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Forcing the Moment to Its Crisis

January 18, 2010

This post has been a long time in the making.  I’ve been mulling its contents for…well…years.  Even before I had a blog, I’ve sought to answer this burning internal question.  And, though I have tried and tried, I’ve never been able to reach a definite answer.  It’s my eternal conflict, my personal conundrum, my very own riddle wrapped in an enigma.  I’ve wrestled with it time and again, never reaching a firm conclusion or resolution.

But it’s time I dealt with it, and moved on.  So I’m asking myself one final time…

If you were trapped on a desert island and could only have ten songs to listen to forever and ever, what would they be?

What?  You were expecting an existential crisis?

Dude.  Ten songs.  The SAME ten songs. FOREVER?  That’s heavy, heavy stuff.

And so, in no particular order, I have compiled a list of the songs I cannot escape.   The songs I will listen to when they come on the radio or pop up on my iPod, the songs I will stop reading the back of the macaroni box and cock an ear toward in the grocery store.  The songs I will sing aloud if I hear their strains while shopping for shoes.  (Although, not at DSW.  The music as DSW is abysmal.)

So, here they are, in no particular order. It was hard enough to come up with ONLY ten, you cannot expect me to also rank them.

Disclaimer:  I do not offer that these songs are the greatest compositions in the history of rock music.  I do not claim them to be influential, revolutionary, or changing-the-face-of-rock in any way, shape or form.  These are songs *I* can listen to forever.  Over and over.  I’m drawn to them the same way I’m compelled to watch certain movies even though I’ve seen them a bajillion times.  I will not tolerate argument, or entertain “What about ______?”  discussion.  These are my selections to listen to for eternity.  You want to put your $0.2 in, write your own blog.

1. Africa Toto

Oh come on.  Like you didn’t know that was going to be on the list.  Possibly my favorite song ever, if I were able to rank my top ten, which I am not.

2. Ventura Highway America

Broke my heart when Janet Jackson bastardized the guitar riff from the intro for some craptastic R&B debacle.  Broke. My. Heart.

3. While You See a Chance Steve Windwood

I really love the lyrics in this one…When there’s no one left to leave you; Even you don’t quite believe you; That’s when nothing can deceive you

4. Don’t Stop Believin‘ Journey

Steve Perry at his finest.  Who else could get away with taking a word like “feeling” and making it ten syllables?  Hold on to that feelllllleeeeyaaaayaaayaaayaaayaaayin

5. Separate Ways (Worlds Apart) Journey

Yes, Journey gets two spots.  Shut up.  Listening to this song in my car at the maximum possible volume is the reason I am slightly deaf in my right ear.  I don’t care.  It was worth it.

6. Summer, Highland Falls Billy Joel

Great lyrics—Our reason co-exists with our insanity—with even better piano.  I love the intro and have been known to restart the song three or four times before letting it play all the way through, which annoys my husband to no end.

7. Carry My Cross Third Day

This is a Christian song by a Christian band, and it is one of my absolute favorites in any genre.  It’s kind of dark, very gritty, lots of minor chords, and it’s written as though Jesus is singing the lyrics, which I’m posting because…well…just because.

As long as I remember
I’ve been walking through the wilderness
Praying to the Father
And waiting for my time
I’ve come here with a mission
And soon I’ll give my life for this world

I’m praying in the garden
And I’m looking for a miracle
I find the journey hard but
It’s the reason I was born
Can this cup be passed on?
Lord, I pray your will be done
In this world

So I’ll carry my cross
And I’ll carry the shame
To the end of the road
Through the struggle and pain
And I’ll do it for love
No, it won’t be in vain
Yes, I’ll carry my cross
And I’ll carry the shame

I feel like I’m alone here
And I’m treated like a criminal
The time has come for me now
Even though I’ve done no wrong
Father, please forgive them
They know not what they’ve done
In this world

So I’ll carry my cross
And I’ll carry the shame
To the end of the road
Through the struggle and pain
And I’ll do it for love
No, it won’t be in vain
Yes, I’ll carry my cross
And I’ll carry the shame

Three more days and I’ll be coming back again
Three more days and I’ll be coming back again

So I’ll carry my cross
And I’ll carry the shame
To the end of the road
Through the struggle and pain
And I’ll do it for love
No, it won’t be in vain
Yes, I’ll carry my cross
And I’ll carry the shame

Yes, I’ll carry my cross
And I’ll carry the shame
And I did it for love, yeah

8.  Reeling in the Years Steely Dan

My love for this one is mostly because of the lyrics.  ...The things that pass for knowledge I can’t understand…There are other Fagan and Becker offerings I love almost as much. Runners up include Peg, Hey Nineteen, and Dirty Work.

9.  Seven Bridges Road The Eagles

So many more Eagles songs could make the cut too, but this is my favorite.  The vocal harmonies are excellent.

10.  Tiny Dancer Elton John

I like Levon almost as much, but it’s edged out by the piano in Tiny Dancer.

Rats.  Are we at ten already?  Fifteen. I need fifteen.  No, no. Ten.  I can leave it at ten.  Definitely these ten.

How about twelve? Can I have twelve?  Okay, okay, that defeats the whole question.

Ten* it is.

*Runners up.  I’m sorry, ten?  Really? I’ve been listening to the radio since I was six years old.  I’ve got thirty plus years of music to pick from.  I can’t pick just ten.   I have to at least mention a few more in passing.

Over the Hills and Far Away Led Zeppelin
Gimme the Night George Benson
Hey Jealousy The Gin Blossoms
The Break Up Song Greg Kihn
Closer to Fine Indigo Girls
Everyday The Bodeans
Everyday I Write the Book Elvis Costello
Synchronicity II The Police
The Pretender Jackson Browne
Leader of the Band Dan Fogelberg
Dust in the Wind Kansas
Love Will Find a Way Yes
99 Toto
Walk on the Ocean Toad the Wet Sprocket
Wonderwall Oasis
Sowing the Seeds of Love Tears for Fears
The Logical Song Supertramp
Renegade Styx
Fly Like an Eagle Steve Miller Band
Maggie May Rod Stewart
You Take My Breath Away Rex Smith  (Bwah! NOT. Just seeing if you were paying attention.)
Keep on Loving You REO Speedwagon
Californication Red Hot Chili Peppers
Driver 8 R.E.M.
Solsbury Hill Peter Gabriel
Bizarre Love Triangle New Order

I’m stopping now or we’d be here for the next two weeks years.

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