Top Ten Albums

What qualifies? It's not easy to pick such a small number of disks from decades of music—so, I made a couple of rules to narrow things down.

1) No Greatest Hits albums; that's cheating.
2) This has to be music that, even after years, can be listened to over and over without hesitation. I love American Pie, but hey...

Nina Simone/Little Girl Blue

I NEVER tire of this album. I have been listening to it since before I was old enough to walk. I am not a big jazz fan, but this is the finest album I have ever heard. Lately, it has gotten commercial play (it has been background music for several commercials), and mention in a Bridget Fonda movie (Point of No Return). Lovely piano jazz and soft husky voice. Home of the definitive Mood Indigo.


Elvis Costello/This Year's Model

If those kids with the guns and the bad attitudes would just wallow in this a couple of times in a row and get it out of their systems, we would all profit. Elvis was much better when he was angry.



Jethro Tull/Aqualung

The first really big rock concert I ever went to was this tour. Ian Anderson at his finest.




Harry Nilsson/Knnillssonn

It is hard for me to choose a favorite Nilsson album. I ended up with this one because it went so unnoticed.




The Who/Sell Out

Tons of fun from The Who in sort of the transition between their early sound, and what pretty much became the norm-for-rock-and-roll sound. Lots of added tracks on the CD.



Randy Newman/Good Old Boys

The only thing that would have made this better would have been more of it. This is a short album. Marie is the most beautiful 'I'm drunk and pathetic' love song ever.

Update: It's now available as a 2-disc set, with Johnny Cutler's Birthday, a complete rough draft made prior to polishing it down to 'Good Old Boys', so nix that comment about it being too short...

The Beatles/Abbey Road

Really, I could have put just about any Beatles album on the list, but this one seems to hold up on repeated listening better than the others.




Cat Stevens/Teaser and the Firecat

I remember wonderful live concert footage of him on PBS special and on 'In-Concert'. Where is it now?




Squeeze - East Side Story

The Lennon/McCartney of Wry.




Mary Hopkin/Earth Song - Ocean Song

A lovely voice, and this time, she got to choose the songs she wanted to sing.