Monday, February 09, 2004

Here are the liner notes for the Referential Mix I made for Tommy:

1. Running Down a Dream - Tom Petty: What better way to kick off a mix than with a great guitar lick? The ultimate driving song about listening to a driving song (Del Shannon’s “Runaway”)
2. Maybe Angels - Sheryl Crow: Elvis, Kurt Cobain, John Lennon, and Jesus (arguably the world’s first rock star).
3. Surrender - Cheap Trick: Makes me think of Damone from Fast Times more than it makes me think about Kiss, but a good song nonetheless. Cheap Trick is actually going on tour with Aerosmith this summer… and Aerosmith just finished touring with Kiss… what a tangled web.
4. Born in the 50s - The Police: Would a song called “Born in the 80s” have any impact at all? Instead of “screaming for the Beatles,” they’d be screaming for New Kids on the Block? That’s an odd thing to think about.
5. The Seeker - The Who: I was all set to put “You Better, You Bet” on here, but changed at the last minute because 1) I had another song referencing T. Rex and 2) this is a better song. Good thing too, because you put “You Better, You Bet” on yours. Do you think anyone else has ever called Bob Dylan “Bobby”?
6. Blinded By the Light - Bruce Springsteen: I may have cheated a bit using a classical reference, but the lyrics of this song are incredible and come off much better than the poppier, more-famous version by Manfred Mann.
7. All the Young Dudes - Mott the Hoople: A better T. Rex-referential song that the Who’s.
8. Life Is Real – Queen: Subtitled “Song for Lennon.”
9. Make Me Lose Control - Eric Carmen: Odd that this is from an album released in 1977 but became a hit in 1988. I remember hearing this song for the first time on a bus from the airport to summer camp (my first time going to camp without my sister) and being calm. And I think that almost everyone knows the words to “Stand By Me” by heart.
10. Come On Eileen - Dexy's Midnight Runners: I came very close to not including this song, because I thought you’d hate it. But the reference to Johnnie Ray was too good to pass up.
11. Beethoven (I Love to Listen to) – Eurythmics
12. Rocket - Def Leppard: I got the cassette of Hysteria when I was 8, and I’m sure that in my lifetime I’ve listened to that album more than any other. Of course, when I was 8, I couldn’t identify any of the long list of references (except for “Benny & the Jets”).
13. The New Style - Beastie Boys: Could anyone think of a better rhyme for Jimmy Page than “the girlies I like are underage”?
14. When We Was Fab - George Harrison: Obviously there are covert references to the Beatles, but he also mentions songs by Dylan and Gayle McCormick. I used to think this was one of the coolest videos ever made, but watching it now, it’s just cheesy – Ringo is the biggest ham in showbiz.
15. When Smokey Sings – ABC: When Smokey sings, I think of this song.
16. Life in a Northern Town - Dream Academy: I wouldn’t have put this on if you didn’t once mention that you liked Dream Academy, which took me by surprise. Sadly, this is the 6th song on this mix that references the Beatles (or one of its members).
17. Fight the Power - Public Enemy

You can find Tommy's track list / liner notes here. He turned his into a double-CD; however, he doubled (and even tripled) up on many artists. Selectivity is the hardest part of this type of project, which is why I'm penalizing him. But I still have to give him credit for an excellent compilation and for introducing me to some fantastic music.
*Note - after no duplicates in our first swap, we have 3 duplicates on this one, and 4 others that potentially could've been (I almost put in "You Better You Bet," "Dio," and "Do You Remember Rock & Roll Radio," he almost put in "Come On Eileen"). Fascinating similarities.

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