My Ultimate Playlist and the Current State of Music

Well, here where I live, it is a beautiful 74 degrees, cool, fall-like September Saturday. …and what better way to spend a day such as this, than listening to your favorite tunes, right?

I’ve decided to share with you all the playlist of my top 15 all-time favorite songs.  It has taken a long time to get to this point, what with my indecisiveness over choosing my favorite music…and how can you decide, really? 

Yet, these songs in my library really stand out to me.  I put them in no particular order, because it was hard enough picking 15 as it is. The only exception to that statement is “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac…which has been my number-one, favorite song for years and, surprisingly, hasn’t changed.

The list is a mix of oldies-but-goodies-type-classics, and a few new artists, including genres of jazz, folk, indie, and Motown, with a few British artists (because I am obsessed with British music/bands).  

…I say “a few new artists”, because sadly these artists are a part of a waning group of good current musicians…who represent all that’s left of good up-and-coming music.  Sadly, mainstream radio stations and the majority of the public is satisfied with overly pop-synthesized, auto-tuned, crap…and rap music.  (If you know me at all you’ll know I detest rap.)  

Seriously, when did it became OK to be a famous singer, but then suck live or change your voice with the help of technology.  This just makes it right for people with semi-decent personalities and, perhaps, a charming charisma to garner overly-inflated egos, despite the fact that they have absolutely no musical talent.  

What about the amazingly, talented people who sing in cafes all their life to make some pocket change? Or what about my talented friends attending the College Conservatory of Music at our college, the University of Cincinnati? Where is their big break?  Oh, I’m Sorry!…it was smashed to pieces because the rest of the world would rather sit and listen to the absolute junk that they pump through the airwaves *my voice is literally seething with sarcasm right now*

Honestly, if you want proof of the state of music, just watch one of the multiple, ego-stroking music award shows they hold every year…on second thought, just don’t, it’s that bad…I’ll just tell you about my experience with them.  

For example, about a week or so ago the VMAs were on…don’t even get me started on the fact that MTV has the Video Music Awards, when they don’t even show music videos anymore!!!! (…and my theory that The Man uses things like the VMAs to distract our nation’s youth from the real issues of the day such as foreign policy, war and politics…but I digress…)

…Anyways, I literally had it on for 2 minutes and I was forced to turn it off, before wailing my remote through the screen in an intense rage.  In that 2-minutes amount of time, I reaffirmed how much I hate Justin Bieber, realized how cocky Rihanna is (seriously, someone run and sterilize a needle, cause someone needs to pop that head before it explodes), and just how talented Taylor Swift must be at using the Thesaurus, because I swear all of her songs are just synonyms of each other…we get it, you hate some guy because he broke your heart..blahblahblah

Think of how some of the music greats started, people.  They weren’t pop-synthetic, lip-syncing, no talent, sell-outs.  They didn’t sign away their soul to a high power record label, to be made-over into the next big sensation.  They didn’t let other people write their songs for the sole purpose of being #1 on the charts.

No!…The true artists worked and struggled to get where they were/are.  They have overflowing amounts of talent, be that through singing or instrumental abilities, or usually both.  They’ve been rejected and pushed to the limits.  They’ve fought hard to do what they loved, and poured their heart and soul into the art, that is their music.

They’ve fought to be heard.

Billy Joel…Spent the better part of his early years making ends meet by playing cabaret, piano bars in New York City…

Stevie Nicks…received a guitar for her birthday and wrote her first song, “I’ve Loved and I’ve Lost, and I’m Sad But Not Blue” at sixteen…

Elton John…rebelled against his restrictive childhood and a father who wanted him to be “something sensible, like a banker”, and quit school to pursue his music…

Frank Sinatra…got his start at age eight, singing on top of a bar for tips in Hoboken, and later working as a newspaper delivery boy and a shipyard riveter, to earn a livelihood while he chased his dreams of being in the music business…

…countless stories such as this make up the fabric of classic music, and even though the state of current music is depressing, there are still some new “legends” being born right now..stitching themselves to the end of that long line, adding their voice to the hundreds that have come before it.

Just something to think about, and a little of my food for thought for you this Saturday…and I hope you will listen to my list of favorites.  Maybe it will spawn a new musical obsession for you or make you stop and think about your own music and collection of artists.  I’m not saying you can’t listen to whatever you want to, that would make me an incredible snob.  I’m just saying, if you like an artist’s music, really look into the lyrics of their music, what kind of person they are, or how they got to where they are today.  Music can be catchy, or dance-tastic…but, in my opinion, real music has a story, real artists have a great spirit and passion for what they do…It all means something and, behind it all, …is a lot of heart.

My Top 15 Ultimate Songs:

-“Dreams”  Fleetwood Mac

-“Tiny Dancer”  Elton John

-“Here Comes Your Man”  Pixies

-“One Fine Day”  The Chiffons

-“Piano Man”  Billy Joel

-“Don’t Get Around Much Anymore”  Harry Connick Jr.

-“Midnight Train to Georgia”  Gladys Knight and the Pips

-“God Save the Queen”  The Sex Pistols

-“Who’ll Stop The Rain”  Creedence Clearwater Revival

-“Just My Imagination”  The Temptations

-“My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down”  The Ramones

-“Morning Glory”  Oasis

-“I Would Do Anything For You”  Foster the People

-“Haven’t Met You Yet”  Michael Buble

-“Set Fire To the Rain”  Adele