1. "Broken Wings" by Mr. Mister
The childish lyrics of this radio-heavy 80s zone-out aren't able to take any points away from the all time ultimate bass/synth groove. The song literally begins with a sigh of relief, followed by a true oxymoron of a mood: intense contentment.
2. "Drowse" by Queen
Serving suggestion : wait for the hottest day of the year, stare blankly into the orange haze, and turn the knob up to 11.
3. "These Dreams" by Heart
The hard liquor energy of 70s Heart turned into Cherry Coke in the 80s, and the fizzy sugar high of this power ballad proves that soft rock did, at one point in time, rock.
4. "Yer Blues" by The Beatles
A gritty downer of a jam from the band best known for writing original melodies about peace and love, it also marks one of their last true collaborations as a quartet.
5. "Your Love" by The Outfield
This is the sound of feathered hair and leather jackets from Sears. Play Loud.
6. "Little Lies" by Fleetwood Mac
Buckingham and Nicks may have dominated the band's best stuff in the 70s, but I'm a Christine McVie-in-the 80s fan; her consistently somber tone gets a lot more colorful with some electronic ham and cheese.
7. "Against the Wind" by Bob Seger
When you're 19, you think, "Hey, this song could be about me!" By the time you're 30, you know it is.
8. "He's a Rebel" by The Crystals
Written by Gene Pitney, produced by Phil Spector, sung with defiant "Fuck you" fervor by The Crystals. You can't fit more than that into a single song.
9. "Kill You" by Eminem
In a genre of overproduced egotism and lazy sampling, Mr. Mathers destroys the competition by openly posing a serious threat to society with little more than the beat of his own flow.
10. "Keeping the Faith" by Billy Joel
The King of Nostalgia packs it all into a song that recalls the Motown era, while simultaneously paying tribute to it.
11. "Man, I Feel Like A Woman" by Shania Twain
Maybe the most ripping chorus of any song -- if you don't dance, you're either a Nazi, or you're dead.
12. "Work Me, Lord" by Janis Joplin
If Otis Redding passed the R&B torch to Janis, then the flame went out when she left us: most evident in this song that rises and builds to a mountain of blusey and boozy lament.
13. "I Can't Go For That (No Can Do)" by Hall and Oates
A dark-sounding song that suggests a sense of urgency mixed with a sinister sexuality, implied by a halting beat and fairy dust keyboards. Good for city driving at night.
14. "Baby Come Back" by Player
Less about lost love, more about the visceral vibe of an era: it tastes like tequila and smells like jacuzzi steam. Very highly singable.
15. "Take it Easy" by The Eagles
Another sermon from the mountain that speaks very loudly to an angry young man with no easily defined problems.
16. "Lover Please" by Clyde McPhatter
Listen to this while driving, and you will violate traffic laws.
17. "Send Me An Angel" by Real Life
A windstorm of electronic New Wave that's just menacing enough that you can't quite dance to it.
18. "Crazy For You" by Madonna
Madge always did ballads right, the way that only she could: hauntingly sultry in lieu of sappy gloom. This song is the best example of that, and it's also the first 'new' song I can remember liking.
19. "Glad All Over" by Dave Clark Five
Forget Kool + The Gang - this reigns as the Number 1 Celebratory Anthem.
20. "Rosanna" by Toto
Picking a favorite Toto song is nearly as hard as picking a favorite Beatles song. But whenever I feel as tired of "Rosanna" as everyone else seems to be, I still find myself getting excited every time it comes on (which has been once every 10 minutes since 1982).
1. "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" by The Beatles
This is definitely the most influential piece of art in my life. Listen to it with your eyes closed and you will see into George Harrison's soul.
2. "Moonage Daydream" by David Bowie
This is the closest that any musician has ever come to being able to audibly and lyrically recreate an orgasm.
3. Road To Nowhere" by Talking Heads
We are all one beautiful mess trying to find our way.
4. "Sunny Afternoon" by The Kinks
This has always been my favorite song to sing along with. It just has one of the most calming melodies.
5. "California Dreaming" by The Mamas and the Papas
I feel like this song has been playing back on a loop in my mind for decades.
6. "A Quick One, While He's Away" by The Who (Live)
I feel like my spirit is on fire when I hear this at top volume.
7. "The Air That I Breath" by The Hollies
Arguably the most romantic song of all time. It will always make me think of us.
8. "I'm Your Boogyman" by KC and the Sunshine Band
I'm sure in a past life I would roller skate in cut-offs and knee socks to this disco anthem.
9. "Sad Songs Say So Much" by Elton John
The best upbeat melancholy tune to lean on.
10. "I Can't Decide" by Scissor Sisters
It was tough picking a favorite song by this out-of-this-world pop group. I chose this one because of how chipper it is about wanting someone dead.
11. "I Wanna Be Your Dog" by The Stooges
Iggy Pop has always had a thing for prominently displaying his dick in music. I get it.
12. "Live to Tell" by Madonna
My "this song is about me" song.
13. "Let It Loose" by The Rolling Stones
I feel like Mick Jagger is channeling me to quit grieving when I listen.
14. "Take Me Home" by Phil Collins
It always makes me wanna get to Paul as fast as I can.
15. "The Man Comes Around" by Johnny Cash
So honest and powerful about faith that it nearly converts me.
16. "Promises Promises" by Naked Eyes
Perhaps the greatest B-Side of all time.
17. "Hypnotize" by The Notorious BIG
Rap was at its peak at the height of his popularity and I genuinely believe the genre died with him.
18. "Golden Brown" by The Stranglers
A love letter to hardcore drugs. Truly erotic and equally terrifying.
19. "Waiting for the Miracle" by Leonard Cohen
This whole album was completed by someone just coming out of a several year stint as a monk. You can feel Cohen facing his inner demons, especially with this song.
20. "Message From the Country" by The Move
You don't need drugs to twirl around to this. Just do it.