Does anyone remember that show (and CD series) called All Back To Mine where established artists picked and discussed music that had a profound effect on them?
Well, whether you do or not, I’m not particularly famous (although I have been on Sky News for one whole second a decade ago – which might be one second more than many of you, so there!) but I was inspired to have a little fool around with creating and sharing a Spotify playlist. Click here (you’ll need the client installed and a browser that recognises the link.)
I’ve been in a nostalgic mood so I compiled a list of 10 (not chosen with a great deal of thought as that might’ve killed the enthusiasm to make one) songs that were notable in my younger years. Some substitutions had to be made as not all my choices are in the catalogue. The whole thing lasts an hour.
So, let’s discuss it: People know me primarily as a hard rock fan since my early teens and so to admit some of this stuff is a bit like flashing in public, but this is what I grew up with, so I won’t deny it.
I started with ABBA‘s Chiquitita, as an ABBA hits compilation vinyl in the early 80’s borrowed by my father from a public library was one of the first records I remember dancing (i.e. spinning ’til I got dizzy) to. I preferred them over The Beatles, and still do which might be sacrilege to some. ABBA made pop music but it was good pop music. Not the soulless stuff you see now.
The next three I’m not sure which of I heard first but they were all 1987 cassettes when my mother actually purchased albums of my choice (sometimes for reasons like only knowing the lead single or liking the art). I picked Just Good Friends from Michael Jackson‘s Bad as that’s not so over-picked like Man In The Mirror, and a kid in the 80’s had to own an MJ album. The man was in his prime then. I also liked Donna Summer‘s Dinner With Gershwin, and Bee Gees’ You Win Again. The latter song instilled a vague interest in drums, though I didn’t try ’til much later. I just liked the sound of the simple beat. I also purchased Level 42‘s poppy Running In The Family and have the dark ballad It’s Over here. That was an album I picked based on the artwork but fortunately it was a good choice. My mother had to return a few bad choices (I couldn’t stand some band called Odyssey(?)).
I also remember where I got all these records. Not names you’d hear of now: Our Price and Woolworths.
I didn’t purchase any more music until my teens when Metallica came into my radar and made me also pester for a drumkit (I didn’t care for grunge, which didn’t tick with me and even now I only like it to a casual degree), but before I bought one of their albums (tape trading saw me out for a while) I first bought Megadeth‘s Youthanasia. A few of the thrash bands at this point were putting out more commercial material but for me this was an easy way to first get into what I once thought was music for Hell’s Angels and no one else. I liked the lyrics of Addicted To Chaos, so that’s here.
I wasn’t into Britpop, but the one band I did take to heart was The Verve and Bitter Sweet Symphony from an ottherwise uninspired album. If anything I liked their back catalogue more.
Then in my last academic years there was Scottish instrumental band Mogwai (I chose the 16min Mogwai Fear Satan from Mogwai Young Team) who also made me want to play guitar a bit. Depeche Mode‘s Walking In My Shoes is my fave song of theirs of all time which is funny as I had previously made fun of the band but warmed to them when I first met my strayed girlfriend (who I’ve now become cordial with at least).
I end with Public Image Ltd.‘s Disappointed as that’s one of the last songs that feels distant now; I got into them somewhere in ’02 in that archaeological way. The last 6 or 7yrs of music still feels too new to me or is also most likely from the same artists as I don’t seek out new people as much as I used to.
So, yeah, that’s it. It’s perhaps a typical pop to rock trajectory, but that’s how my lot is.
I’m hoping to find other peoples’ top tens as it’s fascinating as well as good in taking me out of my own normal choices.