My XM Playlist

Yesterday was Mike Marrone’s fiftieth birthday.  And he had the idea that I should substitute for him on the Loft.  So, when I was at XM two weeks ago, we created six hours of programming.  I couldn’t turn on the radio yesterday until about four, an hour after I started, but when I pushed the button on my boombox, I was shocked.  Because it was my choices.  And then me, coming over the airwaves.

Now Mike has got 13,000 plus songs in his library.  And I was rushing to catch a plane.  So, I quickly picked tracks.  After hearing myself I was so elated that I fired up my Inno and recorded what was left of my show.  People always ask me what I listen to, well, here you go.

1. "Over My Head"
Fleetwood Mac

They say it’s about Stevie Nicks, I’ve always been in love with Christine McVie.  She’s more accessible.  And when she sings about being in love, I feel like it could be me.

2. "White Ladder"
David Gray

I don’t think he’s equaled this effort on his last two albums, but the album from which this is the title track is enchanting.  Not just the hit "Babylon", but stuff like "My Oh My" and "Silver Lining".

3. "Never Stop"
Jackson Browne

From "The Naked Ride Home".
I like Jackson when he’s acoustic.  But this album is more rock.  But the heartfelt lyrics and groove here, if you’re a fan of his DOWNLOAD THIS!  There’s a change almost all the way through that will not only put you through the bends but will connect you with everybody you’ve ever been in love with.  It’s just that magical.

4. "A Long Time, A Long Way To Go"
Todd Rundgren

The best Runt song ever.  All the talent, all the beauty, encapsulated in just over two minutes.

5. "New York Tendaberry"
Laura Nyro

I’ve been meaning to write something about "Save The Country" for weeks now.  Not only where is the antiwar protest, where are the PACIFISTS?  But that’s a rocker, and this is so intimate and vulnerable…  There’s heart in this that you’ll never ever see on television or in the movies.

6. "Sixty Years On"
Elton John

"Take Me To The Pilot" got me hooked on Elton.  But all these years later it’s "Sixty Years On" and "The King Must Die" I keep listening to.

7. "Seasons"
Steve Miller

Hearing this track on DeepTracks in January 2003 sold me on XM.  You think Steve Miller is the dittymaster?  Then you haven’t heard THIS!  EXQUISITE!

8. "Heart Of The Night"

Funnily enough, Poco didn’t have hits until all the key frontmen were gone.  Even the SUBSTITUTE frontmen, like Timothy B. Schmit.  Great looping groove here.

9. "Isn’t Always Love"
Karla Bonoff

Well isn’t it always love that makes you hang your head
And isn’t it always love that makes you cry
And isn’t it always love that takes the tears away
And you wouldn’t have it any other way

Unknown by today’s generation, but not forgotten by we who bought her debut Columbia album.  Truth and vulnerability.  Better than any Ronstadt record, a MUST HAVE!

10. "This Is Us"
Mark Knopfler/Emmylou Harris

I can’t burn out on it!

11. "Hide and Seek"
Howard Jones

The best song off his debut.  So quiet, so meaningful.

12. "Today"
Jefferson Airplane

So beautiful as to almost not believe it’s real.

13. "Jeannie’s Diary"

The most played song in my iTunes library, presently at 225 complete spins, never mind iPod plays.

I don’t have a chance at writing the book
I just want to be a page, in Jeannie’s diary
One single page

14. "Magazines"
Duncan Sheik

My favorite song by him.  Heard it first on the Loft.

15. "Baby Come Home"
J.D. Souther

Mike believes "Black Rose" is the best singer/songwriter album of 1976.

If you could trust me
Try to believe me
Listen to me when I say
When I say that love is a burning fire
And it will not fade away
No it will not fade away

You can break up with them, but you can never forget them.

16. "Between A Laugh And A Tear"
John Mellencamp

Best song he ever did.  With Rickie Lee Jones duetting.  Really, "Scarecrow" was as good as the Springsteen albums of those years.

17. "Give Me An Inch"
Robert Palmer

You never hear this on the radiio anymore.  This sold me on him, so smooth, so sexy.

18. "Drawn To The Rhythm"
Sarah McLachlan

From BEFORE she made it.  Magical.

19. "The First Cut Is The Deepest"
Rod Stewart

The definitive version, even better than the Cat Stevens original.

20. "The Road"
Danny O’Keefe

You probably only know the cover on Jackson Browne’s "Running On Empty".  You’ll LOVE the original.

21. "Bitter Creek"

I could do a whole post on this.  I believe I have.  Oh, what a middle of the desert late at night feel.  OH PEYOTE!!

22. "Sand In My Shoes"

The second most played track in my iTunes library, with 205 spins.  But really, number one, since "Sand In My Shoes" is 4:59 and "Jeannie’s Diary" is 3:37.
Don’t dismiss Dido.  Buy "Life For Rent".  It’s every bit as good as the singer/songwriter albums of the seventies.
When you hear Dido sing "But I want to see you again" you’ll feel that pitter-patter in your heart you get when you fall in love.

23. "Real Life Ain’t That Way"
Jay Ferguson

Heard first on the Loft.  This is the kind of song you can play ALL DAY!  Kind of a cross between Pablo Cruise, the Doobie Brothers and Chicago.  A sax, but so much rock energy.  The kind of chorus Journey popularized, but here, without Steve Perry’s bombast, you feel so ALIVE!

24. "I Am So Ordinary"
Paula Cole

Forget the hairy armpits.  Forget the hits.  This is from the debut.
Maybe you’re self-confident, but for the rest of us who’ve felt we weren’t good enough…

And when your mother came to boston you disappeared
And then I saw you three together
I guess she makes the best impression
With her charming femininity…

25. "Oh Yeah"
Roxy Music

If you haven’t heard this, your life is lacking.

26. "Dirty Work"
Ian Matthews

A cover of Steely Dan’s truly most famous work.  Not as good as the original, but such a great song.

27. "One Man’s Ceiling Is Another Man’s Floor"
Paul Simon

Have you played "Rhymin’ Simon" recently?  Talk about HOLDING UP!

28. "Carolina Day"
Livingston Taylor

Remember when we bought every album with "Taylor" on it?
Brings me right back to September 1970.  And I LIKE IT!

29. "Carolina In My Mind"
James Taylor

The original, from the Apple debut.  With an elation as opposed to the remake’s contemplation.  Makes you feel so ALIVE!

30. "Riding On A Railroad"
James Taylor

As I said on the show, I put the CD in an endless loop.  This, "Machine Gun Kelly" and "You Can Close Your Eyes".
We are sailing away on a river to the sea, when I hear this I believe you and me HAVE met again.

31. "I Used To Be A King"
Graham Nash

We didn’t expect much of Willie.  But he put out the best debut solo album of the three.  Doesn’t quite hold up, but I still love this song.

32. "I Don’t Know Where I Stand"
Joni Mitchell

She gets the concept so right it’s almost CREEPY!  Do they love you or don’t they?  Will you ever be able to fall asleep?  Or will you have to debate it ALL NIGHT?  You need them, do they need you?

33. "Diamond In The Rough"
Shawn Colvin

Second song, the one that hooked me on the advance tape, from my favorite album of the nineties, even if it did come out in the fall of ’89.

34. "My Thanksgiving"
Don Henley

Nobody has heard this, it’s like Henley’s "Inside Job" never came out.  But it did just as baby boomer acts could no longer get airplay, just tour.  And if they did happen to get airplay, it wasn’t with rockers.  I LOVE THIS!

35. "Hearts In Your Eyes"
The Records

Forget the first album and "Starry Eyes", the second is where it’s at!  With the girl in the golden disc!

36. "Thirteen"
Big Star

Won’t you let me walk you home from school
Won’t you let me meet you at the pool
Maybe Friday I can
Get tickets for the dance
And I’ll take you

Won’t you tell your dad, get off my back
Tell him what we said about "Paint It Black"
Rock and roll is here to stay
Come inside where it’s okay
And I’ll shake you

Won’t you tell me what you’re thinking of
Would you be an outlaw for my love
If it’s so, well, let me know
If it’s no, well, I can go
I won’t make you

36. "Motel Blues"
Loudon Wainwright III

A live version cut at XM.

In this town television shuts off at two
What can a lonely rock & roller do
Oh the bed’s so big and the sheets are clean
And your girlfriend said that you were 18
The styrofoam ice bucket is full of ice
Come up to my motel room treat me nice

I don’t wanna make no late night New York calls
And I don’t wanna stare at them ugly grass mat walls
Chronologically I know you’re young
But when you kissed me in the club you bit my tongue
I’ll write a song for you, I’ll put it on my next L.P
Come up to my motel room, sleep with me!

There’s a Bible in the drawer don’t be afraid
I’ll put up the sign to warn the clean-up maid
Yeah there’s lots of soap and there’s lots of towels
Never mind them desk clerk’s scowls
I’ll buy you breakfast, they’ll think you’re my wife
Oh come up to my motel room, save my life
Come up to my motel room, save my life

37. "Last Night Of The World"
Bruce Cockburn

Also cut live at XM.
With this song, and this song only, you could travel a continent for a MONTH!

38. "Big Sky Country"
Chris Whitley

The track that built his reputation.

39. "She Talks In Stereo"
Gary Myrick

Remember that guitar sound??!!

40. "Really Wanted You"
Emitt Rhodes

I wanted to play "Love Will Stone You", but this will do.

41. "Streetlife Serenader"
Billy Joel

Buy Billy’s "Songs In The Attic", it will convince you that he’s not a sap.  I only knew this from that live album.  Then I discovered the original, which has got a street corner feel, but rocks.

42. "The King Must Die"
Elton John

Here’s that other Elton track.

43. "Stranger In A Strange Land"
Leon Russell

When you dropped the needle and heard this opening track on Leon’s second solo album, your draw dropped.  Where did he get that voice?  And when everybody but the kitchen sink comes in at the end you’re completely OVERWHELMED!

44. "What Now America"
Lee Michaels

Once again, where are the antiwar protest songs of today?

45. "So Far Away"
Carole King

So far away
Doesn’t anybody stay in one place anymore?

46. "You Can Sleep While I Drive"
Melissa Etheridge

Melissa has become a caricature of herself, but this song has got the lesbian on the run in her secret universe vibe DOWN!  To the point where it doesn’t matter whether you’re gay or straight.

47. "Sossity, You’re A Woman"
Jethro Tull

You might not believe it, but thirty five years ago, Jethro Tull was an arena act that went clean everywhere.  Nothing else sounded quite like Tull, the exotic intimacy, like reading a Sherlock Holmes story.

48. "$1000 Wedding"
Gram Parsons

The song that stuck out on his second solo album, which I bought after he died, when the reviews were so good.

49. "Wasted Time"

So you can get on with your search, baby
And I can get on with mine
And maybe someday we will find
That it wasn’t really wasted time

Why the Eagles are the biggest selling band in history, why they sell out every venue.  You might think it’s about the hits, but it’s the truth in the album tracks.  When you go to a show and Henley sings these lines every other baby boomer looks up into the sky and sings along, thinking of all the heartbreak and breakups they’ve endured.  And wondering if they’ve gotten it right, if they’ll ever get it right.

50. "My First Night Alone Without You"
Bonnie Raitt

I play this after every breakup, after every woman moves out.  Positively creepy.

51. "For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her"
Simon & Garfunkel

They say that "Waterloo Sunset" is the most beautiful song ever written.  It’s no prettiers than this.

52. "A Pirate Looks At Forty"
Jimmy Buffett

The bedrock that allows Jimmy to get 110% of the gross.
It’s this song that enraptured his hard core.

I’ve done a bit of smugglin’
And I’ve run my share of grass
I made enough money to buy Miami,
But I pissed it away so fast
Never meant to last
Never meant to last

53. "Your Turn Now"
J.D. Souther

My favorite song from "Black Rose"

The moon was yellow
And the sky was cool
The night can make you a promise of love
Or it can make you a fool


How would anybody know it
If the real thing shined
We’ve seen so many movies
You’d probably think it was a line

54. "What Can I Say"
Pousette-Dart Band

I wanted to play "Freezing Hot", but I couldn’t find it!

55. "Hollywood Ending"
Brian Vander Ark

My last song before I took off on that jumbo jet for my hometown, tinseltown.
Meawhile, I just want to write about one more song, that played before I fired up my Inno.

"20th Century Man"
The Kinks

The way this blends acoustic and electric elements, it could almost be a Zeppelin song.  From a skiffle beat to pure rock, this has got THE energy of rock and roll.  This is one of the many reasons Ray Davies is a god.

Ain’t got no ambition, I’m just disillusioned
I’m a twentieth century man but I don’t wanna be here
My mama said she can’t understand me
She can’t see my motivation
Just give me some security
I’m a paranoid schizoid product of the twentieth century

That’s who I am.  I don’t think I fit into this modern world.  But when these tracks come out of the speakers, the unfiltered ones, not the ones written to advertise the wares of corporations, I feel like I fit in.

One Response to My XM Playlist »»


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  1. Comment by silverlake | 2006/06/22 at 11:07:31

    Wish I had heard this on XM. Usually am listening to The Loft most of the time, but was busy yesterday. I am 63 and can relate to this playlist a lot. Thanks for the memories, Bob. Am trying to get all these cuts on CD so I can listen anytime.

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  1. Comment by silverlake | 2006/06/22 at 11:07:31

    Wish I had heard this on XM. Usually am listening to The Loft most of the time, but was busy yesterday. I am 63 and can relate to this playlist a lot. Thanks for the memories, Bob. Am trying to get all these cuts on CD so I can listen anytime.

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