10 Songs You Need to Hear Before You Die

We all have songs we love and want to share with other people.  These are 10 songs that I think are SO good, each in it's own way, that if haven't heard them, you HAVE to.  A lot of them you probably already know, but pick one or two and go check it out on Spotify or YouTube.

BTW, this list is incomplete so next week, watch for "10 MORE Songs You Need to Hear Before You Die."

"A Day in the Life"  The Beatles

This is The Beatles' masterpiece.  It's an amazing mash-up of Paul's cheerfulness and John's creepy negativity.   There's an odd symphonic break where the musicians were told to just play and go up the scale randomly, while Paul directed them.  There's an alarm clock and at the end, a piano chord played on two pianos by all four Beatles that goes on so long that on some versions, you can hear the air conditioners on the roof at Apple Studios as it fades out.  It's melodic, it's haunting, it's creative and it's amazing.

"More Than a Feeling"  Boston

A song so amazingly beautiful that when it was new, there was a rumor the band had collectively sold it's soul to the devil in exchange for writing The Perfect Song.  The harmonies, the simplicity, the amazing high notes the singer hits.  All combine to make an unforgettable song, and my favorite song of all time.

"Some Nights"  Fun.

A song doesn't have to be old to be amazing.  This song blew me away when it came out in 2012.  The harmony, the veiled meaning, the incredible melody, even the auto tune.  The passion and the voice of the singer isn't something you hear very often.

"Ironic"  Allanis Morrisette

Just because the examples in this song are not, by definition, "ironic" at all, more coincidental or inconvenient, that's okay.  It's still an incredible song by an incredible songwriter and singer.  Don'tcha think?

"Rapper's Delight"  The Sugarhill Gang

Yes, it's simple as hell and the lyrics are stupid and funny and ridiculous.   But in 1979 when it was new, it was the first of it's kind ever to cross over to a white audience, who got to finally enjoy hip-hop on the radio between Billy Joel and Olivia Newton-John.  Not just white people, but also to the black, red, brown, purple and yelll-low.  Everybody loved this song and to this day I still know every word.  In order.

"Stairway to Heaven"  Led Zepplin

A total cliche' to have on a list like this, but for good reason.  This song really is that good.  From the soft, accoustic beginning, to the way it rocks out toward the end, then ends softly, to the weird effing lyrics and the amazing musicianship of Jimmy Page and John Bonham, this song is considered one of the greatest rock songs ever.  Maybe even THE greatest.

"Love Train"  The O'Jays

This jangly-happy, feel-good song makes it seem possible that if we all just decided to, we could get along with the entire world.  Just hop on the Love Train and our problems are solved! Well, we quickly learned that's not possible because a lot of people just don't think like that, no matter how much we want to hug them and hold their hand.  But for 2 minutes and 50 seconds, it feels like solving the world's problems is just a hug away.

"Good Vibrations"  The Beach Boys

Brian Wilson was such an amazing songwriter that eventually his talents drove him mad.  How this song can come from one person's mind, is well, mind-blowing.  It's so simple but so complex and even though Mike Love is an a-hole, he sings it perfectly.  And that pause at the end where it goes "Aahhhhhhhh!  Good, good, GOOD...Good Vibrations!"  If that doesn't give you chills, you need to check your pulse.

"Vision of Love"  Mariah Carey

Largely forgotten now, Mariahs' debut single not only showed off her amazing vocal range, it's also a beautiful song.  It's totally sway-worthy, sexy and melodic at the same time.  It took just one song to put her on the map and when you hear this song, you'll know why.

"Time Passages"  Al Stewart

Yes, I really do like this song this much!  It's beautifully written, it's sweet and sentimental, and it's very cool how different instruments take over the melody during different parts of the song.  And it reminds us all that yes, time does go by and before long you'll find yourself looking back on today with fond memories.

Oh I know, I missed at least a thousand other songs that should be on this list.  If you have one to suggest, write me at daveryan@kdwb.com on comment below!

And watch for 10 MORE songs, coming up next week!

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