I Got My Name From Rock and Roll

Brad Lindert

I’m not going to say goodbye. I’m just going to give you a list of albums, artists, and songs that have made life worth living.
Greatest Albums of All Time
4. Better Than Ezra, “Friction Baby.” It has great rock guitar lines, great pop hooks, and it just swims in the New Orleans scene. And you can’t forget their ode to mix tapes: “Rewind.”
3. Neutral Milk Hotel, “In the Aeroplane Over the Sea.” This Jeff Mangum lead album flows fast, like James Joyce set to music. This album must have been recorded on another planet with its trombones, musical saws, and distorted acoustic guitar. And the epic “Oh Comely” is a musical journey that makes McLean’s “American Pie” look like a skip through the park.
2. Tripping Daisy, “Jesus Hits Like The Atom Bomb.” This album saw the acid trippers from Texas clean up their act and make the most original – and out of the blue – album of all time. From songs about Band-Aids and watching TV to the great love song “Sonic Bloom,” this album is a journey that opens your eyes and your mind to music.
1. The Cure, “Disintegration.” When I heard the first strike of “Plainsong” I was awestruck. I didn’t know that music could sound like this. There is nothing lusher, more moving, or more emotional.
Greatest Artists of All Time
4. Stephin Merritt. Whether writing Chinese operas, scoring movies, or leading four bands, this man writes the best love songs (in fact he wrote 69 for one album).
3. Matthew Ryan. He is the most underrated artist of all time. And his debut “May Day” is an album that most people could only dream of making after years of perfecting their craft.
2. Jeff Tweedy. Besides being the leader of the best progressive band out there right now (Wilco), Tweedy also was a member of Uncle Tupelo, THE band that started the alt-country movement. He also worked with the super-group Golden Smog.
1. Tom Waits. He’s made a career out of being his own man. He’s always five years ahead of the times.
Greatest Songs of All Time
4. “Be Sweet,” The Afghan Whigs. Who thought being a jerk could make for being one of the most touching songs ever?
3. “Freckles,” Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci. I still contend that GZM actually recorded all their music in the ’70s in a log cabin far from the harsh reality that we now face.
2. “Sunken Treasure,” Wilco. “Music is my savior, I was maimed by rock and roll. / I was tamed by rock and roll. / I got my name from rock and roll.” Need I say more?
1. “2 Late,” The Cure. The greatest pop song of all time!