My dad broke his neck. 4th vertebrae. My divorce is almost 4 years old. I haven't spoken to my mother for another 4. Meg's been dead for 4 years. It's been 4 score and 4 ever since I gave a fuck about music, this blog, writing anything except my name on medical forms, and ....yeah. You get it.
What is it about four? Nothing but a gimmick for a blog post, that's what.
I did a Top 40 at 40 on the 40 days leading up to my 40th back in the daze.
It was a simpler time then (even though subconsciously entrenched in a survival plot for the rest of my life) and it surprisingly prefaced the end of my sweet sister.
I know now how foolish coasting through life without a back up for a backup plan can be.
I know what Michael Bolton sang of in his suberb hit "Fools Game".
I know now what Bon Scott meant when he said, "Hell Ain't A Bad Place to Be."
Hell would be like an unreachable paradise. A staycation I would relish to the fucking hilt. Mai Tais and a bucket of grenades in a basket next to me to lob at simpletons, the one percenters, the overly tan......
Ehh. Maybe thats the drugs( that are supposed to keep me baselined, yet fail on the front line) talking...
Half Empty headspace overdoing the negativity again. Strike that. Reverse it.
So be it.
No time like the present to put out a list of my top 44 at 44. Top 44 songs, that is. A song = Verse, chorus, verse, one voice hovering over your fucking thoughts and engraving your memories with pomp, circumstance, glissandro and god given guitar solo always on deck, painstakingly and purely put to analog tape, entwined in messianic melody and having nothing to do with a fucking dance move or a dub step or a fist pump.
On the brink of a half empty birthday, in the car today as I was singing Bicycle Race at the top of my lungs hoping my six year old would love Freddy Mercury even one percent as much as I did growing up, I decided to compare and then compile then and now.
Goosebumps and guffaws as I read all of that nonsense.
This list is not a love story.
Not like then. I was hugging and kissing those songs after a lifelong courtship.We were companions. Like an old married couple sitting alone, in silence in a comfortable room admiring each other.
This is a survival guide. Dodge the bombs every day with headphones on. Plant the seeds for truth when I catch my breath. This is my map for battle in 44 steps. A tactical plan for avoiding a plague of triggers...
#44) Unfinished Plan-Alain Johannes- solemn soliloquy for a lost love one.
#43) Astral Weeks-Van Morrison- just takes me places where clouds break and panoramas are dusty through dilapidated row homes.
#42) Thirteen-Big Star- youth's innocence in a perfect picture frame.Hung in your locker.
#41) Why Can't I Touch It-Buzzcocks- because it avoids me.
#40) Little One-Elliott Smith- deep in the hole of self medication, through the eyes of a melting butterfly.
#39) Lazy-Deep Purple- anything but, motherfucker.
#38) Bastard Samaurai- High On Fire- soundtrtack for the people who deserve a head removal.
#37) Out on the Weekend-Neil Young- longing personified.
#36) Albuquerque- Neil Young- a long and craggy road for a tired soul looking for solace and some fried eggs and country ham.
#35) Cafe- Tim Buckley- one of the most divine voices I've ever heard spooking me outside in.
#34) Borracho-Mark Lanegan -borracho means "drunk" en espanol.
#33) Can't Find My Way Home-Blind Faith- If I believed in bumper stickers...
#32) Lawyers Guns and Money-Warren Zevon- Yes, Yes, Yes.
#31) How To Disappear Completely-Radiohead- self/ help section-emphasis on neither.
#30) No Surprises-Radiohead- self/ help section, emphasis on everything.
#29) Lucky- Radiohead-ends the trilogy.
#28) Pure Imagination-Willie Wonka Soundtrack- A 100 percent pure cacao song of hope and wonder.
#27) Ain't Wastin' Time No More-Allman Bros.- regret and retrospect through years of intellectual neglect.
#26) Dreaming From the Waist- The Who- Pete and I talking over a couple warm brandys.
#25) A Song For the Dead -Queens of the Stone Age-If you're dead, wake up, regurgitate the poison that fell you and wholeheartedly annihilate the world.
#24) These Are My Dress Clothes-Bison BC- judge me and I judge thee. Radiant in the finest denim.
#23) Smashing Pumpkins-XYU- shooting metallic poison quills with every thought.
#22) Kyle Petty,Son of Richard(live version)- Soundgarden-remember what your daddy told you. Punch hard, fast and early.
#21) Play the Game-Queen- know the rules. Know better than those who live to break them.
#20) Pigs(3 different ones)- Pink Floyd- We are Animal Farm. Who are the farmers?
#19) Hooker With a Penis-Tool- What does your t-shirt really mean, asshole. We've all sold out.
#18) Mother Puncher-Mastodon- She is my favorite speed bag.
#17) Coney Island Baby-Lou Reed- I wanna play football for the coach.
#16) Thumb-Kyuss- I don't give two shits on how you feel.
#15) 30 Days in the Hole-Humble Pie- revelry gives temporary gains and no returns on your initial investment.
#14) Cassidy- Bob Weir- Roll the windows down and witness the beauty vicariously. Even if it isnt there.
#13) Junkhead-Alice in Chains- What have you got?
#12) Evil- Cactus- this jam wrecks posture and depletes function.
#11) 1-1- Brian Eno- I cannot take a domestic flight without it.
#10) Sabbath Bloody Sabbath-Black Sabbath- What do you have underneath all of that shit you carry? with?
#9) Into the Void-Black Sabbath- What are you gonna do with it?
#8) You're a Big Girl Now-Bob Dylan- love song for people who need help knowing what love is.
#7) Whole Lotta Rosie-AC/DC- precursor to bar room brawl: played on jukebox after "Friends in Low Places"
#6) Abbey Road-whole album- Beatles- it is the longest song I know.
#5) Search and Destroy or Dirt- The Stooges- A New York bulletproof mean street shuffle soundtrack. For the well- read ticking time bombs of the world.
#4) Friends/Since I've Been Loving You- Led Zep- Sad stretch of the highest blues wailed from the throne of the golden god.
#3) Regular John/Avon- Queens of the Stone Age- a passion play for obliterating everything disguised as a riff.
#2) Can't You Hear Me Knocking- Stones- Straight on dirtiest jam in history. Wipe yourself off. Go back for seconds.
#1) Slaves and Bulldozers-Soundgarden-mantra of mantras. Everything I said...Is what I mean.