Dreamwidth friend trepkos asked me “If you could only listen to five bands for the rest of your life, who would they be?”
I don’t think this question was as hard to figure out as I thought it was going to be! While I enjoy listening to Spotify and finding new music, I definitely have a lot of go-to artists for days when I just need a certain something. My personal tastes lean towards bands that I can sing along with. I’m all about singer/songwriter and lean pretty heavy on the indie/folk/alternative styles.
So, here are my top 5:
5. “Weird Al” Yankovic
I’ve been listening to “Weird Al” since I was a kid and he always makes me laugh. If I’m going to be limited to 5 musical experiences, then having “Weird Al” in the mix guarantees I get laughs and also a wide range of musical genres. Because I wouldn’t want to live the rest of my life without the occasional accordion solo during a polka based on overplayed top 40 hits.
I had a habit of stealing my Mom’s music and Sting was definitely her guy first. But it is hard to deny his talent and ability to write catchy songs with smart lyrics. Always lots of good allusions in Sting songs. I could probably survive just on Ten Summoner’s Tales for awhile, that whole album is perfect. Love songs, story songs and everything in between. If you have never heard it, hop over to Spotify now and make sure you listen past the “singles” tracks and get to those deeper cuts – the one about the seven brothers that save the town, the other about the nerdy guy trying to best the muscle-bound suitor, and the kinda creepy ‘St. Augustine in Hell’.
Another band that both my Mom and I like, though I think I found them first! Maybe? At any rate, we found them on our own and then both realized we liked them. Even saw them in concert!
It only makes sense that I would be a fan after being raised on music like Sting’s. Bastille’s lyrics tend to tell stories and also are full of references to other works, everything from ‘Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ to ‘Twin Peaks’. And I feel like they do work with an ALBUM mindset, which I also appreciate from bands nowadays. We are so used to streaming singles and thus a lot of groups just make albums of singles, but I feel like both ‘Bad Blood’ and ‘Wild World’ have a flow to the songs when you listen to them from start to finish. With only TWO albums out and neither of them new, Bastille was still my top band of 2018, so clearly I like going back to them when I need to rock out.
Another band that I keep going back to. Hayley Williams’ voice is so unique. And I love how they keep trying to grow and change with each album. If you listen to their very early stuff and then to the newest songs, you can see that they are progressing as musicians and writers. It’s a scary thing for a band to do but it gives them a lasting power that I don’t think a lot of their peers will have. The latest album, After Laughter, had this fun retro vibe, with hints of the 80s and 90s music that I’m sure they listened to while growing up, but it was still Paramore through and through. And, again, the stories in the songs keep maturing too. Hayley even pointed this out at the last concert we went to, prefacing ‘Misery Business’ by saying that it really isn’t a healthy attitude and she has grown as a person since then…but damn it is fun to sing along.
AND NOW, MY NUMBER ONE CHOICE
—– !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!DRUM ROLL!!!!!!!!!!!!! ———
1. The Beatles
I fell in love with The Beatles back in Middle School and it is a love that lasts forever. In fact, I just had them on this morning because I needed something to start the day off right. There is a Beatles album for every mood, every time of day. They are always there for me. They were my first music based fandom. I don’t think I’ve ever hit the same level of obsession as I did with them for any other band. I learned so much about life, love and music from these four lads from Liverpool. If you told me I could only listen to one band for the rest of my life, I’d have all of their albums in my arms before you could finish the sentence.
YOUR TURN! What are your top 5 bands/artists?