Remove your sandals, we walk on hallowed ground now- the top 100!
100- Solitary Man, Neil Diamond. Despite the fact my brain keeps wanting to switch out "solitary" for "sailor" and turn it into a Popeye rag.
99- One Fine Day, the Chiffons. Carole King never wrote a bad song, and this is another "invulnerable" song that virtually no one can screw up. Excepting William Hung, of course, and my ex-wife.
98- Help!, the Beatles. This is beyond a doubt the Beatles song that has never stopped growing on me. Sing the background part every time. And I retain vestigal memories of watching the movie a generation ago.
97- Strawberry Fields Forever, the Beatles. I mentioned before my fondness for the later Fab Four, when they really started to put distance creatively between themselves and virtually everyone else (Except perhaps Brian Wilson).
96- Lady Willpower, Gary Puckett and the Union Gap. Don't have anything more I can add about a heavilly underrated act.
95- Cathy's Clown, Everly Brothers. Her name wasn't Cathy, but I can relate. "I die each time/ I hear this sound..."
94- Gentle On My Mind, Glen Campbell. I can't help wishing I'd been a hobo when this song comes on.
"I dip my cup of soup back from a gurglin' cracklin' cauldron In some train yard/My beard a rustlin' coal pile
And a dirty hat pulled low across my face
Through cupped hands 'round a tin can/I pretend to hold you to my breast and find
That you're waitin' from the back roads
By the rivers of my memory
Ever smilin', ever gentle on my mind ."
93- Puff The Magic Dragon, Peter, Paul, and Mary. I imagine there was a long ago time this was in my top ten, before I knew what such things were. Still gets me at "A dragon lives forever/but not so, little boys..."
92- I Know A Place, Petula Clark. Her songs remind me of the Fort Wayne of my childhood, with Wolf and Dessaurs and all. It was magic at Christmas time. All the things they want to do to downtown and revitalize it now, and it's a damn shame that they didn't think about this when the suburban malls sprang up and the city leaders left W&D and Hutner's Paris to die.
91- Master Jack, Four Jacks and a Jill. A tad obscure to most, but this song (which we had on 45) I never quite figured out how to listen to without getting a queer feeling in my stomach.
Man, that Glennis Lynne was a doll, wasn't she?
90- Crystal Blue Persuasion, Tommy James and the Shondels. Boy, it sure is hard to believe the same garage band that did Hanky Panky could come up with something as intricately crafted as this. A great, positive, hopeful song.
89- Do You Know The Way To San Jose, Dionne Warwick. "L.A. is a great big freeway/ put a hundred down and buy a car..." Yeah, good luck with that now...
88- Big Bad John, Jimmy Dean. It's a wonder this 45 made it through our childhood with any grooves left. Of course, foe me it helpd that Jimmy was part of the cast of Daniel Boone. Helped out my appreciation of the Ames Brothers, too. BTW, if you saw yesterday's Time Machine, you saw that this song turned 50 this week.
87- The Unicorn, the Irish Rovers. See what I mean about all the great kids songs? Here's one of the best. Making me cry as I write.
86- Five O'clock World, the Vogues. Yes, this did have a life before Drew Carey, and a good one. Kinda in the vein of another of my seventies favorites, Summer Breeze.
85- California Dreaming, the Mamas and the Papas. Another sing-along song every time it comes on. Is there any better imagry of a winter's day?
84- The In Crowd, Dobie Gray. Definately no affinity to this song, I just like it.
83- She's Not There, the Zombies. The fun thing with the Zombies is their sense of disconnect from the rest of society, which is put in focus in, "Well no one told me about her.. though they all knew.."
82- Rain Rain Go Away, Bobby Vinton. Just a voice that stood out.
God, I hadn't heard that in years!
81- Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow, the Shirelles. Damn near where we started, with another great Carole King tune.
Man, the time has flown again. To close out this weekend's trip, let's listen to the "birthday boy":