Tuesday, November 11, 2008

And I would rock five hundred styles

The Pitchfork 500 book dropped today with Pitchforkmedia's take on the five hundred best songs of the past three decades "beyond the typical Baby Boomer-approved canon of the Clash, Prince, Public Enemy, Nirvana, Radiohead, and Outkast", as their news release states.

Outkast is "Baby Boomer-approved"? Who knew? Pitchfork's list of songs covered is actually pretty decent, with tracks across many different genres. The five hundred songs come from 438 different artists, and the highest represent comes from Talking Heads with four songs. Ten other artists in the Boomer-approved canon (The Clash,The Cure, New Order, Outkast, Pavement, the Pixies, Prince, Radiohead, and the Smiths) get three songs each.

I like that they're ranking songs instead of albums, and didn't rank them from 1-500 or give them scores, but just listed them chronologically with a paragraph or two explaining why they were selected. It's more geeky than snobby, and a great way to hip the unhip to songs or artists they weren't hip to before.

The Pitchfork 500 is almost as worthwhile as as McSweeny's
"Fifty Years Of Popular Songs Condensed Into Single Sentences".

The Beatles- "I Want to Hold Your Hand" = I want to do it with you.
Marvin Gaye- "Let's Get It On" = I want to do it with you.
Led Zeppelin- "Whole Lotta Love" = I want to do it with you.
James Blunt- "You're Beautiful" = I want to do it with you.
R. Kelly- "I Believe I Can Fly" = I believe I want to do it with you.
AC/DC- "You Shook Me All Night Long" = We did it yesterday.

1 comment:

2fs said...

While there's obviously room for quibbles - why this song instead of that one? - I must admit, the songs that are on this list are pretty undeniable. I don't know all of them, of course - and I'm sure I wouldn't like some of them (I'm looking at you, metal songs) - but I'd like to read why I should like them, or why someone else does. I'll put this on my xmas list!