21 July 2011

11 Songs

I don't add new choons to my iTunes library very often, instead tending to listen to the same old favourites again and again. Sometimes, I go off one of those old favourites, though. And sometimes I listened to a song that never quite made it to "favourite" status but was a real earworm so many times that it shot much higher up my iTunes most played list than it deserved. It takes quite a long way for these songs to fall out of my top ten most played songs and so I never felt this list was very representative of my all-time favourite songs.

But when I looked at my most played songs today, I was surprised to find that a lot of the top ten might actually be selected as my Desert Island Discs (well, the songs I'd want to select, if not necessarily the songs I think I ought to select). The top three, which all have over 300 plays since 2005 (when my records began) would definitely make my qualitative top ten (the songs I'd pick as my favourites, as opposed to the ones iTunes tells me are my favourites): if not the top three: Jeff Buckley's Hallelujah, Imogen Heap's Hide and Seek and Sufjan Stevens's For the Widows in Paradise. #4 is another Imogen Heap song (The Walk) and although it reached the 200-300 plays section, I wouldn't want to include two songs by the same artist in my qualitative top ten.

#5 to #8 form the OC contingent of my top ten most played (technically, Hallelujah was featured in The OC too but I liked it before I saw it there). In order: Worn Me Down (EP version) by Rachel Yamagata, Life Is a Song by Patrick Park, Wonderwall by Ryan Adams and the Bettie Serveert cover of Lover I Don't Have to Love. Ironic that I was an Oasis fan for so many years and their only song in my top ten most played is a cover by another artist (the original made it to #35).

#9 and #10 are songs I associate with Nowheresville: Crazy English Summer by Faithless and Wishful Thinking by Rupa & the April Fishes. I don't think the former deserves to be so high, although I do still listen to it fairly often so obviously I don't know my own taste as well as I think I do. The latter is still on its way up and will probably reach the top five soon.

Oh, and then because the #11 song is only one play behind the #10 (173 plays and 174, respectively), I don't think it's cheating to include my 11th song, the acoustic version of Bruce Springsteen's Thunder Road (and mainly the one on my computer, which is similar to this one); another song that's still climbing. Many of the rest of the songs in the top 30 were once in the top ten and have since fallen in my esteem. I still like them but they're not my favourites any more.

If I were to pick a qualitative top ten, it would probably go a little like this, although not necessarily in this order (and yes, I know you don't get ten songs on Desert Island Discs):

  1. Hallelujah - Jeff Buckley
  2. Wonderwall - Ryan Adams
  3. Wishful Thinking - Rupa & the April Fishes
  4. Thunder Road (acoustic) - Bruce Springsteen
  5. Hide & Seek - Imogen Heap
  6. Disintegration - The Cure (or maybe Maybe Someday)
  7. For the Widows in Paradise - Sufjan Stevens
  8. With or Without You - U2
  9. I Wanna Be Adored - The Stone Roses
  10. Pale Blue Eyes - The Velvet Underground
But then I'd still be sad not to include How Soon Is Now?, Expresso Love, something by Oasis, something by Crowded House and... OK, maybe this list needs some more work...

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