Sunday, February 4, 2007

Sunday Morning Top Ten

1. You're Having My Baby- Paul Anka
Often referred to as "The White Marvin Gaye," Anka used this signature song to illuminate the political and social tensions of the late Vietnam War era. When he screams,

I can see it, your face is glowing,
I can see it in your eyes
I'm happy in knowin'
That you're having my baby

you can hear all the rage and sadness of that troubled time.

2. Ice Ice Baby - Vanilla Ice
Vanilla Ice has always carried a heavy burden as the Godfather of Rap. While his entire catalog speaks to the horrors he saw growing up in the Dallas suburbs, it is this song that captured the essence of what it meant to be white in 1990s America. The emotion is raw and the pain is real.

3. God Bless the USA - Lee Greenwood
Building on the work of artists such as Frank Zappa and Phil Ochs, Greenwood combines wry satire with a passionate cry against the corporate war machine. To be a part of a stadium full of people singing out this anthem is to understand our nation’s proud history of protest and dissent.

4. You Light Up My Life - Debbie Boone
Boone exploded on the scene in 1977 with “You Light Up My Life.” The scorching vocals and unabashed sexuality of the lyrics call to mind such earlier classics as Billie Holiday’s “Strange Fruit” and Sonny and Cher’s “I Got You Babe.” Boone remains a favorite presence in college towns around the country.

5. Chariots of Fire - Vangelis
N.W.A. cites this 1982 classic as one of the main influences for the admittedly derivative “Straight Outta Compton.” Known as “Howling Okra” in his native Greece, Vangelis continues to tour worldwide, often torching his keyboard at the conclusion of his act.

6. Eat It – “Weird Al” Yankovic
A stunningly original break from the bland pop that populated the air waves in those days, “Eat It” quickly climbed both the rock and soul charts, making Yankovic one of the premier crossover artists. Yankovic continues to blaze new musical trails, having followed up his earlier success with such experimental works as “Amish Paradise” “and “Angry White Boy Polka.”

7. Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go - Wham!
This death metal duo’s most famous hit was widely banned after it was alleged to have prompted a rash of teenage suicides. Although this resulted in the Clash backing out of a commitment to open for Wham! during the band's 1984 “Blood Red, Black Heart” tour, lead singer George Michael remains defiant and unapologetic to this day.

8. I Think I Love You - The Partridge Family
MC5’s predecessor as house band for the White Panther Party, this hard-rocking group was a family in name only. The band eventually split up when founding member Suzanne Crough left in 1973 to write for such artists as Led Zeppelin and The Edgar Winter Band, but not before climbing the charts with “I Think I Love You,” which remains a favorite of today’s hard-core radio pirates.

9. My Heart Will Go On - Kenny G
Kenny G melded the styles of Louis Armstrong, John Coltrane, and Chick Corea in this groundbreaking classic, yet it remains breathtakingly original. With hints of Chicago blues and the shanty towns of early 1970’s Kingston, Jamaica, this G-Dog hit has inspired a generation of underground spinners and neo-Dadaist’s.

10. Big Yellow Taxi - Counting Crows
Much like Hüsker Dü’s cover version of “I've Got a Brand New Pair of Roller Skates,” Counting Crows took a little-noticed pop song and set it on fire. Critics found previously unimagined layers of complexity in the Crows’ version, making it an instant favorite for those who are willing to expand their musical tastes beyond the trite and familiar.


Righteous Bubba said...

10. Big Yellow Taxi - Counting Crows
Much like Hüsker Dü’s cover version of “I've Got a Brand New Pair of Roller Skates,” Counting Crows took a little-noticed pop song and set it on fire.

And the AP would have you believe it was destroyed.

Snag said...

Great. Now I'll have Michelle Malkin hounding me.

Anonymous said...

Vanilla Ice? Damn you and your family for even mentioning it. What next, Debbie Gibson You Tubes over here?!!!!!!!!!!!

teh l4m3 said...

11. Electric Youth - Debbie Gibson: Miss Gibson's seminal contribution to the genre of leftist guerilla rap-rock protest is a searing indictment of Reagan-era corporatist deregulation, a wildly inventive critique of industry's influence on our political landscape, couched in hard-driving melodies that anticipated the coming grunge revolution perfected by Bel Biv Devoe.

Anonymous said...

I swear to Gawd teh teh. I swear!!

Chuckles said...

teh, it is spelled semenal.

Get it right.