Sunday, June 22, 2008

Desert Island Discs

Someone recently asked me to compile my top ten Desert Island Discs list. (For those not familiar with the concept, this is ten albums/discs you'd most want to have to listen to over and over again if you were stuck on a desert island). I'm firmly convinced that the time period of the music on the list often says a great deal about the age of the listener; a derivation of Harlan Ellison's "golden age" theory (the golden age of almost anything dates to about the time you were thirteen to eighteen) almost always seems to apply.

So here are my ten Desert Island Discs--and I've tried to minimize the "Best of" compilations, although a couple made the list because they were the albums I listened to most by those artists.

(1) Abbey Road - The Beatles
(2) Tracy - The Cuff Links
(3) Ball - Iron Butterfly
(4) If I Could Only Remember My Name - David Crosby
(5) All Things Must Pass - George Harrison
(6) Association's Greatest Hits - The Association
(7) Camelot - Soundtrack
(8) Crosby Stills & Nash - you can figure out who
(9) Through the Past Darkly - The Rolling Stones
(10) Let It Be - The Beatles

And there you have it--I think every one of them came out between 1968 and 1971 with the exception of the Camelot soundtrack. And I would have been 15 to 18 during those years...

And yes, I may very well be the only person in the world who'd put the Cuff Links album on his Desert Island Discs list--but I love the harmonies and the counterpoint on that album! If the voice of the Cuff Links sound familiar, it's Ron Dante, who was the lead vocalist on all the Archie's hits. He is, in fact, every voice on the Cuff Links album. It's a wonderful vocal tour de force by a man whose name never actually appears on the album!


JaniceG said...

And here I thought I was the only person who still had a copy of The Association's Greatest Hits :->

Marrying someone 10 years younger than me has meant that the only way to stay sane is not to look at each other's iPods - like you, my musical tastes were formed in the late 1960s/70s (not to mention 40s) while Stephen's tastes lean more towards indie bands from Iceland.

cliff said...

I rank "Requiem" as one of my favorite songs of all times, in fact, and I liked the Greatest Hits so much that I went back and picked up all of the Association's solo discs. Alas, each of them has its moments but lacks the overall vocal strength that a distilled compilation offers. There is a nice multi-disc Greatest Hits set as well, but I prefer the original disc--all goodness, no filler.

I'm a big forties and fifties fan, too, and one of the reasons I keep XM radio is the fact that it allows me to tune in to the 40s channel and listen to a lot of songs that I don't know, interspersed with gems that I do know.