The Songs No iPod Should Be Without


Sometimes I just like to include songs because they’re great.  When that happens, there is really no rhyme or reason to the inclusion of the songs.  They’re included because they’re fun, because they’re excellent.  They’re here because they NEED to be on your iPod.  So, this column really is all over the place.  It features classic rock, progressive rock, a new wave one-hit wonder, a cover, and some indy pop.  I hope you like ‘em.

149. Dream On – Aerosmith
Because it is an amazing song.  That’s why.  Like you even had to ask…
I recently read Steven Tyler’s Does The Noise In My Head Bother You? memoir and Tyler himself describes the
Half my life’s in books written pages
Live and learn from fools and from sages
You know it’s true
All the things come back to you
Sing with me, sing for the years
Sing, for the laughter abd sing for the tears
Sing with me, if it’s just for today
Maybe tomorrow the lord will take you away
lyric as “I don’t even know where I came up with that…I may be a monster, but I’m a sensitive monster.”  Neither do I but it’s absolutely phenomenal.  Hell, it’s arguably the prototype for the power ballad.  It’s got distorted guitars, an orchestral arrangement and strings.
Recommended versions can be found on: Aerosmith (Columbia, 1973),Greatest Hits (Columbia, 1980), Big Ones [as a bonus track in CD 2] (Geffen, 1994), Young Lust: The Aerosmith Anthology (Geffen, 2001), O, Yeah! Ultimate Aerosmith Hits (Columbia, 2002), Gold (Geffen, 2005), Devil’s Got A New Disguise: The Very Best of Aerosmith (Sony, 2006) and the live collections: Live! Bootleg (Columbia, 1978), Classics Live I (Columbia, 1986) and A Little South of Sanity (Geffen, 1998).  It also appears on both of the band’s box sets.
150. Point of Know Return – Kansas
Because like the old State Farm commercial said—it’s “one of life’s guilty pleasures.”  Yeah I know it’s on the same album as “Dust In the Wind.”  That’s a great song too, but this one rocks!
Your father, he said he needs you
Your mother, she says she loves you
Your brothers, they echo your words:
“How far to the point of know return?”
“Well, how long?”
Recommended versions can be found on: Point of Know Return (Kirshner, 1977—re-mastered and re-issued in 2002 by Epic/Legacy with bonus tracks) and on the live Two For The Show (Kirshner, 1979 and the expanded 30th Anniversary Edition released in 2008 on Legacy).  The song can also be found on “Best Of” collections: The Best of Kansas (Epic/Legacy, 1999), Ultimate Kansas (Epic/Legacy, 2002) and the Kansas Box Set (Epic/Legacy, 1994).
151. Dry Heaves – Moneyshot
With just a little more luck this quirky group could have been They Might Be Giants or maybe even Panic At The Disco or Weezer.  They have catchy lyrics and a nice poppy sound. Frontman Asa Somers rocks out on Broadway as well as with the band.  Sadly, this group never caught on as they should have, even though they released a number of albums and played tons of New York City dates.  Check out these lyrics:
Hold me Fold me into shape like an envelope
Lick me Stick me like a stamp on a goodbye note
I threw away all your pictures today but still I see your face everywhere
I’m troubled and doubled over but nothing’s coming up but air
Love me, shove me down your throat like a bitter pill
Need me, Bleed me ‘til I’m gone like I know you will
Recommended version can be found on: Bliss (CD Baby, 2001).
152. Digging Your Scene – The Blow Monkeys
Because the lyric is soooooo deep.  Check ‘em out:
I just got your message baby-
So sad to see you fade away.
What in the world is this feeling?
Catch a breath and leave me reeling!
It’ll get you in the end- it’s god’s revenge.
Oh- I know I should come clean
But I prefer to deceive.
Every day I walk alone
And pray that god won’t see me.
I know it’s wrong, I know it’s wrong.
 Tell me why is it
I’m digging your scene?
I know I’ll die, baby…
The song is funky and infectious; itfeatures a swirling melange of guitar and keys over a laidback nasal lead vocal. Ya gotta hear it to truly appreciate it.
Recommended versions can be found on: Animal Magic (RCA, 1986) and Choices: The Singles Collection (BMG, 1989).
153. Louie Louie – The Kingsmen
Because it’s possibly the best cover song ever recorded.  Recorded in one take back in 1963 with a garage flavor this version of the song has become man all-time classic.  Many people thought that the lyrics were dirty.  They weren’t.  People copuldn’t decipher them.  For the record they are:
Louie Louie, oh no
Me gotta go
Aye-yi-yi-yi, Isaid
Louie Louie, oh baby
Me gotta go 
Fine little girl waits for me
Catch a ship across the sea
Sail that ship about, all alone
Never know if I make it home 
Louie Louie, oh no
Me gotta go
Aye-yi-yi-yi, Isaid
Louie Louie, oh baby
Me gotta go 
Three nights and days I sail the sea
Think of girl, constantly
On that ship, I dream she’s there
I smell the rose in her hair. 
Louie Louie, oh no
Me gotta go
Aye-yi-yi-yi, I said
Louie Louie, oh baby
Me gotta go 
Okay, let’s give it to ’em, right now! 
See Jamaica, the moon above
It won’t be long, me see me love
Take her in my arms again
Tell her I’ll never leave again 
Louie Louie, oh no
Me gotta go
Aye-yi-yi-yi, Isaid
Louie Louie, oh baby
Me gotta go 
Let’s take it on outa here now
Let’s go!!
Recommended versions can be found on: The Kingsmen In Person (their 1963 debut re-issued on CD by Sundazed) and more compliations than this space will allow me to list.
154. Ca Plane Pour Moi – Plastic Bertrand
It’s here because it’s the French version of the song that Elton Motello would adapt into English as “Jet Boy, Jet Girl.” Because it rocks!  Because the song is a New Wave classic…because it’s blissfull and almost unbalanced and deranged in it’s silliness and joy. Hell, it’s here becasue it’s basic three-chord Rock ‘n’ Roll that has elements of The Beach Boys, The Four Seasons and driving classic rock.
Recommended versions can be found on: You Tube at  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsXknE8LOEI, on the “Ca Plane Pour Moi”/“Pogo Pogo” single (AMC, 1977), the An 1 album (AMC, 1978), Ca Plane Pour Moi (Repertoire, 1978) and Grand Success: Greatest Hits (Attic Records, 1981).
So there you have it–the latest installment of The Songs No iPod Should Be Without. Check these songs out; they really are fun!
So now what?  That’s right.  You guessed it.  It’s that time again…tell me some of your favorite songs.  What do you like and why…what are the songs you can’t live without?  Send me an e-mail and tell me what music you love.  Tell me why the song moves you.   I’ll feature your song selection in a future column.  Christine from Long Island read the column online and suggested both the Moneyshot and The Blow Monkeys songs.  Great suggestions, Christine. E-mail me at: [email protected]. Type Can’t Live Without in the Topic. Til Next time!
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