Sunday, 13 March 2011

Top 100 Songs of the 1970s, #10 - 1

Queen: Can they make it to the top?

Boom! What's that sound? I'd say 'Boom!' is exactly what it will sound like when your head explodes after reading this post. Why? Because you won't be able to handle just how awesome the top 10 songs of the 1970s are. That's right, we've come to the end of our countdown and only the best of the best remain. It's not just ten amazing songs we're looking at either... the ten acts featured today define the words 'iconic' and 'legendary' and created enduring legacies that keep their stars shining bright. Except, you know, for *Spoiler Alert* Ike Turner, but that's neither here nor there. Moving right along, here they are... the top 10 songs of the 1970s!

#10 - Stairway to Heaven (1971)
by Led Zeppelin

There's a feeling I get, when I look to the west,
And my spirit is crying for leaving...

'Stairway to Heaven' marks the first of several epic, super-sized songs to make the top 10. Coming in at just over eight minutes, the song is regarded by many as the greatest rock song of all time and Jimmy Page's guitar solo is continuously awarded as the greatest guitar solo by music publications around the globe. Number ten is also a familiar charting placement for the track; fans voted it into the same position on the JJJ Hottest 100 of All Time in 2009.

#9 - Superstition (1972)
by Stevie Wonder

Very superstitious,
Writing's on the wall...

Sometimes a song that makes you want to get up and move can be greater than an epic 8 minute classic rock anthem. 'Superstition' is one of those songs. 

#8 - Imagine (1971)
by John Lennon

Imagine there's no heaven,
It's easy if you try...

Speaking of anthems... I'm sure many people will scratch their heads at what could be considered a low placement of 'Imagine.' After all, it's at number three on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. However, there are seven songs I love more from the 1970s so um... you want it higher? Start your own blog!  

#7 - Wish You Were Here (1975)
by Pink Floyd

We're just two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl,
Year after year...

'Wish You Were Here' is pretty much a life-changing song. It's really that good.

#6 - American Pie (1971)
by Don McLean

Well I know that you're in love with him,
'cause I saw you dancin' in the gym...

Obviously referring to 'the day the music died' for the most part, but lyrically ambiguous for the rest, Don McLean's answer to what the song really meant was, "It means I never have to work again." Don McLean is one smooth operator. A smooth operator that knew the goldmine he was sitting on when 'American Pie' was released. What we've learnt over the past couple of decades is that it should never be covered (yes Madonna, I'm talking about you) but does work surprisingly well with mash-ups (it was combined with 'Dog Days Are Over' to make up the best mash-up of 2010). 

#5 - Blue (1971)
by Joni Mitchell

Everybody's saying that hell's the hippest way to go...

Few songwriters can stir up as much emotion in a listener with such a simple song as Joni Mitchell can. Actually, that's a bad sentence, but I couldn't be bothered to get rid of it. Joni Mitchell produces songs that on the surface appear simple, generally just using voice and piano or voice and guitar. But when you dig deeper, you realise they're actually more complex than what many of her contemporaries were able to produce using a full orchestra and choir. If you want to really enjoy 'Blue,' invest yourself emotionally in it. That does sound a little wanky, but listen to the melody, pay attention to the lyrics and you'll understand what I'm talking about. Trust me, you won't regret it.

#4 - Proud Mary (1971)
by Ike and Tina Turner

I left a good job in the city,
Working for the man every night and day...

Tina Turner... often called the Queen of Rock for her ability to weather the test of time, in the face of any adversity. Her comeback after leaving her violent relationship with Ike Turner is considered one of the greatest of all time and saw her win the Grammy for Record of the Year during the 80s for 'What's Love Got to Do With It?' Her first Grammy win would come in the previous decade for 'Proud Mary.' A song that starts nice and easy, but finishes rough... the only way Tina Turner knows how to do 'Proud Mary.' Love it. 

#3 - Beautiful Child (1979)
by Fleetwood Mac

I'm not a child anymore,
I'm tall enough to reach for the stars...

You're probably sick of hearing about how much I love Fleetwood Mac (especially Stevie Nicks, who I am obligated to remind you is not a sheep, South Park be damned!), and if you've been around It's My Kind of Scene for awhile, you'll know that 'Beautiful Child' is Stevie Nicks' greatest contribution to music and a personal favourite for yours truly. So I won't bore you again, I'll just trust that you'll listen and enjoy. 

#2 - Tiny Dancer (1972)
by Elton John

Blue jean baby, L.A. Lady,
Seamstress for the band...

If you've seen Almost Famous, you'll understand why 'Tiny Dancer' is one of the greatest songs in the history of music. Oh, and one of the funnest songs to sing on a massive road trip. Yeah, I'm going to go watch Almost Famous now.

#1 - Bohemian Rhapsody (1975)
by Queen

Nothing really matters, anyone can see,
Nothing really matters, nothing really matters to me...

Anyway the wind blows....

Freddie Mercury earns his second number one on a countdown here on It's My Kind of Scene. With good reason too... come on, 'Bohemian Rhapsody' is epic, elaborate, complex; a bonafide musical masterpiece combining elements of rock, opera, metal and power pop. It's role in music's history goes beyond how awesome the song is though; the promotional music video changed the face of the industry forever, with every artist (and their dog... or is it goat?) clamouring to record a creative video to get attention. Some say the success of the 'Bohemian Rhapsody' video is what really kick-started the MTV generation. I wasn't exactly around then, so I'll just say maybe it did (Milhouse), maybe it did. Congratulations to Queen, 'Bohemian Rhapsody' is the #1 song of the 1970s!!

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