Monday, July 30, 2007

Top 5 Songs Containing the Word "Sun" in the Title

I figure, pop songs with a female singer, political pundits..."sun" songs is the next logical step, right? Anyway, this was an idea I thought of on the drive to Virginia, but I didn't have my iTunes handy when I got there. In the end there wasn't as much to choose from as I had hoped, so I resorted to lyrics websites.

Unnecessarily strict rule: it has to be "sun"--not sunshine, sunday, sunny, etc. Without further ado...

Ryan's Top 5

1. "Who Loves the Sun" - Velvet Underground - I really think this is one of the best pop songs of all-time. And, frankly, it was the impetus for this top 5.

2. "Here Comes the Sun" - The Beatles - The fact that this used to be my favorite song illustrates how much I've come to love song #1. That being said, this is definitely one of my favorite songs, still, so it's a close second on this list. This was George Harrison's best.

3. "House of the Rising Sun" - The Animals - I'd be remiss not to include this track. I'll admit it's not one of my all-time favorites, but it is damn good, and I wouldn't switch away from it on the radio. I'm also a sucker for the British Invasion.

4. "Blister in the Sun" - Violent Femmes - This narrowly defeats "Black Hole Sun" for the 4-spot.

5. "Black Hole Sun" - Soundgarden - I really could never get into Soundgarden past this song. This song, however, is great.

Honorable mentions: The Beatles - Sun King, Jimi Hendrix - Third Stone from the Sun, The Polyphonic Spree - It's the Sun, The Beatles - I'll Follow the Sun.

OK people, blow me away, show me the fantastic songs I'm forgetting.

Dan's Top 5:

1. Pink Floyd - Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun - One of Pink Floyd's first songs that was truly "out there." In my opinion, it paved the way for stuff like "Echoes," which would come right before the released Dark Side of the Moon. Still a good listen, and one of my favorites.

2. The Beatles - Here Comes The Sun - I have an automatic affinity for Harrison songs, and this was arguably his best song.

3. The Animals - House of the Rising Sun - A classic, it's got an instantly recognizable chord progression and I don't know of anyone who doesn't like it. Catchy, yet haunting. You'd probably get a very good response if your band decided to do a live cover of this one.

4. Violent Femmes - Blister in the Sun - Listen to this in the morning and I challenge you to keep it out of your head the rest of the day. It was one of those songs I had heard before countless times but never figured out what it was until I stumbled across the album. Most Beatles hits have the same story.

5. Elton John - Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me - OK, honestly not the best I Could have come up with, since it's one of Elton John's weaker hits. I mean, the verse is forgettable, so the only notable part of the song is the chorus. Still, I haven't expressed my appreciation for Elton John much, so here's his first shout-out.

Tim's Top 5:
1. Here Comes the Sun - The Beatles - There simply is no comparison here, it's the second best individual song on the best album of all time (the first greatest is a song most people barely recall, but I think Polythene Pam is amazing). Fact. It's a song that's totally cool-free, listening to it will get you no street cred whatsoever, but it's still a great song and one of the best expressions of optimism in music.

2. Holidays in the Sun - The Sex Pistols - Then again, as good as Abbey Road is, Never Mind the Bollocks isn't exactly a Matchbox 20 album either. This song was all it took to hook me on the idea that I could indeed become a punk music fan, no matter how many people wearing Operation Ivy patches on their clothes I hated. The whole band is in rare form for this, the guitar and bass are flawless, the drumming is exciting, and Johnny Rotten is sufficiently unintelligible to fit the frantic pace and relatively thin lyrics that never really get much beyond the fact that the Berlin Wall is somehow involved.

3. Turn Up the Sun - Oasis - This list is pretty poor, I can tell you flat out. This song is really good, but the main reason it's the most listened to "sun" song on ITunes is that it's the first track on Don't Believe The Truth, falling within three tracks of "Love Like A Bomb". But it's a good opener for the album,

4. The Sun - Maroon 5 - That's right, I'm a defender. Had "This Love" and "She Will Be Loved" never made it onto the radio, people could still speak with praise about this album as being an inspiring turn towards old-school pseudo-funk Stevie Wonder. Instead, now every 14 year old girl has grown out of Maroon 5, leaving aesthetes like myself the job of defending our taste in blogs that no one besides the four of us will ever read. It's a tough life. The stairstep vocals where Adam Levine is almost just putting scales to lyrics are a great hook for me, and this song was spared the radio play that ruined so much of this album for me.

5. Walk in the Sun - Bruce Hornsby - Have I somehow managed to conceal that I'm a total pussy thus far? Because I think that if Maroon 5 had not yet done so, this blows my cover entirely. I really enjoy Bruce Hornsby, and can't even pretend it's his association with The Grateful Dead that does it for me. I will point out that this list is pretty skimpy on sufficient songs and that's certainly the only reason that this makes the list, since it's not among my favorites -- it's no "Set Me In Motion", let alone "The Valley Road", but the fact is that I do like it. I'm so adult contemporary somedays that I want to kick my own ass. If only John Tesh had some intelligence for my life...

Honorable mention: Walking in the Sun - Travis -- seriously, this is all I can muster; Blame It on the Sun - Stevie Wonder. I have another dozen "sun" songs on my Ipod, but none of them warrant mention. Except in retrospect, the songs on both Dan and Ryan's lists really ought to be slotted into #5's spot...but since I went through the emotional trauma of admitting that I like Bruce Hornsby, I'll just leave it at that and pretend I've never heard of The Violent Femmes or Eric Burdon, because I was too busy buying albums from Windham Hill artists.

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