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Friday, October 28, 2005

[General] RRRRocktober!!!

The following is the beginning of a short essay I wrote some years back in the early 2000's (hence I have changed a few of the bands mentioned to seem less dated).

I thought that it would be good to bung it in here as Rock-tober winds up. The list is my list compiled after extensive research of locals who seemed to be in the know (like the guys who run Slow Boat Records on Cuba St).

The Best Rock Songs of All Time:

(or ‘what would you pick?’)

an essay by Hadyn Green

My List


God Gave Rock and Roll To You






Paradise City

Guns ‘n’ Roses


Blitzkreig Bop

The Ramones


I Love Rock and Roll

Joan Jett and the Blackhearts


Voodoo Chile

Jimi Hendrix


Come Together

The Beatles


Immigrant Song

Led Zeppelin


Highway to Hell



We Will Rock You



In this essay I hope to explore fully the genre of rock, and, like all great explorers, rip it apart, find its basic components. In doing this I hope to find what makes a truly great rock song. Is it catchiness, is it long guitar riffs, is it the message of a song or its influence on society, or maybe the heart of rock and roll is the beat? [sic]

In any case I shall start at the beginnings of rock and work my way through pointing out interesting sights along the way, we will look at bands that influenced the world and bands that influenced other bands, and hopefully in the end you will be able to come up with your own list of the top ten rock songs of all time.

Oh and I will explain my choices. Naturally most of you have already decided that my list is wrong.

It should be pointed out that while there is no right answer, there are definitely WRONG answers and right answers that are just not right enough. Luckily anyone with half a rockin’ brain will be able to pick the WRONG answers from the bad right answers. Hmmm maybe a test?

Pick the WRONG choice from this list of right but very bad choices:

a. Numb – Linkin Park

b. This Love – Maroon 5

c. Smooth – Santana (feat Matchbox 20)

<>If you picked b. Maroon 5, you were right! Santana is allowed because he used to rock out and Linkin Park do in some fashion. Maroon 5, to quote Jack Black, are “wannabe sell-outs”.

What about zydeco-industrial-ska?

First we need a definition of rock. That shouldn’t be too hard (HAHAHA). For example should we include punk, ska, heavy metal, rock ‘n’ roll, industrial…? The list could go on forever. And then there is the question of how heavy? Or how reggae? Genres have fuzzy boundaries filled with hundreds of cross over bands and songs. Add into the mix personal taste (one mans heavy metal is another’s chamber music) and you end up with a Venn diagram whose overlapping areas are in a state of constant flux.

There was a time when rock and hip-hop wouldn’t sit together on the bus (pre- and post- Run DMC’s remake of Walk this Way), but now bands such as Limp Bizkit and their contemporaries are reshaping that boundary. So let’s nail it down.

First, let’s look at the instruments. I refuse to restrict rock to certain types of instruments or sounds, (after all what makes rock? Guitars? Drums?) But I do feel that a rock group should actually play real instruments. Instantly I have ruled hundreds of bands and songs and genres. Sorry.


That'll do, Happy Rocktober! Enjoy the trick or treating!


1 comment:

Tom said...

Given that the whole "real instruments" thing isn't really me (unless by "real" you mean like actual keyboards and stuff, rather than VST plugins), I'll have to add a variation: The top 10 non-rock songs that rock (in no particular order).

Acperience - Hardfloor
Poison - The Prodigy
King of Snake - Underworld
Setting Sun - Chemical Brothers
Dr Who theme - Ron Grainer & Delia Derbyshire
Master and Servant - Depeche Mode
Don't Tell Me - Concord Dawn
We Have Explosive - Future Sound of London
Inspection (Check One) - Leftfield
Remind - Orbital