That's right, I finished that humongous project of my favorite songs of the sixties, and I thought I'd share them with you every saturday. Now I got my list up to 300, so I'm thinking a twenty- a -week post, with little tidbits, and a video or two for the obscure.
Now one thing I need to say right off the top- good songs got left off. Can't be helped. Did everything get into the right order? Well... mostly. How could I not have (song name here) on my list? Either A) I had no room, B) I don't know it, C) I missed the damn thing in either research or writing down, or D) I don't like it. If you get curious about a song (it's possible presence or lack thereof), feel free to shoot me a comment. I'll say A) it missed the cut and why, B) what the hell is that, C) Crap! I need to put that in right there, or D) tough titties. Or E) be patient, it's coming up. Also, this is MY list, and MY feelings. Nothing to do with critical opinions, sales figures, or balance in taste. I was on a album listing site where I took crap because I "didn't have enough of this genre" or "you put that on a list?", or "we really don't like greatest hits lps on the list". MY songs, my choice. I'm sharing, not being authoritative.
As it is my list, you'll see definite leanings towards certain acts. In fact, by my reckoning, 18 acts account for 101 songs (33.67%); five of those acts log 45 of the songs (15%); and three of them alone account for 33 songs (11%). And if I figured right, there are 157 acts on the list, and 103 only have 1 song apiece.
Now that the disclaimers are out of the way, here are the openning twenty.
300. These Eyes, The Guess Who. Ever since I heard the Best Of the Guess Who Vol. 1 for the first time, I thought this song is an excellent way to kick off an album. Burton, Randy, and the guys have four tunes on the list.
299. Hit The Road Jack, Ray Charles. I used to be a fan of the NBC show Buffalo Bill starring Dabney Coleman. The dream the lead character had about everyone being out to get him (which was true), accompanied by this song, was hilarious. One of two for Ray.
298. The Last Time, The Rolling Stones. This is the first of just two Stones tunes on the list. Sure I'll get heat for that. Not that I don't like the Stones, but usually I go for songs I have emotion vested in.
297. Good Thing, Paul Revere and the Raiders. I was kinda surprised I didn't have more than 2 songs by these guys on here- Hungry just missed.
296. Simon Says, 1910 Fruitgum Company. What can I say, I liked bubblegum. And I'll like it again- this is one of 2 for the firm.
295. Another Saturday Night, Sam Cooke. A lot of people didn't know that Cat Stevens was a cover version for Sam Cooke's original. A good song either way, and one of 2 for the late Mr. Cooke.
294. Tijuana Taxi, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass. I have TB's greatest hits on cd. The next two spots are two of my favorites. Herb also solos up ahead, so I guess you could put him up for three, or them for two and him for one.
293. Spanish Flea, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass. I figure you've all seen enough "The Dating Game" clips by now to know this one.
292. Crying, Roy Orbison. Don McLean had a huge hit with his remake of this in the mid-seventies. But Roy was an original, in every way. One of three times he's in the countdown.
291. Memphis, Johnny Rivers. I probably had to leave off more good songs by Johnny than any other artist. Still, he hits the list 4 times. One of his great live songs.
290. Expressway To Your Heart, the Soul Survivors. When I got to the home stretch, this was one of those songs I was determined to squeeze in somehow, along with the next one.
289. Time Has Come Today, Chambers Brothers. One of the great psychadelic songs of the era, a genre I wish I could have represented more heavilly.
288. Make Your Own Kind Of Music, Mama Cass Elliot. A one of a kind vocalist, whether with the Mamas And Papas or solo. Some of these songs I apreciated later in life. This is one of those I apreciated from an early age- 8, in fact.
287. Oh, Pretty Woman, Roy Orbison. Believe me, this song was great long before Julia Roberts got attached to it.
286. Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing, Baby, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. Marvin, before he got away from Motown so he could do his own stuff, was at his best with Tammi. One of two for this duo.
285. Shakin' All Over, The Guess Who. This was when it was still Chad Allen's band. They later did a cool tribute to this on a later album, When The Band Was Playing "Shakin' All Over".
284. 1-2-3 Red Light, 1910 Fruitgum Company. Like I said, I like bubblegum.
283. MacArthur Park, Richard Harris. You had to work in a lot of pomposity to overcome the bizarre lyrics on this one, and the Camelot actor made it a classic. Donna Summer did good, but lost too much in the lyrics that her single cut out.
282. Return To Sender, Elvis Presley. Okay, I got my earplugs in- only 2 Elvis songs in the countdown. That was VERY hard for me. Please save the death threats for someone who might warrant them (Harry Reid comes to mind).
281. A Kind Of Hush, Herman's Hermits. This was also a hard group for me; of the four tunes on my chart, we'll hit all of them fairly quickly. Actually heard the Carpenter's version before this (or so it seemed to my addled memory. A lot of songs I know I had to have heard back then I really don't remember until after someone else remade them.
Geez, is that twenty already? Wow, that goes fast. On the way out, here's one more from this week's bunch. Enjoy!