Thursday, August 24, 2006

Slice Of The Sixties

I have stolen yet another musical related post from Courtney. If you remember, she was the person that triggered my rant on substitute lead singers. This time she went through Pitchfork’s list of the 200 Greatest Songs of 1960s and commented. The 60s are not my strong suit since what I remember of them mostly relates to Sesame Street and Saturday morning cartoons.

My specialties are the Cheesy Hits of the 1970s and the Awesome 80s. Obviously a lot of great music was made in the 60s, so I went through my iPod to see how much of this well reasoned list I had. This list is only representative of my personal tastes and isn’t a good cross section of the decade.

193. Johnny and June Carter Cash: "Jackson"
171. Neil Diamond: "Sweet Caroline"
164. Frank Sinatra: "It Was a Very Good Year"
126. Led Zeppelin: "What Is and What Should Never Be"
105. Simon & Garfunkel: "America"
94. Simon & Garfunkel: "Mrs. Robinson"
84. The Rolling Stones: "You Can't Always Get What You Want"
82. Elvis Presley: "Suspicious Minds"
80. Bob Dylan: "Subterranean Homesick Blues"
75. Simon & Garfunkel: "The Boxer"
73. Bob Dylan: "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right"
62. The Rolling Stones: "Street Fighting Man"
58. The Beatles: "I Want to Hold Your Hand"
53. Led Zeppelin: "Whole Lotta Love"
48. David Bowie: "Space Oddity"
47. The Beatles: "Eleanor Rigby"
45. Dusty Springfield: "Son of a Preacher Man"
39. The Rolling Stones: "Sympathy for the Devil"
37. Simon & Garfunkel: "The Sound of Silence"
35. Johnny Cash: "Ring of Fire"
25. The Rolling Stones: "Paint It Black"
22. Marvin Gaye: "I Heard It Through the Grapevine"
21. The Beach Boys: "Good Vibrations"
19. The Beatles: "Tomorrow Never Knows"
12. The Rolling Stones: "Gimme Shelter"
11. Led Zeppelin: "Dazed and Confused"
8. Johnny Cash: "Folsom Prison Blues (Live at Folsom Prison)"
7. The Beach Boys: "Wouldn't It Be Nice"
5. The Beatles: "A Day in the Life"
4. Bob Dylan: "Like a Rolling Stone"
1. The Beach Boys: "God Only Knows"

That’s about 30 out of 200, and half of the top 10, so I don’t feel too bad. Most of these are from a few artists that I have the various Greatest Hits and Essential collections of. It also reveals a few holes in my collection. I need some Credence Clearwater Revival, Kinks, and Loretta Lynn to round out my playlists. There are also a lot of good songs on the list that I would like, but I don't feel like buying a whole album to get one song.

The hardest part of buying a hits collection from a vintage artist is selecting which of the many compilations available are the best and most representative. Some artists have more "Best Of" records than studio albums. Even harder is getting good collections of the one-hit wonders and minor artists. It takes awhile to find one without a lot of duplication of artists I already have or songs I can't stand.

Blatant Comment Whoring™: I’m open to suggestions. Let me know what I can buy during my next Personal Spending Day at BigBoxOfBooksAndMusic™ to fill in my historical archives.

Update: Maynard Ferguson, a jazz legend that spent a lot of his later career developing new talent, died yesterday. My observations on a show of his I saw last fall can be found here.


Anonymous said...

I'll admit it - I was there in the '60's, and a lot of it blurs in my memory. And a lot of the music I love was "underground" so I may not have heard it till the '70's. Here are my recommendations:

Cream - Sunshine of Your Love, White Room, Tales of Brave Ulysses, Badge - get the albums Disraeli Gears, or The Best of Cream, or Wheels of Fire, or Those Were the Days (which is everything they recorded)

Jimi Hendrix - Purple Haze

The Band - album Music From Big Pink

The Byrds - Eight Miles High

Moody Blues - Lovely to See You Again, Nights in White Satin, Legend of a Mind (Timothy Leary's Dead) - Days of Future Passed, In Search of the Lost Chord

Neil Young - Down by the River, Cinnamon Girl

Otis Redding - Sitting on the Dock of the Bay

Stones - albums Let It Bleed, Beggars Banquet

Dylan, Dylan, Dylan - album Highway 61 Revisited, any and all others

Everything by the Beatles - but especially Abbey Road, Sgt Pepper

I'll stop now before the flashbacks get the better of me - oh, you should have something by Jefferson Airplane, Grateful Dead - and Janis Joplin - Piece of My Heart, Summertime!


Anonymous said...

OK a couple more -
Leon Russell - get the self-titled album with Delta Lady, A Song for You - amazon says it was released on Jan 1, 1970, so I say it qualifies as a '60's album

Joe Cocker - Joe Cocker! - has his version of Delta Lady, Bird on a Wire, Hitchcock Railway

Santana - first, self-titled album, Abraxas (may have been released in 1970, but still)


Impetua said...

OMG I don't know if I can continue reading your blog knowing that you PURPOSELY listen to anything by Neil Diamond. At least it wasn't "Crackin' Rosie," possibly the stupidest song title ever. What the hell is that song about anyway?

As for music of the '60's, well, I was born in '67 so while a lot of it is familiar to me, my particular associations with it are fairly tenuous. So I got nothing for ya.

2fs said... want to get ahold of single songs from '60s artists but in some cases don't want to buy entire albums? That's exactly the situation downloading tracks from the internet is perfect for. If for some reason you object to doing so, you could always try to find the song in question on CDs at your local public library (and rip it from that). Or if you want to be completely legit, many of them probably are available at iTunes and the like for around a buck.

Mooselet said...

I spent all of 11 days in the 60's, so I don't think I can contribute much. Although my father loved Janis Joplin - is she from the 60's? 70's? I'm pathetic... but I have a fondness for "Me and Bobby Magee".

yellojkt said...

mostlylurking, those are great suggestions. I have "Cream of Clapton" which combines Slowhand's solo, Cream, and Derek & Dominos hits on one album.

mooselet, "Me and Bobby Magee" is great and I want both the Janis version and one by Kris Kristofferson.

2fs, I'm sure I could hunt whatever I want down off the internet, but I'm over that. An example of what I'm looking for is a 2 disc collection called "25 #1 Hits From 25 Years" from Mowtown that has a ton of Supremes, Smokey Robinson, and Stevie Wonder all in one package. I think I just need to spend more time rummaging through the compilation bin.

HRH Courtney, Queen of Everything said...

Good list. I had 42, and was surprised by some of the songs I ONCE had, but now don't. Damn those worn out cassettes...

New music? Silversun Pickups are great. As are the Raconteurs, Butch Walker and the Let's-go-out-tonites, and the new Ani DiFranco album, although I know the chick singers are banned.

Thanks for the link!

yellojkt said...


I had to scratch "Substitute" by the Who off my list because Meaty Beaty Big and Bouncy is not currently available as a US release (although the import is just 15 bucks at Amazon so I shouldn't be so cheap). I'm allowed to listen to Ani; there's just no way to talk my wife into a show. Her Lining in Clip album is awesome. She's also too prolific for me to keep up with. I'll wait for a greatest hits package.

Tanaka said...

I'm sorry to say this but I like the cheesy hits of 1970s as much as I do 60s.