Thursday, July 23, 2009

25 Favorite Song Countdown

For the next 25 days, the blog will count down my recently compiled list of 25 favorite popular songs of the rock era. Two basic rules informed the list: No more than one song per artist. Don't try to balance the list by decade of release, race of artist, obscurity of artist, obscurity of song relative to artist, subgenre, etc.

Like all such lists, this one is a product of the moment. The choices are fairly arbitrary, more so the rankings, but there is no question that each song on the list is very special to me. I last did this about a year and a half ago, and the lists have only 6 songs in common. Still, I look back at that list and still consider each song on it to be among my favorites. This list is much harder than favorite albums or favorite artists, simply because there are more songs than albums or artists and far more of high quality.

The second rule was liberating. I felt okay about excluding artists of great stature, even a few I consider among my favorites. I picked my true favorites over deeper cuts. Following the rule generated some interesting stats: 5 songs from the 60s, 10 from the 70s, 4 80s, 4 90s, 2 2000s. 9 by solo artists. 3 by black artists. 1 by a female artist. No hip-hop.

I've also made an editorial decision not to include any commentary on the songs as I post them. These songs are good enough that listeners should be able to appreciate them without my remarks.

Countdown begins tomorrow.

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