My 50th Favorite Song of All-Time

First, let’s recap what has already gone before.  To see the individual entries of each song, click here.

100.  “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” by Deep Blue Something
99.  “Jack & Diane” by John Mellencamp
98.  “Hotel California” by The Eagles
97.  “American Pie” by Don McLean
96.  “Don’t Stop Till You Get Enough” by Michael Jackson
95.  “Nuthin’ but a G Thang” by Dr. Dre
94.  “Bushwick Blues” by Delta Spirit
93.  “For the Workforce, Drowning” by Thursday
92.  “Fish Heads” by Barnes and Barnes
91.  “Shimmer” by Fuel
90.  “Rubber Biscuit” by the Blues Brothers
89.  “House of the Rising Sun” by The Animals
88.  “Asleep at the Wheel” by Working For a Nuclear-Free City
87.  “There’s an Arc” by Hey Rosetta!
86.  “Steam Engine” by My Morning Jacket
85.  “Scenario” by A Tribe Called Quest
84.  “White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane
83.  “Fits” by Stone Gossard
82.  “Spring Flight to the Land of Fire” by The Cape May
81. “The District Sleeps Alone Tonight” by The Postal Service
80.  “Sober” by Tool
79.  “Dream is Collapsing” by Hans Zimmer
78.  “Why Don’t We Do it in the Road?” by The Beatles
77.  “In This Light and on This Evening” by Editors
76.  “Lemonworld” by The National
75.  “Twin Peaks Theme” by Angelo Badalamente
74.  “A Comet Appears” by The Sins
73.  “The Mariner’s Revenge Song” by The Decemberists
72.  “Pepper” by Butthole Surfers
71.  “Life Wasted” by Pearl Jam
70.  “Jetstream” by Doves
69.  “Trieste” by Gifts From Enola
68.  “Oh My God” by Kaiser Chiefs
67.  “Last Exit” by Pearl Jam
66.  “Innocence” by The Airborne Toxic Event
65.  “There, There” by Radiohead
64.  “Ants Marching” by Dave Matthews Band
63.  “Born to Run” by Bruce Springsteen
62.  “The Best of What’s Around” by Dave Matthews Band
61.  “Old Man” by Neil Young
60.  “Cumbersome” by Seven Mary Three
59.  “Sledgehammer” by Peter Gabriel
58.  “Machine Head” by Bush
57.  “Peaches” by Presidents of the United States of America
56.  “Gimme Shelter” by The Rolling Stones
55.  “Fell on Black Days” by Soundgarden
54.  “The New Year” by Death Cab for Cutie
53.  “Call Me Al” by Paul Simon
52.  “Real Muthaphuckin’ Gs” by Eazy E
51.  “Evening Kitchen” by Band of Horses

And my 50th favorite song of all-time is:

“Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth with Money in My Hand” by Primitive Radio Gods

I distinctly remember the first time I heard Primitive Radio Gods’ “Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth with Money in My Hand”.  I was on vacation with my family in Ocean City, Maryland (as well as my friend Brock, who still doesn’t have a Facebook page!)  I was somehow alone in the hotel room, and MTV was playing.  MTV was still something of a luxury in those days; if luxury is not the right word, perhaps treat would do.  I remember hearing the opening chords and being interested, and then seeing the strange band name and stranger song name on the bottom of the screen.  At the time, all I was was intrigued.  It wasn’t my type of music.

A year or two later, my tastes had changed, and I came across the Primitive Radio Gods CD in a music store.  I bought it on a hunch, like we used to do in those days.  Turns out, the whole CD was really good, and really hit the wheelhouse of Young Seth’s developing musical tastes.  Over the years, the album (which is entitled Rocket) has consistently been one of the CDs I re-purchase when I am re-building my CD collection every few years; I’ve probably bought it 6 or 7 times.  And “Broken Phone Booth” is probably the song I have put on mix discs more times than any other song, not just because it is totally awesome, but because it’s a great tension-break amidst a string of higher-tempo or higher-octane songs.

The song has really helped form both what I look for in music, but also in literature.  I loved the lyrics’ mix of irreverent detail amidst serious, cosmic realities.  I’d have to say that in the intervening years, my tastes (and even my own writing abilities) have advanced beyond this song’s scope; parts of it are, in fact, rather sophomoric, but I’ll always be fond of the song for the memories and its sweet earnestness.

One Response to “My 50th Favorite Song of All-Time”

  1. Such a great song.

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