Comments: If music be the food of blogs

Hoaw about the Stones?

Posted by Alex G at July 18, 2004 05:40 PM

I don't know...it feels to me like their prime years both start too early and end too late. Certainly by 1989 they'd lost it, but given that they were still credible as late as 1981, they just didn't quite work for me. But one could make an argument for them.

Posted by Francis at July 18, 2004 07:45 PM

Could it be Billy Joel?

I mean, I don't think a whole lot of him anyway, but I understand why someone could have liked him in '72 when "Cold Spring Harbor" was out, but as you progress through the years you get the forgettable years, with stuff like "Turnstiles" ('75) and "52nd Street" ('78). These were followed my the bland years, featuring such treasures as 1980's "Glass Houses" and 1982's "The Nylon Curtain".

While, in theory a line could be drawn at the "Greatest Hits, Volumes 1 and 2" between the tripe and the really offensive stuff, I dare say that "The Bridge" ('86) would fall to the left of that line, whereas "Storm Front" ('89) was just out and out junk.

And yes, knowing the words to "We Didn't Start the Fire" got me out of taking an especially hard history test in the 6th grade. But no, that doesn't make it okay.

Posted by brian dermody at July 19, 2004 12:33 AM

I also considered Billy Joel. Part of the reason I didn't go with Billy is because I'm not sure there was ever any indie cred involved in being a Billy Joel fan, whereas Tull at least had some of that countercultural hippie-type thing going on for a while. And while one can argue that the albums you cite are forgettable (god knows there has hardly ever been a songwriter whose non-singles so frequently fit the definition of "filler" so well), that time period still produced tons of hit songs for him, and honestly, those songs are actually pretty good, if one can judge them simply on the merits of being decent radio fodder and not on the fact that they've been overplayed an ungodly number of times. So do those years represent a long, slow slide in quality? I'd say no.

(As for "Storm Front" being total crap, you'll get no argument from me.)

Posted by Francis at July 19, 2004 01:06 AM

What did I ever do to you people that made you so disappointed in me? I only wanted to give you beauty.

Posted by Billy Joel at July 19, 2004 03:52 PM

If it makes you feel better, Billy, I still unreservedly love "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant", "Stiletto", and "Prelude/Angry Young Man" (among others, but those are my favorites). But come on, "The Downeaster Alexa"? No.

Posted by Francis at July 19, 2004 03:58 PM

But "The Downeaster Alexa" is my most heartfelt song about the shipping industry! All my other songs about the shipping industry are much less heartfelt.

I bet you guys weren't this rough on Gordon Lightfoot.

Posted by Billy Joel at July 19, 2004 06:45 PM

Songs about seafaring begin and end with Looking Glass' "Brandy." The guy's life, love, and his lady was the sea.

Posted by Alex G at July 20, 2004 01:23 PM