Everywhere, Always: The Birthday Disc 2010 ...
The cover of this year's CD reads:
Here? Again? So soon?
The time, where does it go?
Another year, another collection.
Songs that please me.
Some peppy. Some profound.
All that resonate with me in some way.
The past year has brought with it many changes.
Music, as ever, has played an extraordinary part.
It drives my days. It sustains me. As do all of you.
Thank you for being a part of my life.
Turn it on. Turn it up. Sing along. Dance.
The songs are ordered very particularly, for flow from one track to the next. Try to listen along in your head. So then, the songs and my reason for choosing each:
1. Run Runaway, Slade
The drum and guitar intro makes me happy. It's one of those songs that hooked me the first time I heard it and hasn't let go, and sets the tone for an assortment of older cuts that pop up throughout the disc.
2. Who Loves You, Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons
All those "Jersey Boys" commercials got to me. But seriously, what an infectious tune! Does anyone not smile when they hear it?
3. Little Secrets, Passion Pit
Boppy, peppy, happy fun! With some pretty strong bass baked right in, so you can be that person when driving down the street, the one everyone hears coming.
4. Talking In Your Sleep, The Romantics
Ah, I remember owning this album on cassette. Remember cassettes? 'Twas a great song then, 'tis a great song now.
5. High Speed, Coldplay
Taking the tempo down for a track here. I love this cut from "Parachutes," the band's first effort. It's not "typical" Coldplay. It's more moody, dreamlike.
6. Coming Back To Life, Pink Floyd
Continuing with the mellow for a little while longer. For a few verses, anyway. I've owned The Division Bell for years, so I'm sure I'd heard this song before, but recently, when it shuffled up, it was like I was hearing it for the first time. It resonated deeply with a moment in my life and became an instant favorite.
7. Like The Way I Do, Melissa Etheridge
Ah, Melissa. I've always liked her music, but having finally seen her live, I have a much greater appreciation for her as an artist. This is a hugely powerful cut.
8. Wouldn't It Be Nice, The Beach Boys
Earlier this year, I had the startling realization that my iTunes was entirely devoid of tunes by The Beach Boys. What?! How could that be? I rectified the situation as quickly as possible – which, in this digital age, was pretty quickly – and appreciate the contrast of this sweet tune coming off of Melissa's driving demand of her lover.
9. Wide Eyes, Local Natives
New to me, this band. Love the rhythm. Love the vocal.
10. Sister Golden Hair, America
Right? When's the last time you heard this song? It's so great! And hey, my hair is pretty golden these days, thanks to J-D!
11. Fallen, Vib Gyor
Sort of a U2-Coldplay hybrid, this tune. Why this band isn't equally known, I have no idea.
12. You Can't Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want), Joe Jackson
Were truer words ever spoken?
13. This Way Up, Brian Ray
This is the title track of Brian's new album, a rockin' good time, both the cut and the disc! Check it out!
14. All Or Nothin' At All, Bruce Springsteen
Because it wouldn't be a birthday disc without The Boss.
15. Blinded By The Light, Manfred Mann's Earth Band
Yup, I followed a Bruce cut with a Bruce cover. But oh, what a cover.
16. Turning Japanese, The Vapors
Need I explain?
17. With A Little Help From My Friends, Joe Cocker
Had to include it. My friends ... oh, my friends. They make my life rich in so many ways.
18. The End, Kings of Leon
The band has a cut titled "Birthday," so you'd think that would have been the logical choice. But "The End" has one of the best basslines ever. The clear choice.