If someone were to ask me what my favourite song of all time were, I can always answer them in complete honesty within a heart beat. It is a simple, clear and easy choice for me to make, you see there is but one song that stands head and shoulders above the rest in my book. However, asked to compile a list of my top ten favourite songs of all time, as I have been, I have to admit to being fairly flummoxed by such a task, no actually if the truth will out, I’ll confess to being completely baffled. You see there are many songs that I call favourites, I’ve even compiled a list of those and it runs to quite number, yet when I try to curtail that list to just nine songs, well that’s when the real mental anguish and torment starts, I find it completely impossible to do. I could argue with myself for a month of Sunday’s and still be no nearer a top tep, so therefore, I do apologise Stephen, (he was the chap that asked) I am unable to complete the task you requested via email (if anyone else wishes to make contact that way, the address is jasonshaw @ seafrontdiary.com) However, after much cogitation I present a little mini feature of my favourite favourites, a personal pop hall of fame if you will, a trip into my tastes and where possible I’ve tried to include a line or two about why each particular song finds a place in my favourite favourites. Enjoy if you will, ignore if you wont.
Please forgive me when I start with my all time top most favourite song of all time, I know it’s pure indulgence on my part, any excuse huh? However, my week would not be complete without just a little sunshine on this rainy day.
Louis Armstrong - What Wonderful world
This one is always this one that comes out top of all my considerations. The simple arrangement, the gentle piano, the unmistakeable voice of Louis delivering heartfelt lyrics with an understated honest sincerity, all combine to create an unapologetic truly great song.
I am sure many would not agree, some would even say it is a song made of syrup and the lyrics are so sickly sweet it’s positively nauseating, yet for me it remains an iconic song that really reaches into my heart and causes a slightly ruthful smile to crease my face upon each and every hearing. Indeed it is such a special song for me that I played it during every single AM radio show I presented for the Allied Radio group and quite a few of the FM ones too. Whilst it was a big hit in the UK during 1968, it failed to even break the Billboard top 100 in the USA, mainly due to the lack of support and promotion from the record company boss Larry Newton who really hated the song and tried to half the recording session and had to be locked out of the studio. Many viewed this song as a political instrument written by George Weiss and Bob Thiele as an antidote to all the fractious racial and political events taking place at the time and Armstrong was the ideal candidate to deliver the song thanks to his appeal to both the black and white audience. Apparently there were some members of this audience that doubted its sentiment and meaning, Armstrong himself is quoted as saying ‘"Some of you young folks been saying to me: 'Hey, Pops - what do you mean, what a wonderful world? How about all them wars all over the place, you call them wonderful? But how about listening to old Pops for a minute? Seems to me it ain't the world that's so bad but what we're doing to it, and all I'm saying is: see what a wonderful world it would be if only we'd give it a chance. Love, baby - love. That's the secret."
I could argue with him even if I wanted to!
© 2012 Copyright to Jason Shaw. However, please do email me if you want to use anything, I'll probably let you as long as you credit me and link back to the relative post.