Bay Area Essentials

Evidently the iTunes Music Store has released a playlist of what they call Bay Area Essentials. But the people at SFGate (Joel Selvin and Aidin Vaziri) don’t agree with this list. What do you think? (from SFGate – COMPILED BY AIDIN VAZIRI AND JOEL SELVIN) THE CHRONICLE’S LIST COMPILED BY AIDIN VAZIRI AND JOEL SELVIN […]

Evidently the iTunes Music Store has released a playlist of what they call Bay Area Essentials.

But the people at SFGate (Joel Selvin and Aidin Vaziri) don’t agree with this list.

What do you think?

(from SFGate – COMPILED BY AIDIN VAZIRI AND JOEL SELVIN)

THE CHRONICLE’S LIST

COMPILED BY AIDIN VAZIRI AND JOEL SELVIN

1. I WANT TO TAKE YOU HIGHER — Sly and the Family Stone — The Woodstock anthem from the psychedelic soul rockers

2. DARK STAR — Grateful Dead — Space is their place

3. SLOW DEATH — Flamin’ Groovies — Every English punk band knew this one

4. MASTER OF PUPPETS — Metallica — Don’t have to be online to be on our list

5. BALLAD OF YOU AND ME AND POONEIL — Jefferson Airplane — Like the band itself, awful and fabulous at the same time

6. CALIFORNIA ÜBER ALLES — Dead Kennedys — San Francisco punk from the Jerry Brown era

7. YOU MAKE ME FEEL (MIGHTY REAL) — Sylvester — Cross-dressing disco straight out of pre-AIDS Castro

8. Born On the Bayou — Creedence Clearwater Revival — El Cerrito swamp rock heard ’round the world

9. Dear Mama — Tupac Shakur — Marin City’s finest; West Coast hip-hop got soul

10. Omaha — Moby Grape — Being underrated goes to the heart of being from San Francisco

11. American Idiot — Green Day — Duh

12. Black Magic Woman — Santana — Gypsy Queen — The sounds of the Mission District from a band that once mattered

13. SATISFACTION — The Residents — Smarty-pants rock deconstructionists, willfully weird, intentionally obscure

14. Down to the Nightclub — Tower of Power — Keystone Berkeley lives and the lead singer’s a killer

15. Roadrunner — Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers — The hipster’s handbook from a faux-naif

16. White Punks On Dope — The Tubes — San Francisco in the ’70s

17. We Care a Lot — Faith No More — “about the food that Live Aid bought”

18. Never Say Never — Romeo Void — Weird, wonderful, unexpectedly sexy

19. Midnight In A Perfect World — DJ Shadow — A dream built around samples and scratches

20. Freedom — Sons of Champlin — The real hippies

21. Wicked Game — Chris Isaak — Sex on the beach

22. John the Fisherman — Primus — Primus sucks

23. Living In the U.S.A. — Steve Miller Band — Somebody get me a cheeseburger

24. Loan me a Dime — Boz Scaggs — THE San Francisco blues

25. Ball and Chain — Big Brother and the Holding Company — What made Janis Joplin a star

THE ITUNES SONG LIST

1. TRUCKIN’ – Grateful Dead

2. SOMEBODY TO LOVE – Jefferson Airplane

3. PIECE OF MY HEART – Big Brother and the Holding Company

4. THANK YOU (FALETTINME BE MICE ELF AGIN) – Sly and the Family Stone

5. FORTUNATE SON – Creedence Clearwater Revival

6. OYE COMO VA – Santana

7. LONGVIEW Green Day

8. WE SHALL OVERCOME – Joan Baez

9. BLACK WATER – Doobie Brothers

10. LIGHTS Journey

11. WHAT IS HIP – Tower of Power

12. CALIFORNIA ÜBER ALLES Dead Kennedys

13. WICKED GAME – Chris Isaak

14. U CAN’T TOUCH THIS – MC Hammer

15. ROCKIN’ IN THE FREE WORLD – Neil Young

16. SUMMERTIME BLUES – Blue Cheer

17. WHERE HAVE ALL THE FLOWERS GONE – Kingston Trio

18. WORKING FOR A LIVING – Huey Lewis and the News

19. SYMPHONY OF DESTRUCTION – Megadeth

20. EPIC – Faith No More

21. MR. JONES – Counting Crows

22. PRIDE OF MAN – Quicksilver Messenger Service

23. MIDNIGHT IN A PERFECT WORLD – DJ Shadow

24. LOWDOWN – Boz Scaggs

25. CAN YOU HANDLE THAT? – Graham Central Station

I dunno. Each list has strong points. But SFGate’s list seems to have a lot more musical relevance, and has some bold picks like Romeo Void, Sylvester, the Flamin’ Groovies, and The Residents. They also have a number one I completely agree with – Sly. I can’t possibly agree with that more.

For me there’s one key point that makes these lists different, though. The iTunes list contains a counting crows song, and that automatically renders it invalid. The only significant thing about counting crows, other than the true absurdity that is Adam Duritz’ hair, is that they have a truly brilliant piano player in Charlie Gillingham; a man I’ve roadied for and who’s been at my house playing my piano. Apart from that, cc are simply crap and should not be on any list of ‘essential’ anything.

I like that the Doobies are on the iTunes list though, and that they have a Chris Isaak song, and Graham Central Station. I think a careful merge of these lists is actually a pretty damned good compilation.

[EDIT]

Ray points out that Jonathan Richman ain’t from SF, he’s from boston. So points off for that.

4 thoughts on “Bay Area Essentials”

  1. Punk would have to include The Avengers, “American In Me”.

    Hip-hop requires Digital Underground “Humpty Hump”.

    But what the FUCK are they thinking putting the Modern Lovers on there? Wrong fucking bay, dudes. The Modern Lovers are from Boston, and that song is even a song about driving around Massachussets. No connection to San Francisco whatsover. What the fuck? They might as well put Lou Reed and Willie Nelson on there too.

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