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ESSENTIAL ARTISTS    •    OTHER FAVORITES    •    PLAYLISTS    •    TOP TRACKS  •  THE BLUES

We all make playlists. We have playlists for when we’re sitting on the beach or for a long road trip. We have a playlist for parties. There are those songs we listen to when we’re happy, sad, or want to dance around the house in our underwear. Playlists could be the best of one artist or of one kind of music. You might even make a playlist that has the same word in every song.  Maybe you put together a “Best of” from the year you graduated or got married. Then there’s the times you just hit “random” and enjoy the list the computer compiles for you. The thing is, it’s a lot easier now than ever to make a playlist., especially for those of a certain age who remember when a playlist might have been a stack of records meant to play in a certain order, or hours meticulously putting songs on a cassette to give to someone special.

FIVE STAR

I catalog all my music through iTunes, so these are my 5-star rated songs. Looking over the tracks now, I can see how varied my tastes have run. There’s a little bit of everything in here, including a pair of Elvis songs, classics like the Beatles, along with some blues and soul, new wave, grunge and a few one-hit wonders. My favorite artists are well-represented with the Allman Brother, Led Zeppelin, Eric Clapton, and the Police. Each song takes me to a particular time or place, or evokes a certain memory or emotion.

Solsbury Hill  /  Peter Gabriel
Against All Odds  /  Phil Collins
Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic  /  The Police
Fell On Black Days  /  Soundgarden
Under the Milky Way  /  The Church
Hurt  /  Johnny Cash
I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For  /  U2
Come Pick Me Up  /  Ryan Adams
Alone Again (Naturally)  /  Gilbert O'Sullivan
Hallelujah  /  Jeff Buckley
In Your Eyes  /  Peter Gabriel
New York Minute  /  Don Henley
A Song for You  /  Ray Charles
Old Love  /  Eric Clapton
Under Pressure (w/David Bowie)  /  Queen
Sunset Grill  /  Don Henley
With Or Without You  /  U2
Take Me Home  /  Phil Collins
America  /  Simon & Garfunkel
You've Got A Friend  /  James Taylor
Omegaman  /  The Police
Brothers In Arms  /  Dire Straits
Lovesong  /  The Cure
This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)  /  Talking Heads
Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me  /  The Smiths

Solsbury Hill  /  Peter Gabriel
Against All Odds  /  Phil Collins
Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic  /  The Police
Fell On Black Days  /  Soundgarden
Under the Milky Way  /  The Church
Hurt  /  Johnny Cash
I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For  /  U2
Come Pick Me Up  /  Ryan Adams
Alone Again (Naturally)  /  Gilbert O'Sullivan
Hallelujah  /  Jeff Buckley
In Your Eyes  /  Peter Gabriel
New York Minute  /  Don Henley
A Song for You  /  Ray Charles
Old Love  /  Eric Clapton
Under Pressure (w/David Bowie)  /  Queen
Sunset Grill  /  Don Henley
With Or Without You  /  U2
Take Me Home  /  Phil Collins
America  /  Simon & Garfunkel
You've Got A Friend  /  James Taylor
Omegaman  /  The Police
Brothers In Arms  /  Dire Straits
Lovesong  /  The Cure
This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)  /  Talking Heads
Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me  /  The Smiths

RAINY DAY

Anyone who knows me knows that I can get moody at times. I'm a bit of a loner who just wants to go off in a corner and listen to depressing music. With multiple Elliott Smith and Adele songs, it's surprising that I don't walk in front of a bus. (Don't worry, I just like the music).

Solsbury Hill  /  Peter Gabriel
Against All Odds  /  Phil Collins
Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic  /  The Police
Fell On Black Days  /  Soundgarden
Under the Milky Way  /  The Church
Hurt  /  Johnny Cash
I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For  /  U2
Come Pick Me Up  /  Ryan Adams
Alone Again (Naturally)  /  Gilbert O'Sullivan
Hallelujah  /  Jeff Buckley
In Your Eyes  /  Peter Gabriel
New York Minute  /  Don Henley
A Song for You  /  Ray Charles
Old Love  /  Eric Clapton
Under Pressure (w/David Bowie)  /  Queen
Sunset Grill  /  Don Henley
With Or Without You  /  U2
Take Me Home  /  Phil Collins
America  /  Simon & Garfunkel
You've Got A Friend  /  James Taylor
Omegaman  /  The Police
Brothers In Arms  /  Dire Straits
Lovesong  /  The Cure
This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)  /  Talking Heads
Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me  /  The Smiths

BLUES

On the other end of the scale from the moody music is my strange enjoyment of some disco tracks. I can’t tell you why. I’m not a dancer, thankfully, but there are times when “Get Down Tonight” by KC and the Sunshine Band pops up, and I feel the need to get up and boogie. It’s not a pretty sight, and it only happens when no one else is around.

Sweet Home Chicago  /  Magic Sam
Messin' with the Kid  /  Junior Wells' Chicago Blues Band
Statesboro Blues  /  The Allman Brothers Band
Born in Chicago  /  Paul Butterfield Blues Band
Juke  /  Little Walter & His Night Cats
Three O'Clock Blues  /  B.B. King
Christo Redemptor  /  Charlie Musselwhite
The Sky Is Crying  /  Elmore James
Mannish Boy  /  Muddy Waters
Key to the Highway  /  Little Walter
Eyesight To The Blind   /  Sonny Boy Williamson
Texas Flood  /  Larry Davis & his Band
Dust My Broom  /  Elmore James
Rocket 88  /  The Jimmy Cotton Blues Quartet
Cross Road Blues  /  Robert Johnson
I’m Your Hoochie Coochie Man  /  Muddy Waters
Shake Your Moneymaker  /  Elmore James
Smokestack Lightning  /  Howlin' Wolf
I Can't Quit You Baby  /  Otis Rush
Wang Dang Doodle  /  Koko Taylor
Spoonful  /  Howlin' Wolf
Caldonia  /  B.B. King
Who Do You Love  /  Bo Diddley
I Just Want to Make Love to You  /  Muddy Waters
Spellbound  /  Koko Taylor
Reconsider Baby  /  Lowell Fulson
Milk Cow Blues  /  Sleepy John Estes
Thrill Is Gone  /  B.B. King
Back Door Man  /  Howlin' Wolf & Willie Dixon
I'm A King Bee  /  Slim Harpo
That's All Right  /  Arthur (Big'Boy) Crudup
Hound Dog  /  Willie Mae 'Big Mama' Thornton
Good Morning Little Schoolgirl  /  Junior Wells' Chicago Blues Band
Boom Boom  /  John Lee Hooker
It Must Have Been The Devil  /  Otis Spann
First Time I Met The Blues  /  Buddy Guy
When The Levee Breaks  /  Memphis Minnie

MICHIGAN SONGS

I was born in 1964, right in the middle of Beatlemania. But my parents weren’t particularly Beatles fans. My mom had a stack of 45s of the music of her teen years in the 50s, including Elvis and the like. My dad, a Purdue marching bandsman, leaned toward that genre, along with some classical. My exposure to the current music of the day came on the radio, and really only when we were on vacation in northern Michigan. The radio was on almost all the time, and AM station we had on to was WIDG, (“Widge by the Bridge” for its proximity to the Mackinac Bridge).  They played pretty much top 40 music, so the popular songs from about 1970-74 have really stuck with me. They have stuck so much that when songs of that era pop up, my sister and I refer to them as “Michigan songs,” and I have a real fondness for them still today.

Brandy  /  Looking Glass
Love Grows Where My Rosemary Goes  /  Edison Lighthouse
All By Myself  /  Eric Carmen
Superstar  /  Carpenters
Doctor My Eyes  /  Jackson Browne
Band of Gold  /  Freda Payne
It's Magic  /  Pilot
Guitar Man  /  Bread
Oh What A Lonely Boy  /  Andrew Gold
Don't Pull Your Love  /  "Hamilton, Joe Frank & Reynolds"
Summer Breeze  /  Seals and Crofts
Could It Be I'm Falling In Love  /  The Spinners
Tin Man  /  America
Rock Me Gently  /  Andy Kim
It's Too Late  /  Carole King
Sooner Or Later  /  The Grass Roots
Then Came You  /  Dionne Warwick
Alone Again (Naturally)  /  Gilbert O'Sullivan
It's Too Late to Turn Back Now  /  Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose
Here Comes That Rainy Day Feeling Again  /  The Fortunes
Rock The Boat  /  Hues Corporation
Saturday In The Park  /  Chicago
Horse With No Name  /  America
I Can See Clearly Now  /  Johnny Nash
Precious And Few  /  Climax Blues Band

NEW WAVE

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BEST OF THE 2000s

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SUPERSTARS

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