Help! I need to expand my music horizons!

Discussion in 'Music' started by Kevin Porter, Oct 19, 2003.

  1. Kevin Porter

    Kevin Porter Supporting Actor

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    Ever since I got iTunes I've been feeling like I need a music education. I feel like I don't have the basics. I have never heard songs (As far as I know. Or at least bought) songs from such icons as

    -Johnny Cash
    -Elvis Costello
    -The Rolling Stones
    -Ray Charles
    -Buddy Holly
    -Coldplay

    And so on. Many I can't recall. And I've only bought 1 song from

    -U2
    -REM

    What I'm saying is that I need reccomendations for the basics. The basic songs that I really haven't had any exposure to. I would really like to get into each of these artists (And others I might not have listed) but it's hard to know where to start. I really want to get a good music library. It might help ya'll to know what I do like. Well for starters:

    -Stuck In The Middle With You - Stealers Wheel
    -Little Green Bag - George Baker Selection
    -It's Your Thing - The Isley Brothers
    -Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down) - Nancy Sinatra
    -Walk On - U2
    -At Last - Etta James
    -Everybody Hurts - REM
    -Green Onions - Booker T. and the MGs
    -Cissy Strut - The Meters
    -You Never Can Tell - Chuck Berry
    -Be Still My Soul - Lisbeth Scott
    -Son of a Preacher Man - Dusty Springfield
    -September - Earth Wind and Fire
    -Run Faye Run - Issac Hayes
    -My Weakness - Moby
    -Everloving - Moby
    -Battle Without Honor or Humanity - Tomoyasu Hotei
    -Autumn in Connecticut - Elmer Bernstein

    Actually I love all of those and yes I am aware that about 1/4 of them are from Tarantino flicks. Like I said, I really want a solid music library/collection. Any reccomendations would be welcome. And don't just limit yourselves to the bands aformentioned. Any essentials that I might not have because of my musical stupidness.
     
  2. PhilBoy

    PhilBoy Second Unit

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    For starter, pick a band & get a 'best of' or 'greatest' collection...

    As far as the Stones go, "40 Licks".
     
  3. Chet_F

    Chet_F Supporting Actor

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    Johnny Cash - American IV - The Man Comes Around

    The last great CD of an amazing artist. It's really hard to explain. I think Johnny KNEW it was his last chance to really shine.
     
  4. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Kevin, are you saying you've never heard any Stones material or that you simply never have bought a Stones recording? I mean, "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" is just about the most widely and highly regarded rock&roll tune of all time.
     
  5. Kevin Porter

    Kevin Porter Supporting Actor

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    Well I probably have in fact heard one of their tunes but if I did, I wasn't aware of it. Can you tell I really need help?
     
  6. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Well, Kevin, it's just unusual for someone not to have heard (or to be certain he or she has heard) anything by the second most popular and influential rock band in history. "Ruby Tuesday"? "Start Me Up"? "Mother's Little Helper"? "Get Off of my Cloud"? "Black Sugar"? "Sympathy for the Devil"? "Gimme Shelter"?

    These are standards with which you might want to familiarize yourself.
     
  7. LawrenceK

    LawrenceK Stunt Coordinator

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    Elvis Costello - My Aim Is True, This Year's Model
    The Rolling Stones - 40 Licks, Exile on Main St.
    R.E.M. - Automatic for the People

    Those are the best that I have heard from those bands. But...they all have pretty extensive discographies. I personally disagree with the "greatest hits" collection routes, except in the case of the Stones, because I almost always prefer the "hits" in relation to the album they were put on. Also, greatest hits often pass over truly great songs because they were never issued as singles. Since you are using iTunes, what have you got to lose? It is only $9 for an album, which is a pretty safe bet. I can almost guarantee your enjoyment of any of the albums I just named.
     
  8. jeff peterson

    jeff peterson Supporting Actor

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    Jack, Jack, Jack....

    "BLACK Sugar"?:b
     
  9. Kevin Porter

    Kevin Porter Supporting Actor

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    Thanks guys for the reccomendations so far. And don't just limit yourselves to the bands that I mentioned. Any essentials that I might not have because of my musical stupidness. I'm such an idiot when it comes to music.
     
  10. Peter Mazur

    Peter Mazur Second Unit

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    As far as U2 goes my favorites albums are:

    Boy
    War
    Joshua Tree
    Achtung Baby

    Songs you might try:

    I Will Follow
    An Cat Dubh
    I Threw A Brick Through A Window
    Sunday Bloody Sunday
    New Year's Day
    Two Hearts Beat As One
    Pride (In The Name Of Love)
    Bad
    I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For
    With Or Without You
    Bullet The Blue Sky
    Heartland
    Even Better Than The Real Thing
    One
    Stay (Faraway, So Close)
    Discotheque
    Staring At The Sun
    Beautiful Day

    These are a few songs from each album to get a sample of the different sounds they have had through the years.

    Also, if you really want the basics, you must start with The Beatles. All of their albums are truly mandatory for any serious collection. The albums I personally would recommend first are:

    Revolver
    Rubber Soul
    Sgt. Pepper
    Abbey Road
     
  11. Glenn Overholt

    Glenn Overholt Producer

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    Ok, I have to say that this is very difficult to do. To me, the base would be the early days of rock & roll, which would be the late '50's - like 'Ricky Nelson' & 'Buddy Holly', but some of their roots go back to the blues, and jazz, which came before that.

    The '60's brought about many changes, from 'Elvis Presley', 'The Beach Boys' and then 'The Beatles', 'Rolling Stones' all the way through the acid rock of the late '60's, and then disco, and so on, and so on.

    To me, the 'Best of...' albums are a better buy, because if you do like them, then you can get the rest, and see how they changed from album to album. If you don't, you haven't lost as much. Do you prefer a solo singer to a group, or one guitar, a band of 4 to 8, or bands with orchestra's behind them?

    You might have certain preferences too, like a good lead guitar, or even drums or a banjo. You don't have to hear everything to get a good start, and if you end up liking everything you won't have enough time to see any movies, which is why you are here in the first place!

    Just trying to help you to narrow it down a bit, because there are a ton of groups out there.

    Glenn
     
  12. John Watson

    John Watson Screenwriter

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    Movie "soundtrack" compilations can give an indication of the amazing variety of music you may come to enjoy.

    Some are pretty lame as movie theme support, but the variety of songs on them makes them a good bet.

    Try DINER.

    Anyone who likes "You Never Can Tell" should like that one. DINER actually has an Elvis track, which is very unusual on a compilation.

    Personally, my inclination these days to broaden my horizons is towards jazz and classical.
     
  13. PhilBoy

    PhilBoy Second Unit

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    Kevin,

    As you are a 'musical virgin', here is what to avoid...

    Disco. It never really happened.
     
  14. RobertW

    RobertW Supporting Actor

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    as far as i can tell, you're looking for individual songs to download from itunes?

    if you really liked the earth wind and fire, then you have to hear "that's the way of the world", "shining star", and "sun goddess". i was a huge earth wind and fire fan back in the late seventies.
     
  15. LarryDavenport

    LarryDavenport Cinematographer

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    I have 2500 CDs and they are ALL essential!
     
  16. Dave Bennett

    Dave Bennett Screenwriter

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    Give a listen to some samples of Steely Dan songs. Steely Dan is a very acquired taste but it's great music IMO and just about everyone agrees it's techinically very complex and textured. I think every Steely Dan album is on the iTunes store.
    Good albums to start samplinga are Aja, Gaucho, and Katy Lied. Definately give a listen to Aja and Gaucho first. If you find you like them, go for some others and then grab Donald Fagen's awesome solo Album the Nightfly. As I said, the band is an acquired taste but it's really good sort of oddball music.
     
  17. LarryDavenport

    LarryDavenport Cinematographer

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    FYI-Here are my top 25 albums (not by the Beatles or Rolling Stones) (in no particular order).

    1. Television - Marquee Moon
    2. The Stooges - Fun House
    3. Love - Forever Changes
    4. The Who - Sell Out
    5. Love Battery - Dayglo
    6. The Afghan Whigs - Gentlemen
    7. Frank Zappa - One Size Fits All
    8. Miles Davis - Kind of Blue
    10. John Coltrane - Ole
    11. Genesis - The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway
    12. Pink Floyd - Meddle
    13. The Monkees - Headquarters
    14. VA - Nuggets
    15. The Small Faces - Small Faces (Immediate)
    16. The Doors - Strange Days
    17. Jimi Hendrix - Electric Ladyland
    18. The Zombies - Oddysey & Oracle
    19. Sonic Youth - Evol
    20. Johnny Cash - The Essential Sun Recordings
    21. Isaac Hayes - Hot Buttered Soul
    22. The O'Jays - Love Train: The Best of
    23. The Dead Kennedy's - Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables
    24. The Beach Boys - Surf's Up
    25. King Crimson - In The Court of the Crimson King
     
  18. Angelo.M

    Angelo.M Producer

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    I disagree with the "greatest hits album" strategy. In the short term, you'll probably discover some things you like, but you might be less inclined later to really explore the catalogs of important artists. You'll eventually get much more out of "Blood on the Tracks" than "Bob Dylan's Greatest Hits Vol. 2".

    Also, thanks to the 'Net, there is still some decent radio around, which might help you. I recommend a listen to New York's WFUV, the radio voice of Fordham University (not an alum, don't work there, just a fan!). You'll find a great mix of new and classic rock, pop, folk and other genres, plus NPR news. Finally, use www.allmusic.com as a tool for helping you to organize your search for the good stuff.
     
  19. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    i actually agree with the greatest hits strategy. what better way to get a good cross-section of their music. if you don't like their greatest hits, it's doubtful you'll like their standalone albums.

    okay, i'm just gonna rattle off a few that i can think of.

    radiohead
    one of my all-time faves. if you like coldplay, you'll almost certainly like them. call these guys....ummm...i dunno....experimental/alt/rock? unlike many groups, they have really shifted their sound. their early stuff is more rocky, their latest stuff more electronicky

    beth orton
    okay, she may be my all time fave singer. her vocals are so awesome and her sound is truly unique. she is really "big" in the industry, very well known. she has a sultry/raspy/seductive voice. all her albums are worthwhile - try "central reservation" or "trailer park".

    bjork
    you may not like her music, but you gotta love her creativity. formerly of the sugarcubes, she has truly broken out on her own. her vocal stylings can sometimes grate your spine, but at the same time, she is just too damn irresistable. go for the greatest hits - which are songs that were chosen by her fans

    concrete blond
    featuring the vocal stylings of johnette napolitano - she presents a harder-edged sound than many female vocals...and the band can defintely back her up. their greatest hits album (titled "recollection") is a must-have.

    delerium
    in the same style as enigma. very electronic. if you like *that* sound, then this is a band for you. sweeping and organic, yet infused with a modern beat. typically they have recognizable names do the singing - including people like sara mac, sinead o'connor, poe, etc. their breakout album is "karma", but just about any of their stuff will do. i really like their new album too...can't remember what it's called.

    diana krall
    if jazz and standards are your thing, then her album "live in paris" is a must-have. premium quality recording only helps. i've probably listened to this album more then any other album while i'm at work. it skips and be-bops along quite nicely.

    morcheeba
    more electronic stuff. hard to define...sort of wordly i guess would be accurate. wonderful sweeping textures and a lovely voice by their lead singer. best-of is called "parts of the process", but "big calm" is also a great choice.

    nickel creek
    i guess folk would be a good term for these guys? i'm not a huge fan, but i like them enough that i think you should give them a try. i know there are other fans here at htf.

    saint etienne
    another one of my all-time faves bands. the lead singer's voice is simply....heavenly. these guys run the gamut: uptempo dance, 70's infused mono, haunting soundscapes, etc. "smash the system" is their best of, and every song on it is great. otherwise, give their first (?) album "foxbase alpha" a try.

    wilco
    i just recently got into these guys and i love em. if you're tired of electronic, rap, dance, or anything that involves uber-processed mixes, then these guys are just right. alt-country at it's best. i love listening to these guys when i'm burned out. the only albums i have from them are "being there" and "yankee hotel foxtrot". i would have no problem recommending either one...i'll give a slight nod to being there.
     
  20. Stu Rosen

    Stu Rosen Second Unit

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    For starters, you can listen to discs other than Tarantino movie soundtracks!
     

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