Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Toby Creswell: Top 1001 Songs

First posted 3/18/2021.

Toby Creswell:

1001 Songs: The Great Songs of All Time

Toby Creswell is an Australian music journalist who was the editor of the Australian edition of Rolling Stone (1985-1992) and the founding editor of Juice. In 2005, he published the book 1001 Songs: The Great Songs of All Time. While the years covered by the book are impressive (1924-2004), the list suffers from the usual problem of focusing primarily on music from the latter half of the 20th century. There are only 26 songs from the pre-rock era (before 1954).

More maddening, however, is the construction of the book. There isn’t any. The songs are not in any kind of order – ranked, listed chronologically, or alphabetically by song title or act name. Creswell tries to justify the lack of any ranking by saying in the introduction: “There is no greatest song of all time…There is no #1. There is no canon. Some of the songs are better than others.”

Let me stop right there. In his own words, he says “some of the songs are better than others,” which supports the idea that there is, in fact, a greatest song of all time. It’s just that Creswell is either 1) too lazy to rank the songs, or 2) too afraid of the backlash that inevitably comes from those who disagree with the rankings. With that said, Dave’s Music Database believes strongly that some songs are better than others and that there is a greatest song of all time. Therefore, this list ranks the top songs featured in Creswell’s book by their overall Dave’s Music Database status.

Click here to see other lists from publications and/or organizations.

DMDB Top 1%:

1. The Beatles “Hey Jude” (1968)
2. The Rolling Stones “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” (1965)
3. Bill Haley & the Comets “We’re Gonna Rock Around the Clock” (1954)
4. The Police “Every Breath You Take” (1983)
5. Michael Jackson “Billie Jean” (1982)
6. Queen “Bohemian Rhapsody” (1975)
7. Nirvana “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (1991)
8. John Lennon “Imagine” (1971)
9. The Beatles “I Want to Hold Your Hand” (1963)
10. Simon & Garfunkel “Bridge Over Troubled Water” (1970)

11. Aretha Franklin “Respect” (1967)
12. Marvin Gaye “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” (1968)
13. The Beach Boys “Good Vibrations” (1966)
14. Eagles “Hotel California” (1976)
15. Bee Gees “Stayin’ Alive” (1977)
16. Bob Dylan “Like a Rolling Stone” (1965)
17. Judy Garland “Over the Rainbow” (1939)
18. Otis Redding “(Sittin’ on) The Dock of the Bay” (1968)
19. Bobby Darin “Mack the Knife” (1956)
20. Elvis Presley “Heartbreak Hotel” (1956)

21. Sinéad O’Connor “Nothing Compares 2 U” (1990)
22. OutKast “Hey Ya!” (2003)
23. Elvis Presley “Don’t Be Cruel” (1956)
24. Led Zeppelin “Stairway to Heaven” (1971)
25. Elvis Presley “Hound Dog” (1956)
26. The Animals “The House of the Rising Sun” (1964)
27. Guns N’ Roses “Sweet Child O’ Mine” (1988)
28. Derek & the Dominos “Layla” (1971)
29. Ben E. King “Stand by Me” (1961)
30. Roy Orbison “(Oh) Pretty Woman” (1964)

31. The Righteous Brothers “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’” (1965)
32. Elvis Presley “Jailhouse Rock” (1957)
33. Abba “Dancing Queen” (1976)
34. Joan Jett & the Blackhearts “I Love Rock and Roll” (1981)
35. Chuck Berry “Johnny B. Goode” (1958)
36. Prince “When Doves Cry” (1984)
37. Procol Harum “A Whiter Shade of Pale” (1967)
38. R.E.M. “Losing My Religion” (1991)
39. Marvin Gaye “What’s Going On” (1971)
40. The Doors “Light My Fire” (1967)

41. The Kingsmen “Louie Louie” (1963)
42. Beyoncé with Jay-Z “Crazy in Love” (2003)
43. Rod Stewart “Maggie May” (1971)
44. The Who “My Generation” (1966)
45. Elton John “Your Song” (1970)
46. Elvis Presley “Suspicious Minds” (1969)
47. The Ronettes “Be My Baby” (1963)
48. Elvis Presley “All Shook Up“ (1957)
49. Ray Charles “What’d I Say” (1959)
50. The Kinks “You Really Got Me” (1964)

51. The Monkees “I’m a Believer” (1966)
52. The Beatles “She Loves You” (1963)
53. U2 “With Or Without You” (1987)
54. The Human League “Don’t You Want Me?” (1981)
55. Chic “Le Freak” (1978)
56. Britney Spears “Baby One More Time” (1998)
57. Madonna “Like a Prayer” (1989)
58. The Beach Boys “God Only Knows” (1966)
59. Simon and Garfunkel “The Sounds of Silence” (1965)
60. Al Green “Let’s Stay Together” (1971)

61. Coolio with L.V. “Gangsta’s Paradise” (1995)
62. Oasis “Wonderwall” (1995)
63. U2 “One” (1992)
64. Roberta Flack “Killing Me Softly with His Song” (1973)
65. Blondie “Heart of Glass” (1978)
66. Joy Division “Love Will Tear Us Apart” (1980)
67. The Beatles “Strawberry Fields Forever” (1967)
68. The Beatles “A Day in the Life” (1967)
69. Del Shannon “Runaway” (1961)
70. Elvis Presley “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” (1960)

71. The Jackson 5 “I Want You Back” (1969)
72. Simon & Garfunkel “Mrs. Robinson” (1968)
73. Soft Cell “Tainted Love” (1981)
74. The Verve “Bitter Sweet Symphony” (1997)
75. The Byrds “Mr. Tambourine Man” (1968)
76. Jerry Lee Lewis “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” (1957)
77. Steppenwolf “Born to Be Wild” (1968)
78. Carl Perkins “Blue Suede Shoes” (1956)
79. Roberta Flack “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” (1969)
80. Patsy Cline “Crazy” (1961)

81. Village People “Y.M.C.A.” (1978)
82. The Mamas & the Papas “California Dreamin’” (1966)
83. Van Halen “Jump” (1984)
84. Queen “Another One Bites the Dust” (1980)
85. The Clash “London Calling” (1979)
86. Little Richard “Tutti Frutti” (1955)
87. Buffalo Springfield “For What It’s Worth” (1967)
88. Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers “Why Do Fools Fall in Love?” (1956)
89. The Jimi Hendrix Experience “Purple Haze” (1967)
90. Madonna “Like a Virgin” (1984)

91. Bob Marley & the Wailers “No Woman, No Cry” (1974)
92. Radiohead “Creep” (1993)
93. Billie Holiday “Strange Fruit” (1939)
94. David Bowie “Space Oddity” (1969)
95. The Miracles “The Tracks of My Tears” (1965)
96. The Knack “My Sharona” (1979)
97. Led Zeppelin “Whole Lotta Love” (1969)
98. Eurythmics “Sweet Dreams Are Made of This” (1983)
99. Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five “The Message” (1982)
100. The Beatles with Billy Preston “Get Back” (1969)

101. AC/DC “You Shook Me All Night Long” (1980)
102. Marvin Gaye “Let’s Get It On” (1973)
103. The Shirelles “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” (1960)
104. Ritchie Valens “La Bamba” (1958)
105. The Rolling Stones “Sympathy for the Devil” (1968)
106. Paul Whiteman with George Gershwin “Rhapsody in Blue” (1924)
107. Henry Mancini with Audrey Hepburn “Moon River” (1961)
108. Buddy Holly & the Crickets “Peggy Sue” (1957)
109. Dire Straits “Sultans of Swing” (1978)
110. Madonna “Music” (2000)

111. New Order “Blue Monday” (1983)
112. Sex Pistols “Anarchy in the U.K.” (1976)
113. TLC “Waterfalls” (1995)
114. The Beatles “Can’t Buy Me Love” (1964)
115. Johnny Cash “I Walk the Line” (1956)
116. The Supremes “Stop! In the Name of Love” (1965)
117. Alanis Morissette “You Oughta Know” (1995)
118. Red Hot Chili Peppers “Under the Bridge” (1992)
119. The Who “Won’t Get Fooled Again” (1971)
120. Fleetwood Mac “Go Your Own Way” (1977)

121. Frankie Goes to Hollywood “Relax” (1983)
122. Eminem with Dido “Stan” (2000)
123. Duke Ellington “Take the ‘A’ Train” (1941)
124. Isaac Hayes “Theme from Shaft” (1971)
125. Beck “Loser” (1993)
126. Little Eva Little Eva “The Loco-Motion” (1962)
127. David Bowie “Heroes” (1977)
128. Lou Reed “Walk on the Wild Side” (1972)
129. Harry James Orchestra with Frank Sinatra “All or Nothing at All” (1939)
130. Chuck Berry “Maybellene” (1955)

131. The White Stripes “Seven Nation Army” (2003)
132. Jefferson Airplane “White Rabbit” (1967)
133. Cyndi Lauper “Time After Time” (1984)
134. Tears for Fears “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” (1985)
135. The Everly Brothers “Bye Bye Love” (1957)
136. Woody Guthrie “This Land Is Your Land” (1944)
137. Dire Straits “Money for Nothing” (1985)
138. James Brown “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag” (1965)
139. Ike & Tina Turner “River Deep, Mountain High” (1966)
140. Coldplay “Clocks” (2002)

141. Gladys Knight & the Pips “Midnight Train to Georgia” (1973)
142. The Beatles “in My Life” (1965)
143. Chic “Good Times” (1979)
144. Frank Sinatra “My Way” (1969)
145. Sheryl Crow “All I Wanna Do” (1993)
146. Peter Gabriel “Sledgehammer” (1986)
147. Sly & The Family Stone “Everyday People” (1968)
148. R.E.M. “Everybody Hurts” (1992)
149. Pink Floyd “Comfortably Numb” (1979)
150. Bruce Springsteen “Born in the U.S.A.” (1984)

151. Wilson Picket “In the Midnight Hour” (1965)
152. The Kinks “Lola” (1970)
153. The Rolling Stones “Angie” (1973)
154. The Kinks “Waterloo Sunset” (1967)
155. Deep Purple “Smoke on the Water” (1973)
156. Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott “Get Ur Freak On” (2001)
157. Oasis “Live Forever” (1994)
158. Metallica “Enter Sandman” (1991)
159. The Who “Baba O’Riley” (1971)
160. Free “All Right Now” (1970)

161. Talking Heads “Once in a Lifetime” (1981)
162. Hank Williams “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953)
163. Pretenders “Brass in Pocket” (1979)
164. U2 “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984)
165. Culture Club “Karma Chameleon” (1983)
166. OutKast “Ms. Jackson” (2000)
167. Gene Vincent & His Blue Caps “Be-Bop-A-Lula” (1956)
168. 10cc “I’m Not in Love” (1975)
169. Dion “Runaround Sue” (1961)
170. David Bowie “Changes” (1972)

171. Roy Orbison “Only the Lonely” (1960)
172. Madonna “Into the Groove” (1985)
173. Bo Diddley “Bo Diddley” (1955)
174. The Rolling Stones “Gimme Shelter” (1969)
175. Marty Robbins “El Paso” (1959)
176. Louis Armstrong “West End Blues” (1928)
177. Pulp “Common People” (1995)
178. Black Eyed Peas with Justin Timberlake “Where Is the Love?” (2003)
179. The Rolling Stones “Start Me Up” (1981)
180. Cream “Sunshine of Your Love” (1967)

181. Coldplay “Yellow” (2000)
182. Elton John “Bennie and the Jets” (1973)
183. The Beatles “I Feel Fine” (1964)
184. Count Basie “One O’Clock Jump” (1937)
185. The Troggs “Wild Thing” (1966)
186. The Beatles “Come Together” (1969)
187. The Band “The Weight” (1968)
188. Jackie Wilson “Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher and Higher” (1967)
189. Dave Brubeck Quartet “Take Five” (1959)
190. Roger Miller “King of the Road” (1965)

191. INXS “Need You Tonight” (1987)
192. Creedence Clearwater Revival “Fortunate Son” (1969)
193. Aretha Franklin “You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman” (1967)
194. Crowded House “Don’t Dream It’s Over” (1987)
195. Pet Shop Boys “West End Girls” (1985)
196. Bob Dylan “The Times They Are A-Changin’” (1964)
197. The Impressions “People Get Ready” (1965)
198. The Beatles “Ticket to Ride” (1965)
199. Bruce Springsteen “Thunder Road” (1975) 200. Madonna “Ray of Light” (1998)

201. Bob Dylan “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975)
202. Bobbie Gentry “Ode to Billie Joe” (1967)

Resources/Related Links:

Saturday, November 26, 2005

50 years ago: Little Richard charted with “Tutti Frutti” 50 years ago today

Last updated 3/6/2021.

Tutti Frutti

Little Richard

Writer(s): Little Richard, Dorothy LaBostrie (see lyrics here)

Released: October 1955

First Charted: November 26, 1955

Peak: 17 US, 10 CB, 2 RB, 29 UK (Click for codes to singles charts.)

Sales (in millions): -- US, -- UK, -- world (includes US + UK)

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 31.53 video, -- streaming

Awards: (Click on award for more details).

About the Song:

The 22-year-old Richard Penniman, aka “Little Richard,” was looking for a breakthrough in 1955 when he went into a New Orleans recording studio to lay down his first tracks for Specialty Records. He “started extemporizing verses of ‘Tutti Frutti,’ a risque feature of his club sets.” NRR As he said, “I’d been singing ‘Tutti-Frutti’ for years, but it never struck me as a song you’d record.” RS500

Lyrics like “Tutti frutti, loose booty/ If it don’t fit, don’t force it/ You can grease it, make it easy” were deemed too raunchy, “so Dorothy La Bostrie was called in to sanitize them; she gave Richard a gal named Sue (“She knows just what to do”) and another named Daisy (“She almost drive me crazy”). TM The results made the song “barely eligible for radio airplay.” MA

“Kids scrambled to decipher the meaning of the sounds emitted by the pompadoured piano dervish…but really, the words weren’t nearly as important as the remorselessly frenetic beat, the propulsive piano work and the primal, screaming vocal.” TM Jimi Hendrix, who worked as a sideman for Richard in 1964, said, “I want to do with my guitar what Little Richard does with his voice.” TM

Little Richard “fused a unique falsetto and gospel scream that simultaneously oozed sexuality and spirituality. His performances and wardrobe were wild and outlandish. His androgynous stage persona would be reflected by Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, and Prince. FR The man who’d grown up in the South “black, gay, and outrageous…was so far out he was in.” SA His first chart single became a signature in the early days of rock and roll, cementing him as one of the genre’s forefathers.

Resources and Related Links:

  • DMDB Encyclopedia entry for Little Richard
  • FR Paul Friedlander (1996). Rock and Roll: A Social History. Boulder, Colorado; Westview Press, Inc. Pages 38-9.
  • MA Dave Marsh (1989). The Heart of Rock and Soul: The 1001 Greatest Singles Ever Made. New York, NY; New American Library. Pages 11.
  • NRR National Recording Registry
  • RS500 (4/7/2011). “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time
  • SA David Sadowski (1999). Haven’t Named It Yet: A Rock ‘N’ Roll Prehistory, 1926-55.
  • TM Time magazine (10/24/2011). “All Time 100 Songs

Friday, November 4, 2005

Aha released Analogue



Released: November 4, 2005

Peak: -- US, 24 UK, -- CN, -- AU

Sales (in millions): -- US, 0.06 UK, 0.06 world (includes US and UK)

Genre: synth pop


Song Title (date of single release, chart peaks) Click for codes to singles charts.

  1. Celice (10/7/05, --)
  2. Don’t Do Me Any Favours
  3. Cosy Prisons (4/17/06, 39 UK)
  4. Analogue (All I Want) (1/23/06, 10 UK)
  5. Birthright (10/28/05, --)
  6. Holy Ground
  7. Over the Treetops
  8. Halfway Through the Tour
  9. A Fine Blue Line
  10. Keeper of the Flame
  11. Make It Soon
  12. White Dwarf
  13. The Summers of Our Youth

Total Running Time: 54:43

The Players:

  • Morten Harket (vocals, guitar)
  • Magne Furuholmen (keyboards, guitar, bass)
  • Pål Waaktaar-Savoy (guitars, drums, percussion)


3.033 out of 5.00 (average of 3 ratings)

Quotable: “A return to form.” – Sharon Mawer, All Music Guide

Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About the Album:

Thanks to the international success of “Take on Me” in 1985, a-ha became “one of the most popular Norwegian bands of all time.” AZ “Lead singer Morten Harket's incredible falsetto has wowed audiences for over two decades, and this new album shows real progression without straying too far from the band's trademark sound.” AZ

While the U.S. market largely forgot about a-ha after their debut album, they’ve never really been away so “Analogue was hardly a comeback but a continuation of their 20-plus years of hitmaking. If anything, it was a return to form after the disappointing Lifelines album.” AMG

The trio’s eighth studio endeavor kicks off with Celice, which features Harket’s “trademark falsetto vocals over a beat driven song.” AMG The song also served as the first single, released only in Europe. It was the band’s ninth, and, to-date, final #1 song in Norway.

The title cut, Analogue (All I Want) was also released as a single and became the band’s first top-ten hit in the UK since 1988’s “Stay on These Roads” AMG and the band’s eighteenth top-ten hit in Norway.

“Pål Waaktaar's fuzzy guitar dominates Make It Soon but Analogue is mainly a very laid-back album; only a few of its 13 tracks are up-tempo in the style of their classic era ‘Take on Me,’ and most of the tracks are piano led, melancholy ballads including Cozy Prisons, Birthright, A Fine Blue Line, and The Summers of Your Youth.” AMG

Graham Nash guests with backing vocals on “Cozy Prisons” and Over the Teardrops. “The harmonies on the latter song sound almost like one of CSN & Y’s own.” AMG

Halfway Through the Tour is one of the album’s more unusual songs. It is “a synth-beat number over seven minutes long. It’s a strange song which appears to finish at the standard three-minute mark but then continues for a further four minutes as a flute instrumental with echoes of ‘Nights in White Satin.’” AMG

Notes: An iTunes store version of the album included two remixes of “Celice.”

Resources and Related Links:

Other Related DMDB Pages:

First posted 9/9/2020; updated 8/9/2021.