The List

Top 50

Clearly I have too much time on my hands.

At least for another week or so anyway.

What’s also clear is that I must have rocks in my head to even consider undertaking  a whale of a task such as this.

Rocks undeniably, but as I think you’ll agree, once you’ve scrolled the list, by no means have I overlooked the pop, hip-hop, dance, electro, funk and a little bit of country if you please as well.

How to reduce four decades of fervent music listening down to a list of just 50 of my all-time favourite songs?

Wasn’t easy, but here we go –

Start reading

Each entry has a link underneath it if you want to listen. The list can also be found on SCENIC WRITER’S SHACK under the tab ‘Best Of’.

Got a comment?

This is the place.

Don’t be an invisible bundle of your own ideas.

Your thoughts will be welcomed, as always, but most especially on this subject, like bread-crumbs handed to a starving lag.

Any of these tunes appeal?

If not, what’s a song on your desert island playlist?

desert island




24 thoughts on “The List

  1. Had the sneaking suspicion a glaring omission such as that might incur a kick in the ribs from someone somewhere along the line.

    Believe me Anita, the heart was willing but somehow, with so many tunes whirring around in my head at the same time, it seems my listing pen wasn’t.

    How could I forget the sight of Freddie Mercury cavorting around in his Fonzie-like white t-shirt and black leather jacket in CRAZY LITTLE THING CALLED LOVE (1980). Or for that matter the gender-bending Freddie in the classic anthem I WANT TO BREAK FREE (1984). Don’t think the theme from FLASH (1980) would really make anyone’s top songs list but I definitely liked it.

    Their duet with David Bowie, UNDER PRESSURE (1982) also brings back fond memories. And naturally everyone’s favourite rock anthem (next to AC/DC’s THUNDERSTRUCK) has to be Queen’s stone cold timeless classic WE WILL ROCK YOU (1977). But for me, my favourite Queen song will always be ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST. (1980).

    Thanks Anita for bringing me back to my senses with your gentle reminder of what real music is.
    You were too polite to come right out and ask, “What’s all that electronic rap crap doing in there?” – weren’t you?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A brave endeavour indeed attempting such a task. I was quite chuffed when I saw Noiseworks scroll up my screen. They did come to mind as I worked through the list. I was impressed to remember that the Divinyls did actually lift their game to produce a couple of classy songs after they debuted in my life during lunch breaks at the Uni of NSW back in 1980. My first impression of her was that she had serious personal issues.

    I think any list like this is enjoyable as it makes one reminisce. I’m also impressed I managed to spell the last word in the previous sentence without the spell checker pulling me up. I doubt I could make a list in any order except for perhaps time in life.

    The 70’s would see me list songs by Fleetwood Mac, Beatles, Rolling Stones, The Eagles, Nazareth, Boz Scaggs, Led Zeppelin, Boston, and The Cars. Oops, I nearly forgot Thin Lizzy, Elton John, and The Sweet. 80’s would bring to mind Hall & Oates, Pet Shop Boys, 1921, Southern Sons, and John Waite (Missing You). 90’s would be Noiseworks, Debra Conway, INXS,

    On it goes. I’m sure I’d come up with more than 50, but maybe not 50 artists. 🙂

    Thanks Glen for stirring the memories.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh the Eagles, my wordy Lordy yes!!!! Fleetwood Mac too. I can see a tunes fest coming on for me today… so many memories attached to music. Uni features highly indeed: Hoodoo Gurus a major influence for me, along with Counting Crows, U2, Melissa Etheridge, Blur and Placebo.
      Aaahhhh the memories.


      • You’re definitely in luck then Shannon when it comes to the last rockers you mentioned, Placebo. As I’m thinking you are already aware, the reformed outfit play the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre September 11th.

        Careful though.

        As everyone knows, if you’ve got good memories of them back when they were at their peak, seeing them again years down the track could run the risk of acting as a spoiler of sorts, if you know what I mean.

        For the dedicated fan though, precious memories can never be erased or even tarnished.


  3. Nazareth?
    I admit I had to look that one up.
    Scottish hard rock band formed in 1968 that is amazingly still together today and touring with at least one original band member.
    Their last studio album (Rock ‘N Roll Telephone) was back in 2014 but incredibly, since their inception, they’ve never broken up and have kept going all this time by continuing to augment and replace their lineup when needed.

    Thanks Rog for supplementing my inner rock historian on this one.

    Ps. If it’s true what you say about your unaided spelling of the word ‘reminisce’, then indeed that is a back-slaps moment to savour.


  4. What?
    No Fire and Rain by James Taylor????
    Glen, I’m shattered.

    Such a highly personal choice, one’s top 50 tracks of all time. Some artists/songs completely surprise me (Delta – Sitting on Top of the World) as well as the Nikki Minaj and Ariana Grande choices… just not selections I ever would have anticipated from you. Neil Young’s ‘Heart of Gold’ would have been my preference to ‘Old Man’, as would ‘Take me Back’ have trumped ‘Lies’ by Noiseworks.

    Not a 1927 fan?
    Surprises me.

    Quite a few of your choices I’m ashamed to say I’m not familiar with, but again, music is such a personal choice. Billy Joel, Dire Straits, Simon and Garfunkel and obviously Melissa Etheridge would had to have featured on my own list.. As would a Springsteen song or two, with a bit of Celtic influence thrown in for good measure. Perhaps I’ll attempt the task myself and compare… Then again, I doubt it as I lack your patience and absolute attention to detail.

    Well done Glen, another fascinating read.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Would anyone believe me if I said I threw in Nikki Minaj and Ariana Grande just so I could shamelessly appear cool to the next-gens?

    Actually, I do love those two songs by those artists but again I’ll confess that it was my seven year old daughter who had them playing on her, what’s that new-old fangled thingy called, an ipod?

    Funny you should mention about Neil Young, ’cause I was faced with that exact dilema when listing – do I go for what, for many years, long ago, was my favourite song ‘Heart of Gold’ or one of any countless other stella hits in his vast anthology?

    In the end, as you saw, ‘Old Man’ got the nod but it could just have easily been ‘Heart of Gold’ (As you know, they’re both from the same 1972 classic album ‘Harvest’ which, many would agree, without really trying to, was more like a Greatest Hits collection than just another assemblage of a dozen or so songs).

    And Springsteen?
    His omission caused me some pain and guilts, don’t worry.
    Favourite song of his from so many to choose from?
    ‘Human Touch’ (1992).

    This one’s for you Shannon..


    • Hahahaha thanks Glen… So many great Springsteen songs. I must admit to being a huge fan of ‘The River’ and also ‘Secret Garden’. Ballads get me every time 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Beauts both of ’em, that deservedly sit alongside my other two Boss faves – ‘Glory Days’ (’84) and ‘Tunnel of Love’ (’87).
    That could be a whole seperate list unto itself.
    But in all seriousness – does anyone really wanna challenge Elvis (‘Love Me Tender’ – 1956) or Whitney Houston (“Didn’t We Almost Have it All” – 1987) in the heartstrings-pulling stakes?
    Didn’t think so.


  7. What a massive task you gave yourself Glen! I did agree with some – Delta, Kiss, Human Nature, The Beatles. But, I would have added Bee Gees, John Farnham, Michael Jackson, Elvis……………..

    Liked by 1 person

  8. {From Glen Donaldson: This is gonna seem weird, like I’m composing comments to myself – which btw, I’m definitely not above – but a good citizen by the name of Monsiour Geoffrey Richardson tried to post the following comment, but due to whatever technical ineptitude on his part (love ya buddy!) it never made it to its destination. Never one to stand in the way of a thoroughly exercised opinion, here’s Geoff’s remarks} –

    Glen, Glen, Glen, what were you thinking?!

    No room for Imagine, Hotel California, American Pie, Heard it on the Grapevine, Sweet Child O’ Mine, Stairway to Heaven, Bohemian Rhapsody, American Pie, Billie Jean, Good Vibrations, Yesterday, What a Wonderful World, Under Pressure, Hey Jude, Piano Man?

    The list goes on and on, doesn’t it?

    I’ll give you credit, though, you have made many brave choices.
    I hadn’t heard of some of the songs, so I played them. I still didn’t recognise some of them!
    I guess that leads to the question, what makes a great song? Is it that feeling you get from a memorable tune that you can identify with even years later, or is that song you just can’t get out of your head?

    Music is sooo subjective, and you’ve just proven that with your list. Some of your choices, I would say, are inspired such as ‘I Don’t Know Much’, the ‘Rocky’ theme, ‘Amazing’, ‘Rock in the USA’ and of course, ‘Old Man’. Just listening to the music brings back great memories, and that’s what music does. Finally, I’d just like to say that this is probably the only Top 50 in History that includes Martin Plaza, Jenny Morris, Fatboy Slim, Nicki Minaj and Ariana Grande!

    Enough said!
    Great job, Glen!
    Like I said, ‘some brave choices!’
    Excellent blog.


    • These type of impossible lists are always like trying to pick a single plate of food from a smorgasboard 10 000 times more palatial than the variety on offer from a Sizzler salad bar.

      Do you go with the Mongolian lamb and pulled pork accompanied by oven-roasted Greek potatoes with maybe an Asian noodle salad or how about a nice tuna casserole with ground beef stuffed Greenbell peppers and a Greek salad with Mexican rice? ‘Cause if you opt for either one of those stomach-fillers, dollars to donuts you’re not gonna leave any room for the angel chicken bourbon pasta, the Salisbury steak or of course the mouth-watering lobster.

      Not to mention the delicious crusty French bread you’ll be forced to overlook, nor the tables and tables full of pastries, deserts of every description and for every taste and the crystal bowls of trail mix and dried fruit no one ever seems to go near. Still hungry? Maybe, but there will come a point where even a gourmet won’t physically be able to fill up another time and therefore have to admit they weren’t able to sample all the foods on offer despite maybe wanting to. I think you get the picture!

      All this and your comments make me think that at some distant time in the future I’ll need to compose a 2nd Top 50 Songs list.

      Before that though, you and every other reader of this blog will be forced to plough through myTop 50 TV Shows list.

      You knew I couldn’t stop at just the one! (list)


  9. Ariana was one of my shameless attempts to keep the list somewhat contemporary rather than resorting to merely an irrelevant nostalgic trip down memory boulevard.

    I’m guessing that Katy Perry or Miley Cyrus making it to the next list would leave you feeling equally underwhelmed?


  10. Mate, well done for compiling a list of tunes from a variety of genres.
    Great selections on the remixes too! The Max Graham re-rub of Yes – Owner of a Lonely Heart is a wicked track. He played a Rooftop party in Brisbane not long ago. Legend!
    Another great read Glen!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. As someone who I know has seen Max Graham (Canadian DJ) at a live gig, I’m very happy you cast your experienced DJ’s eye and ear over this list John.


  12. You and I have such a different music upbringing and musical interests! You def have some good ones in your list but you need to dump Christine Anu and listen to My Island home by the Warumpi Band.
    Do yourself a favour 🎶

    Liked by 1 person

  13. When you advise “Do yourself a favour”, I take it Joanne you’re wearing an Akubra cowboy hat, cause harking back to the ‘ol Molly Meldrum COUNTDOWN days, that’s definitely how I picture it!

    You’ve absolutely picked up on the fact that a number of these tunes are not the original version of the song sung by the original artist. Another example in this list was the song that came in at #10, “Walk on the Wild Side” (”Doot, di-doot, di-doot…”) by early ninties one hit wonder Jamie J. Morgan (the original version having been sung by the incomparable Lou Reed).

    If a number of versions of a song existed, I’ve gone for the one that most appealed to me personally, with sometimes (as it turned out) no regard to the lineage or origins of the song.

    But you’re right – The Warumpi Band’s version (the original) which came eight years before Christine Anu’s cover was wonderful. My personal favourite from The Warumpi Band was their song “Blackfella/Whitefella” which I recall independant college radio station 4ZZZ had on high rotation back around ’85/’86.

    Blimey, that’s too long ago!


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