Six months ago today, I wrote a post about the top 25 songs on my iTunes. Today, perhaps partially as a result of wanting to get my mind off the election, I’m looking at my top 25. The numbers in parentheses are the number of plays for each song, and I’m referencing where they were last time and what I wrote about them.
25. “All Good Generals,” Dakoda Motor Co. (109, #25 last time) — The Into The Son album was a constant in my college years…until the tape wore out (that’s right; I said tape). The day I found the CD years later was one of the happiest of my life. This super-short slice of surf punk is so much fun!
24. “Fall At Your Feet,” Crowded House (109, new to the list) — I don’t remember this song when it came out in 1991, but I discovered it through a cover version. GREAT song…I don’t know why it wasn’t a hit and why I don’t remember it.
23. “Someday,” The Afters (109, #18 last time) — A soaring Christian rock anthem.
22. “Everyday America,” Sugarland (110, new to the list) — I’m a big fan of Sugarland, not just because they’re from Georgia, but because they create incredible music that walks the line between country and pop, while remaining true to both. This song is a celebration of day-to-day life.
21. “Glad Tidings,” Van Morrison (111, #17 last time) — I’m still trying to decide, after all these years, what this song is about! Van Morrison at his most soulful…
20. “Grey Clouds,” Dakoda Motor Co. (111, #15 last time) — One of my all time favorite songs of the 90’s, this one is a nice country-influenced song from Into The Son. I love to sing along to it, and it still sounds fresh to me after all these years.
19. “You Know I’m No Good,” Amy Winehouse (111, #13 last time) — I consider Back To Black my favorite album of 2007, and I particularly love this blend of modern pop and classic R&B.
18. “Moondance,” Van Morrison (112, #12 last time) — Everybody knows it, everybody can sing along with it, and it’s probably the most accessible piece of pure jazz music in history. Who can argue with that?
17. “Satellite” Anna Nalick (112, #14 last time) — Michelle Rabitsch turned me on to Anna Nalick’s Wreck Of The Day, and this is my favorite song off this underrated gem of an album.
16. “Beautiful In Los Angeles,” Garrison Starr (113, #21 last time) — …another one of my 2006 faves, this one an interesting dysfunctional love song featuring backing vocals by Glen Phillips of Toad The Wet Sprocket.
15. “First Breath After Coma,” Explosions In The Sky (113, #25 last time) — This is one incredible piece of music. Clocking in at 9:33, this piece opens The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place with a roller-coaster ride of pensive and rousing sounds.
14. “Catch The Sun,” Doves (113, #20 last time) — I still remember the first time I heard this song…on MTV2 back in 2000 (remember when they still played cool stuff from time to time?). I couldn’t put a finger on what mesmerized me about the song, but I couldn’t resist it…I still feel that way every time I hear it.
13. “Time Stops,” Explosions In The Sky (114, #16 last time) — Divided into two halves that could easily stand on their own, this song starts out peaceful and almost pastoral; then it becomes a driving, rousing free-for-all.
12. “The Story,” Brandi Carlile (114, #19 last time) — I discovered this one as a free single on iTunes. A great rock song that would have done Janis Joplin…or even Patsy Cline…proud.
11. “You Never Give Me Your Money,” The Beatles (114, #9 last time) — This song kicks off the series of medleys of half-songs and song snippets on Side Two of Abbey Road, which is the best album of all time, hands down (No…don’t argue with me…’cause you’d be WRONG!). There’s nothing particularly special or wondrous about this song, except that it’s catchy, and it’s hard not to find yourself singing along to the Beatles’ financial and contractual woes.
10. “Hosanna,” Hillsong United (116, #11 last time) — A powerful, intense worship song that draws me into worship no matter where I am or what I’m doing whenever I hear it.
9. “Fidelity,” Regina Spektor (117, #7 last time) — Regina Spektor’s quirky pop at its best.
8. “Flame Turns Blue,” David Gray (117, #10 last time) — David Gray is one of those artists whose music I keep promising myself to dive into, and this lovely, near-epic acoustic rock ballad is my favorite song of his. I was moved the first time I heard it, and it still compels me. Is it a song of spiritual yearning, or is it about restoration of a romantic relationship? It works equally well on both levels.
7. “Better,” Regina Spektor (121, #8 last time) — This song is such a nice song of encouragement between friends. I just can’t resist its catchy, bouncy beauty.
6. “Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End,” The Beatles (127, #6 last time) — This medley, also from Abbey Road, is the loveliest piece of music The Beatles ever made. To me, there’s a stunning universality to the songs in this medley, in spite of the fact that most of the rest of Abbey Road is either very personal or art-for-art’s-sake in nature. A truly unforgettable suite of songs.
5. “Came To The Rescue,” Hillsong United (138, #5 last time) — A powerful, passionate worship ballad, and possibly my favorite worship song ever. I’d like to claim this song’s bridge…”In my life, be lifted high/In our world, be lifted high/In our love, be lifted high”…as my personal call to live a life more like Christ. May all I do lift Him up!
4. “Your Hand In Mine, Explosions In The Sky (158, #4 last time) — Probably the inspiration for the Friday Night Lights TV theme (see #3), this is a piece of music that will just about bring tears to my eyes every time I hear it.
3. “Friday Night Lights (TV show) Theme,” W.G. “Snuffy” Walden (161, #3 last time) — Not a commercially available single or soundtrack cut, but this piece of music says more in 44 seconds of instrumental music than most pop singles say in three or four minutes.
2. “Beautiful Love,” The Afters (167, #2 last time) — I could make the argument that this is one of the greatest songs of the last five years, and I think I’d win.
1. “Into The Mystic,” Van Morrison (178, #1 last time) — This is the most beautiful song of all time, hands down. I still remember the first time I heard it, and I still almost have to stop to catch my breath every time it plays. A song that’s more about mood than lyrics, “Into The Mystic” practically has a style all it’s own. And it’s a classic that will never fade or die.