere around 1990, along with REM when they released Green.

    I think I'm lost in translation somewhere between 1960 and 2007.

  31. nekked,
    Did you see the list of Canuck bands in my reply to anonymousblogger. I know that you are a great promoter on your blog...chillax dude..have a good one.

    et tu gautami,
    Wow the Tchaik man is sooo popular with the ladies. What is it about his music? I prefer Wagner thanks to Apocalypse Now.

    Nature abhors a vacuum and hip hop/rap in it's present form anyway, has filled in the void. Mindless declarations of sexual prowess, misogeny and avarice!
    What a terrible message that crap is selling to the next generation. VAPID!

    Yes there is ONE thing that we can agree on..I loathe that suckhole unplugged version..BLEH!

    Holy AM GOLD Batman!
    You would get along famously with my goodladywife. She loves all of those schmaltzy songs..pure sugar pop..but atleast they had a melody and the artists (for the most part) could actually carry a tune.
    I secretly listen to them too but I am not about to admit to it in front of the guys..DOH!

    My fave Supremes song is Nathan Jones,
    Doors: Light my Fire, Fleetwood:Hold Me & Tusk,
    Depeche Mode:Blasphemous Rumor,
    REM: Near Wild Heaven
    and the Cure's Just Like Heaven is in my Top Ten Alltime Faves!!!!

  32. Great post -- and I have to agree with you on that final point. My own favourites may be slightly outside of the mainstream (e.g. Joe Jackson, Elvis Costello, etc.) but certainly almost all come from the lovely island. More recently I've become a huge fan of recent Canadian popular music (but in defence of "Old Canadiana" you forgot those pioneers Neil Young and Joni Mitchell in your list! For shame!). I think it finally ripened (with all those great Brit influences).

  33. You secretly listen to 70s AM Gold? secretly????? Not me! I listen to that stuff at full volume with the top down on the convertible! "Share the Love", I say. Even if a rice rocket full of teenagers pulls up next to me at the stop light and drown out Barry Manilow with ground-thumping hip-hop, I don't care. They can laugh all they want. I've got to have my Prozac Radio.

  34. oyeah India has some cool pop music. Im glad u enjoy em and especially fav! D u know how to do the Bhangra? :)

    **Ravi Shankar play back in the 70s on the Concert For Bangla Desh.

    wow and what a concert it was! I have the DVD.

    Skippy the kangaroo...? hell yeah they still play it! Awwwww....


  35. keshi,
    I just KNEW that Skippy would still be playin' downunda!


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