Here's a list of seven of my favorite songs of all time, based on my currently resident iTunes library and then some. You can also keep up with my Last.fm listening, as I scrobble most songs.
Without further ado, in no particular order, with slight annotation:
- "Sweat Loaf," Butthole Surfers -- After several months confusing a mislabeled Couch Flambeau cassette with the Butthole Surfers, a clerk at the Exclusive Company in Madison finally set me straight. I ended up getting the Locust Abortion Technician LP at a now-closed record store in Whitewater. This remains one of the better first tracks ever.
- "Andorra," Sweet Baby -- One of the most important pop-punk LPs ever, this was released on Slash's short-lived Ruby imprint and predates most anything brave enough to call itself pop punk. I first heard this on the Lookout compilation The Thing That Ate Floyd, one of the best comps ever.
- "Going to Pasalacqua," Green Day -- Before they were international pop overlords, Green Day was a scrappy little punk band releasing 7-inch records on Lookout. This is one of those early tracks, but off their first LP. For many months, this was the first thing I heard every day; it was my alarm-clock CD player track. Close tie with "At the Library."
- "Bombshell," Operation Ivy -- Any track off this LP is a contender, and this record remains better than anything later released by any member, although most everyone has gone on to solid projects. I tend to like songs about girls, and this is one of the best.
- "Lonely Woman," Naked City -- This is a bit of a cheat, as it's another record on which any track is worth calling out. This LP and John Zorn's work in this period in general changed my high-school thinking about what the alto saxophone and jazz can do. Mind blowing for a secondary school reed player.
- "Ba Ba Ba Ba," The 77s -- My first band, Knightcap, practiced in the youth group room of the local Methodist church. The 77s were a Christian rock band before being a Christian rock band meant that you couldn't play rock 'n' roll. And this song is a great example of spiritually inspired '80s pop that could stand alone without being marketed as being spiritually inspired.
- "Cry of the Wild Goose," Frankie Laine -- Most of my early music listening was limited to my parents' record collection, which included several albums of cowboy songs recorded by Frankie Laine. His voice is haunting, and this song is awesome.
I'm tagging seven people, not five, just in case people choose not to participate -- and in honor of the 77s. Those people are, in no particular order: Brad Searles, Maura Johnston, Chris Breitenbach, Frank Portman, Glenn Gaslin, Thomas Hopkins, and Jon Lebkowsky.