Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Fred’s Twenty Greatest Hits

That are on my computer, right now, in a popular vein. This is the list from a CD that I made for a couple of Thai friends. I kept it pretty middle-of-the-road, nothing to raw or aggressive. They're all great tunes, you can look them up.

In no particular order:

“Looking for a Love;” The Valentinos

The popular music group including the three Womack brothers, all talented left-handed singing guitarists who worked with Sam Cooke on his SAR label.

“Beginning to See the Light;” The Velvet Underground

A unique, very influential rock band from late-Sixties New York City.

“American Girl;” Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

Just a good radio hit from the late-Seventies.

“Looking for the Heart of Saturday Night;” Tom Waits

Singer-songwriter with a working class point of view.

“Can I Change My Mind;” Tyrone Davis

Chicago Soul at its finest.

“Sunday, Bloody Sunday;” U2

An early-Eighties hit from the biggest stars in rock. Very political, with a sincere cry-out for people to just get along.

“Sick and Tired;” Chris Kenner

A Sixties hit from New Orleans. Listen for the typical New Orleans band sound and rhythm. This is my favorite song.

“I Want More;” Can

A German Progressive-Rock outfit from the Seventies.

“Take Me to the River;” Al Green

It’s hard to pick just one Al Green song. From Hi Records in Memphis, Tennessee, early-Seventies, featuring the great Al Jackson on drums.

“Tomorrow Night;” Lonnie Johnson

A timeless artist. This song was recorded about 1950. Lonnie is a great guitar player, and this is his greatest hit.

“It’s Alright;” Major Lance

On the surface, just another great late-Sixties Soul song, but Major Lance was a very special artist. Most of his songs were happy, or even a little silly, but there was always a great sadness in his voice. This is a cover version of a song by Curtis Mayfield and the Impressions.

“Some Day, Some Way;” Marshall Crenshaw

An Eighties pop tune from Marshall Crenshaw, who came from Lubbock, Texas, home of Buddy Holly. He never made it big, but he should have.

Ain’t Got No;” Nina Simone

This song started out as a silly part of the Sixties musical “Hair,” but Nina Simone re-wrote the song in the Seventies and pumped it up into a great political statement about poverty and discrimination in America.

“These Days;” Nico

The song is written by the great Jackson Browne. This version, sung by Nico, was recorded for some movie. English is not Nico’s first language, and this fact gave her a great, flat delivery that really emphasizes the emotional impact of the song.

“Rock and Roll Lullaby;” The Belmonts

As in “Dion and the Belmonts,” the Fifties Doo-Wop group. This is from an early-Seventies album by the guys without Dion. The group was named after Belmont Avenue, in the Bronx, New York.

Wouldn’t It Be Nice;” The Beach Boys

The famous Surf Music group that went on to greatness. Written by the great Brian Wilson, and recorded in the late Sixties. This is such a sweet song. There were three brothers in the group: Brian, Dennis and Carl. Dennis died young in a swimming accident, and Carl died recently of cancer. Brian is still working.

“Stone Soul Picnic;” Laura Nyro

Laura Nyro was a great songwriter in the Seventies who made several great albums on her own.

“When Will I Be Loved;” The Everly Brothers

These guys started in show business on their parents Country Music TV show about 1948, and had lots of hits throughout the Fifties. They wrote this one themselves in the early-Sixties.

“She Put the Hurt on Me;” Prince La La

Another 1960’s New Orleans artist. He only released two singles in his short life, and both were two-sided hits (the radio played both sides). He was shot dead, which led to someone else’s song, “Who Shot the La La?”

“Feel the Need;” The Detroit Emeralds

Just a fabulous song from the early-Seventies.

No comments: