Recently I was asked to come up with a list of 10 albums that have stuck with me without researching them. I provided the list and then thought I’d break the rules and provide a few more words and research. So here is a list of ten albums that stuck with me. Each one goes Artist – Title – Time that it was introduced to me. I also included some honorable mentions.
The Blues Brothers Movie Soundtrack – Probably Middle School
This movie had an enormous impact on me when I first saw it though I can’t pin down which year it was. I remember it was winter break though and it was cold outside and the whole family sat down to watch it on VHS. It’s not like I was unaware of Blues, Country, Big Band Jazz and Soul but it definitely made me seek them out more.
Metallica – ….And Justice for All – Fifth Grade
The very first album I remember owning. I can’t remember if my mom bought it for me or my dad but understandably neither gave a crap about Metallica. The cassette was crushed later in a horrible accident that I don’t fully remember. A year ago, I found the replacement cassette crushed in my basement. I was probably not meant to have an intact copy of this album. I still like to rock out to some good Metallica though.
The Who – Who’s Next – Middle School
I always loved the Who and encountered it pretty early in my life. However, when I got a little older I realized that my favorite song from their whole discography is Behind Blue Eyes. I try to be a good guy and I have been doing better in recent years but I have an anger problem and I can be a real asshole. In the past few years as I’ve come to grips with this the line “Noone bites back as hard on their anger as I do” means a whole lot more.
They Might Be Giants – Flood – Middle School
This band is catchy as hell and I really fell in love with them over one summer during Midle School. In fact, a friend and I made two different music videos from their songs at the time. The one I remember is “Particle Man”. I played the part of smaller man. I was always conveniently short in life. Also, as a young liberal child of two liberal parents, I couldn’t resist “Your Racist Friend”.
The Beatles – Abbey Road – High School
I have distinct and powerful memories of listening to the whole album as I walked home from school. I have an almost pathological distaste for slow songs but somehow I made an exception for some of the songs on this album and especially “Here Comes the Sun”. During this time my love affair with “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer” was born an I still usually choose that when somebody asks for my favorite Beatles song.
Lynyrd Skynyrd – Pronounced Leh-Nerd Skin-nerd – Middle School/High School
I inherited a love of Lynyrd Skynyrd from my mother and “Gimme Three Steps” has a special importance to our family. Aside from that, I always liked the fun energy and pace of Lynyrd Skynyrd songs and the fact that I could sing along to almost any song. To this date, the only concert I have ever gone to was Skynyrd at the Maryland State Fair. I sang along until I was practically hoarse and it was the first time that I smelled marijuana smoke.
Jonathan Coulton – Best. Concert. Ever. – After College
JoCo is absolutely awesome. I play “I Feel Fantastic” and “First of May” when I feel depressed. I sing along to “Still Alive” and “Re: Your Brains”. Alright, I sing along to all of his songs. I attend his performances virtually over the internets yearly when he performs at PAX. “Code Monkey” made me never want to work in an office and then I got an office job anyway. It’s just a great album to throw on when I want to feel good.
Annie Get Your Gun Soundtrack – Middle School
I played this on a loop at many times as well. There’s not a bad song in the bunch. I grew up with the Ethel Merman recording but Hutton was great in the movie as well. Hell, every version I have heard of this is good. This was one of the first exceptions to my No Musicals rule that has become my No Crappy Musicals rule.
Buckcherry – Buckcherry – High School
I have an anger problem that I have had since I can remember. When I was going to blow my top, I would go to my room and crank All Lit Up and sing along. To this day, Buckcherry feels like letting my anger out. The album also appeals to the same fun part of my brain that heavy metal music hits.
Ben Folds Five – Whatever and Ever Amen – High School
I found this left behind in a classroom at Carnegie-Mellon University and after that I really became a fan of Ben Folds. I probably got annoying about it at some points. I do have a tendency to dive headfirst into being a fan of things sometimes. Still, I maintain that Ben Folds is great music. One Angry Dwarf and Hiroshima (not on this album) are definitely my favorites.
Green Day – Dookie
The Guess Who – Greatest Hits
Queen – Greatest Hits I and II
Ozzy Ozbourne – The Ozzman Cometh: Greatest Hits
Heart – Greatest Hits
The Charlie Daniels Band – A Decade of Hits
Guys and Dolls Soundtrack
Jurrasic 5 – Jurrasic 5