10 Albums You Should Have That Maybe You Don’t

Here’s a list of albums that you may not have heard, but that will keep you interested on that desert island:

Album Artist
Sea Change Beck
Soup Blind Melon
Miles From Our Home Cowboy Junkies
Smile The Jayhawks
Streetcore Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros
Glimmer Kim Richey
Lola Versus Powerman The Kinks
Breathe Midnight Oil
Bryter Layter Nick Drake
Trace Son Volt


If I could only play guitar

When I hear it, I long to be able to do it. Not just the music, but the emotion it carries. It must be jealousy, really. I’ve tried to play before, and I can’t. It is one reason I love music so much; it is something I will never be able to do. But if I could play guitar, I would want to play like one of these:

Mark Knopfler
Mike Campbell
Lindsey Buckingham
Eric Clapton
Carlos Santana
Stevie Ray Vaughn
Willie Nelson
Eddie Van Halen
Michael Timmins
Steve Howe

What I didn’t include here are three jazz guitarist I got to see once – Al Di Meola, John McLaughlin and Paco De Lucia. Their virtuosity is really beyond comparing to anything I have ever witnessed. And yet, those listed above carry lasting memories for me in their music and in my awesome air-guitar abilities.

Gracie’s Voice

Gracie is becoming such a wonderful performer. Her voice is growing powerful and sweet and I imagine her singing some of my favorite songs. This is a list of female vocals I think she would be great at performing. Of course, none of them are anything she has ever heard before. After all, none of these are show tunes. But I take it as a personal triumph that she listened to this play list and actually like some of them. I know because I heard her singing them when she didn’t think I was listening.

Song Time Artist Album
These Are Days 3:43 10,000 Maniacs Our Time in Eden
Few and Far Between 3:16 10,000 Maniacs Our Time in Eden
Miles From Our Home 4:35 Cowboy Junkies Miles From Our Home
Think About Me 2:44 Fleetwood Mac Tusk
Never Forget 3:34 Fleetwood Mac Tusk
Useless Desires 5:50 Patty Griffin Impossible Dream
The Pearl 5:02 Emmylou Harris Red Dirt Girl
Prince of Darkness 5:23 Indigo Girls Indigo Girls
Lonestar 3:06 Norah Jones Come Away With Me
Your Love Made a U Turn 2:35 Tift Merritt Tambourine
Orphan Train 5:45 Allison Moorer Mockingbird
Human 3:56 The Pretenders Viva El Amor
Blue for No Reason 4:13 Bonnie Rait Fundamental
Just Like the Moon 4:30 Kim Richey Kim Richey
Here I Go Again 2:54 Kim Richey Kim Richey
This Love 3:59 Kim Richey Rise
Heart Lies 2:44 The Waifs Shelter Me
Sidewalks of the City 3:47 Lucinda Williams Sweet Old World
Can’t Let Go 3:29 Lucinda Williams Car Wheels on a Gravel Road
Metal Firecracker 3:31 Lucinda Williams Car Wheels on a Gravel Road
20 Songs/1 Hour 19 Minutes


My Playlist 30604 – Nah, leave it, yeah.

This list is inspired by my oldest daughter, Christina. She posted a song on my Facebook page she said always reminded her of me – Destiny by Zero 7. So, I started with that and added the song that always reminds me of her – Sadly Beautiful by The Replacements. The rest of the list is constructed around those two songs. You’ll find some great new music from David Bowie and some pieces I’ve just discovered, like Gob Iron with Jay Farrar from Son Volt, Whiskeytown with Ryan Adams before he was Ryan Adams and Brotherhood with Chris Robinson from The Black Crowes. The rest are some old favorites that seemed to complement the flavor of my two theme songs.

Hope you enjoy the recipe.

Song Time Artist Album
Don’t Be Sad 3:21 Whiskeytown Pneumonia
Reflections on a Broken Mirror 7:38 Chris Robinson Brotherhood Big Moon Ritual
Destiny 5:38 Zero 7 Simple Things
Lions 5:04 Dire Straits Dire Straits
Storms 5:31 Fleetwood Mac Tusk
Fields of Gold 3:42 Sting Ten Summoner’s Tales
Sadly Beautiful 3:16 The Replacements All Shook Down
Three Little Birds 3:00 Bob Marley & The Wailers Exodus
Paint It, Black 3:23 The Rolling Stones Aftermath
Great Spirit 5:27 Robert Plant Fate of Nations
The Stars (Are Out Tonight) 3:57 David Bowie The Next Day
Maybe Angels 4:55 Sheryl Crow Sheryl Crow
Revenge 2:43 Whiskeytown Faithless Street
Blue Flower 3:36 Mazzy Star She Hangs Brightly
Buzz & Grind 3:06 Gob Iron Death Songs for the Living
2000 Blues 4:45 ZZ Top Recycler
Dirty World 3:30 Traveling Wilburys Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1
Black Country Woman 4:33 Led Zeppelin Physical Graffiti
18 Songs/1.2 Hours

My Feet Are My Only Carriage

We’re headed to the Florida beaches for Spring Break, and we better not go without a little Bob Marley. I was out of college, working in Dallas when a guy that worked for me turned me on to Marley and sushi. Reggae had always been an afterthought in my musical universe, something about how it was part of the sound of The Police. But Bob Marley is not just reggae, it IS reggae. I have other rasta artists on my playlists now (Jimmy Cliff, Peter Tosh, etc.) but limited selections. Bob Marley, I have it all. His music stands as a voice above any of his compatriots, and I’ve collected a few for this list. If you want to know what reggae is, get Natty Dread. If you want to start with just one song, listen to No Woman, No Cry.

I can’t remember what that guy’s name was in Dallas or the last time I ate sushi, but he gave me Bob Marley, man.

Song Time Artist Album
Lively Up Yourself 2:52 Bob Marley African Herbsman
Stir It Up 5:34 Bob Marley & The Wailers Catch A Fire
Get Up, Stand Up 3:18 The Wailers Burnin’
No Woman, No Cry 3:46 Bob Marley & The Wailers Natty Dread
Them Belly Full 3:13 Bob Marley & The Wailers Natty Dread
Rebel Music 6:47 Bob Marley & The Wailers Natty Dread
So Jah Seh 4:28 Bob Marley & The Wailers Natty Dread
Natty Dread 3:36 Bob Marley & The Wailers Natty Dread
Bend Down Low 3:22 Bob Marley & The Wailers Natty Dread
Talkin’ Blue 4:07 Bob Marley & The Wailers Natty Dread
Revolution 4:21 Bob Marley & The Wailers Natty Dread
So Much Things To Say 3:08 Bob Marley & The Wailers Exodus
Jamming 3:31 Bob Marley & The Wailers Exodus
Waiting in Vain 4:16 Bob Marley & The Wailers Exodus
Turn Your Lights Down Low 3:39 Bob Marley & The Wailers Exodus
Three Little Birds 3:00 Bob Marley & The Wailers Exodus
One Love / People Get Ready 2:51 Bob Marley & The Wailers Exodus
Time Will Tell 3:30 Bob Marley Kaya
Could You Be Loved 3:57 Bob Marley & The Wailers Uprising
Redemption Song 3:47 Bob Marley & The Wailers Uprising
20 Songs/1.2 Hours

My Playlist 30212

This list is inspired by the soundtrack for Seven Psychopaths, a movie I wouldn’t recommend. But songs I had to hear again. Three of these tracks are from the soundtrack, the rest take their cue from the atmosphere created by those songs.

Song Time Artist Album
Stranded 4:24 The Walkmen Lisbon
Underneath the Bunker 1:28 R.E.M. Life’s Rich Pageant
The Flowers of Guatemala 3:57 R.E.M. Life’s Rich Pageant
Help help 3;35 Pearl Jam Riot Act
Morning Star 4:30 Rick Wakeman & Jon Anderson The Living Tree
Police Station 5:36 Red Hot Chili Peppers I’m With You
In the Way 3:36 Tift Merritt Traveling Alone
Little Things 4:51 Los Lobos The Town and the City
Currents 6:03 Marc Ford Weary & Wired
Wiser Time 9:34 The Black Crowes Croweology
Face in the Crowd 4:25 Joseph Arthur The Graduation Ceremony
Still Cold 4:48 Mazzy Star Among My Swan
Learn to Love 4:21 NEEDTOBREATHE The Reckoning
Love is Here 4:03 Tenth Avenue North Over and Underneath
Angelsea 4:30 Cat Stevens Catch Bull at Four
Different Drum 2:38 The Stone Poneys Evergreen Vol. 2
Dirty Dishes 3:19 Deer Tick War Elephant
17 Songs/1.2 Hours


Russell Part Deaux

Seems my man, Russell, didn’t cotton to the whole “seems like he’s softened a bit” thing. So, he came up with a new list. Here’s what he says:

Softened up a bit, eh? Perhaps (LOL).
I thought far too much about this question while at work today and I came up with a better list, which the more I think about it i’m sure it would evolve continuously…

A few thoughts: the idea being that these are the only ten records that I’d ever listen to the rest of my living days on earth, I’m taking into consideration variety and themes…and that after years of listening to the same records which ones am i less likely to get tired of.

Anyway here’s my new list:

Album Artist
Quadrophenia The Who
Physical Graffiti Led Zeppelin
Regatta de Blanc The Police
Legend Bob Marley
All That You Can’t Leave Behind U2
Out of Time R.E.M.
Back on Top Van Morrison
CSN Crosby, Stills & Nash
Permanent Waves Rush
New Blood Peter Gabriel

Russell’s List 21002

I’ve known this guy since high school. We got in a lot of trouble together. Have to say, I was surprised at a couple of his selections. Seems like he’s softened a bit. What do you think? (Can’t say too much, though. I have all these records he’s listed.)

Here’s my box of records I want on an island:

Album Artist
Legend Bob Marley
Dark Side of the Moon Pink Floyd
Rumours Fleetwood Mac
All You Can’t Leave Behind U2
Love Deluxe Sade
Quadrophenia The Who
Physical Graffiti Led Zepelin
Diva Annie Lennox
Clockwork Angels Rush
Symphony #6 Ludwig van Beethoven

Angels with dirty wings

A couple of days ago Sara Hickman’s mom reached out to me on Facebook. We were neighbors when we were kids in Houston. Sara has recorded like 20 albums since the 1990s (I checked out her website www.sarahickman.com). I still just remember her as a kid across the street we played with sometimes. But it got me to thinking about who my favorite female vocalists are. Sara didn’t make this list, but she might once I have a chance to listen to more of her music. Here is who did make the list – I’ve got my top ten, and then half a dozen or more alternates.

Kim Richey
Lucinda Williams
Margo Timmins (Cowboy Junkies)
Christine McVie (Fleetwood Mac)
Allison Moorer
Chrissie Hynde (The Pretenders)
Emmylou Harris
Macy Gray
Patty Griffin
Susan Tedeschi

Sheryl Crow
Kate Pearson (The B-52’s)
Carole King
Norah Jones
Tift Merritt
Natalie Merchant
Vickie Thorn (The Waifs)
Maria McKee (Lone Justice)
Alison Krauss

Second Ten

These are my second ten – the ones that didn’t make my top ten Desert Island Records. Now, if this is the only box of music that washes up on shore, I’ll still be happy. Well, I don’t know. I’ll still be stranded on a desert island with ten records and no way to play them. But at least I’ll have them.

Album Artist
Us Peter Gabriel
Communique Dire Straits
Full Moon Fever Tom Petty
The Southern Harmony & Musical Companion The Black Crowes
No Code Pearl Jam
Bringing Down the Horse The Wallflowers
Miles from Our Home Cowboy Junkies
Glimmer Kim Richey
Natty Dread Bob Marley
Mr. Happy Go Lucky John Mellencamp