I assume we all have examples of this: you hear a song and really dig it, but when you hear other songs by the same artist or band, you just don’t like them. It’s a weird phenomenon, but it happens. So that’s the Question: What’s your favorite song by one of these acts?
To be clear, I don’t mean a one-hit wonder where you’ve never heard any of the band’s other songs. I love “Safety Dance,” but I’ve literally never heard any other songs by Men Without Hats, so I don’t know if I like them or not. I mean acts whose other songs you’ve actually heard, just so you know.
Some examples from me: I have never been a fan of Madonna – when I was young, I didn’t dig that kind of music, and now that I’m older and have no problem with dance-y pop, I still don’t really like her that much. But damn if “Borderline” isn’t amazing, and I love it. Of slightly more recent vintage: Some years back, some bloggers and I used to exchange CDs of songs that we liked and wanted to share, and Roger sent me one with “Oh Virginia” by Blessid Union of Souls on it. I liked it so much I bought Home, the album on which it appears, and … well, the rest of the album is kind of blah. It’s not terrible, but it’s not great. Just mediocre. Oh well. Of even more recent vintage: I’m not sure where I first heard Pepper’s “Fuck Around (All Night),” but I fell in love with the song and bought the album on which it appears, Pepper, which is … again, just kind of there. Some good songs, most forgettable, and nothing as good as “Fuck Around.”
My favorite song by a band I don’t really like, though, is … well, it’s a Springsteen song. I grew up in suburban Pennsylvania in the 1980s, and not liking Springsteen was almost an insult to the people who did, but I have never liked the Boss. He sounds (and looks) like he’s constipated when he’s singing, and I just never bought his whole “everyman” schtick. It doesn’t help that the first Springsteen song I ever heard was “Dancing in the Dark,” which is definitely not one of his highlights. But! I had friends who were into Springsteen, and in the mid-1980s he really hit it big, so I’ve heard a lot of Springsteen songs over the years, and I actually liked one! Yes, my favorite Springsteen song, and the only one I really like, is “She’s the One.” Dang, it’s awesome:
There’s nothing not great about this song, from the quiet keyboard at the beginning to the break after the first verse to the rolling bridge into the thunderous saxophone solo to the superb lyrics that, for once, Bruce doesn’t butcher with his mumbling … man, it’s awesome. Why can’t all Springsteen songs be like this? (Yes, I know Springsteen fans will tell me they are like this, but, you know, they’re wrong.)
That’s my choice for favorite song by an act I don’t really like. What’s yours, good readers?