I don't have a lot of trouble deciding what to listen to most days. I constantly have a song or song fragment in my head and I'm usually behind on music reviews, so I often have a starting place when my day begins and I follow it all to its logical conclusion.
It's not like that every day and that's when Encyclopedia Nerdicus is overwhelmed by the more than 30,000 songs on his iPod and the desire to acquire at least that many more. Where do you begin? Where do you start when you want to listen to everything and can only listen to one song at a time?
When that happens, I take my hand off the wheel and punch the accelerator. I buy the ticket, take the ride, m and speed all the way to the scene of the crash by letting my iPod go on autopilot.
Where did the day take me? Here is the playlist for this MusicMonday. It's presented in the order my iPod served the songs up to me. I didn't skip anything nor have I omitted anything for the sake of protecting my Encyclopedia Nerdicus image. I endorse all of these songs, some more than others. I'll highlight a few of them.
You can't go wrong starting with "Your Blue Room." That's still one of the best songs casual U2 fans and the public at large doesn't know. This is ambient brilliance at its best with Bono singing unbelievably well in both his upper and lower register. Some U2 fans don't consider the Passengers album part of the U2 ouvere and there's a reasonable debate to be had about that. For me, it's one of the best songs of their career- Top 10, easily.
Nick Moss is one of my favorite artists on the planet and his Play It 'Til Tomorrow is an amazing double album of classic Chicago blues at its absolute best. "Mistakes From The Past" is a great track because it shows traditional Chicago blues can extend beyond songs about how my baby done me bad. Moss tells the story of a soldier who has seen too much too young during tours in the Middle East. It's a story that needs to be told and Moss tells it well with a snarling bit of blues riffing.
The Baseball Project is one of the 100 side projects Peter Buck had during his tenure with R.E.M. I'm still so sad about their decision to retire (although I'm looking forward to the Document re-issue) but with outlets like this, we can be certain Buck will continue to make great music. "Pastime" is a great baseball tune that should be listened to every year on Opening Day. Today feels a little like Opening Day for me as a Sox fan, having seen Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford, and Adrian Gonzalez shipped to Los Angeles. I'm looking forward to Opening Day next year because this year has been a disaster. I'm looking forward to Opening Day next year because those three players better not be the only faces missing from the Sox dugout (there's a milk carton that needs your face, Bobby V). Sox fans also owe it to themselves to hear the track "Ted Fucking Williams."
Ben Folds Five is reuniting! They've finished the record and started filming videos and prepping it for release this year. In the meantime, can I please say The Unauthorized Biography... is still my favorite of their entire recorded output and one of the underrated gems of the '90s. What is it I love about this song? I die laughing every time he gets to the line "uncle Richard, me, and James Earl Jones."
Here's the full 25-track random playlist, brought to you buy me and my iPod...
- U2/Brian Eno/Passengers - "Your Blue Room"
- Tuatara - "The Getaway"
- Republica - "Drop Dead Gorgeous"
- Nick Moss & The Flip Tops - "Mistakes From The Past"
- Back Door Slam - "Too Late"
- Chuck Berry - "His Daughter Caroline"
- Mannish Boys - "Too Tired"
- Guns N' Roses - "It's So Easy"
- The Baseball Project - "Past Time"
- Bob Dylan - "Girl From The North Country" (Freewheelin' version)
- Back Door Slam - "Heavy On My Mind"
- Jimi Hendrix Experience - "Purple Haze"
- Pinetop Perkins and Willie "Big Eyes" Smith - "Gambling Blues"
- Foo Fighters - "Good Grief"
- Ben Folds Five - "Lullabye"
- AC/DC - "Black Ice"
- The Rolling Stones - "It's Only Rock 'N Roll (But I Like It)"
- Coldplay - "Life in Technicolor"
- Van Halen - "As Is"
- George Harrison - "Fish On The Sand"
- John Lennon - "Jealous Guy"
- George Harrison - "Here Comes The Moon"
- Dave Matthews Band - "What Would You Say"
- Mark Lanegan Band - "Message To Mine"
- Babyshambles - "Sedative"