The Bro Jackson song draft isn’t a six-year-old’s soccer match and yet we’ve been approaching it thus far as if there are no winners or losers. That’s horseshit and it’s about to end today because I’m calling a winner for round six. It’s Kat Gotsick and I think it’s pretty easy to see why. She picked the only artist that should be collecting royalties every time someone grows a goatee.
Now you might be sitting there wondering if I’ve completely forgotten about Michael McDonald and his iconic goatee and you would be right. McDonald is a glorified wedding singer. Bob Seger wrote “Hollywood Nights” and then proceeded to do the equivalent of the facial hair walk-off home run by growing a goatee that says “I’m a no nonsense working man’s hero. Fuck you John Cougar. Can you even grow a mustache? Now get out of my way while I weld something. Watch out for the sparks douchebag.” I don’t know if Bob actually knows how to weld, but he’s probably an honorary member of a number of local welder unions everywhere.
If I was Seger’s attorney I’d be sitting down right now and sending cease and desist letters to fake ass goatee growers like U2’s The Edge.
Dear Mr. Edge,
This letter should be considered your final notice to cease using my client’s trademark facial hair (hereinafter “the Goatee”) lest we be forced to pursue legal remedies including, but not limited to, forcibly shaving the Goatee until it is either completely gone or is at a minimum a Fu Manchu.
There are some other good artists in round six, but nobody that can beat Seger in the facial hair department. Maybe his closest competition is Willie Nelson. But when everyone assumes your beard is just laziness because you’re high all the time, that’s not going to attract too many imitators. Willie’s got nothing on Seger and the army of goatee growers that he’s inspired.
Your general managers
# 71 : J. Klein – “Fresh Prince of Bel Air Theme Song” – DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
That’s right. It’s the #71 song of all time because every single person under the age of 40 could rap it to you right now. Plus it leads to videos like this.
Show me another instance where someone performing a song that came out over two decades ago is instantly the greatest musical moment of the year. Show me another song that you would be prouder to tell your friends you saw live. Show me another song that was originally written and performed by ONE OF THE BIGGEST MOVIE STARS IN THE WORLD. You can’t, and that’s why I’m ecstatic to add this network television jewel to my team.
# 72 : K. Griggs – “Free Bird” – Lynyrd Skynyrd
I would say “Simple Man” is my favorite song by Skynyrd, but I had to pick “Free Bird” so I’d have an excuse to post this video. The greatest three minutes of comedy. Ever.
# 73 : D. Kallison – “The Sounds of Silence” – Simon and Garfunkel
This is my Greg Jennings pick. Old, safe, and probably won’t produce like I thought it would. My dad kept calling it an “absolute classic,” and it’s a great song, but there were far more exciting picks still left on the board. But sometimes you need a safe choice. Bench depth. Reliable character. No one is ever going to say this is a bad song.
# 74 : C. Marler – “No Diggity” – Blackstreet
On his Mary J. Blige blurb, Fantasy Douche spoke about the key differences between the early, post-New Jack Swing r&b singles and the mid-to-late ’90s r&b singles. What ends where is a blurry marker, but no historian disputes that “No Diggity” is the most satisfying, smooth, and karaoke-able classic from the 20th Century’s last great run of r&b. It was kind of ridiculous that the radio edit completely omitted the Dr. Dre and Queen Pen verses. Maybe because “bump like acne” was such a weak line?
# 75 : A. O’Connor – “Informer” – Snow [Auto-draft]
White Canadian rappers? Fuck Snow, I’m about J to the R O C. ROCPILE IN THIS MA!
# 76 : R. Rich – “Pull Me Under” – Dream Theater
Dream Theater is the Greg Biffle of this draft. Not a whole lot of personality, but technical skills above anything else that will be taken. The progressive metal giants have been around since the late 1980s, and not a single one of them has lost the musical chops that make aspiring musicians drop their jaws to the floor in awe. They’re the group that introduced me to metal songs that have more than two power chords repeated in rapid succession. They’re the group that proves that it’s okay to play fast just because you can, that you can make great songs that don’t have the pretensions of subjective components like “feeling.” Just because Kurt Cobain played different solos than John Petrucci because his guitar skills were shit, doesn’t mean that his pieces, with their significantly less volume of notes, are any better or more meaningful. Dream Theater is a working man’s band, a group that writes an album, tours it, and makes a new one two years later. It’s a routine that consistently produces some of the most interesting music in rock, and “Pull Me Under” started it all.
# 77 : R. Ramirez – “Maybellene” – Chuck Berry
Some important dates lifted from Wikipedia:
Fall 1953 – “Crazy Man, Crazy,” recorded by Bill Haley & His Comets, becomes the first rock and roll single to make the Billboard national American musical charts.
January 14, 1954 – First documented use of the abbreviated term “Rock ‘n’ Roll” to promote Alan Freed’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Jubillee.
February 1, 1954 – Johnny “Guitar” Watson records “Space Guitar,” pioneering reverb and feedback techniques on guitar.
July 5, 1954 – Elvis Presley has his first commercial recording session at Sun Studios in Memphis.
Fall 1954 – A cover version of Big Joe Turner’s “Shake, Rattle and Roll” by Bill Haley & His Comets becomes the first internationally popular rock recording.
In May of ’55, on his Chess Records debut single, Chuck Berry evolved his sound into a sustainable genre. Berry defined the line between r&B and rock. It took him two minutes, and “Maybellene” is still a barn burner–Cadillac races, double-timed rapping, cheating lovers, finger-lickin’ guitar solos. It was teenage wastelands presented with jarring showmanship. Fats Domino was a piano man. Bo Diddley had a cooler guitar. “That’s All Right” was just a bastard cover. “Tutti Frutti” and “Rock Around the Clock” were bigger summer ’55 hits, but you can’t really hear those tracks today and not think about milkshakes and letter jackets.
# 78 : R. Johnny – “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain” – Willie Nelson
Another shock to my system–Willie remains a free agent. This particular song resonates with me for its simplicity of chords, dressed down lyrics, and the pure joy of Willie’s voice. I suspect many will add this one to their playlist, because it’s one of the most irresistible country songs ever written.
# 79 : K. Gotsick – “Turn the Page” – Bob Seger
Two notes: First, this draft is making me realize that apparently, if a song has a chorus you can yell at the top of your lungs, I’ll move that way with my pick. Second, we’re all rock star wannabes at heart, right? Or at the very least we pass through that phase on our way to whatever we finally end up wanna-being. And so of all the “it’s hard out here” songs in the modern catalog, (“Faithfully” by Journey comes to mind, “Super Trooper” by ABBA, “Dear God” by Avenged Sevenfold just to name a few)[ref]Putting ABBA next to Avenged Sevenfold just made me giggle.[/ref] “Turn the Page” is the one that brings it all home for me. This song gives you an authentic taste of rock stardom’s gritty underside–the relentlessly rolling tour bus, the musty green room, that spot just offstage, the generic hotel rooms, the greasy food, the cigarettes, the impossibly late nights, the used up groupies–and because we so badly wanted to live it, it’s captivating. There’s real life here. Real hard life.
# 80 : D. Moskal – “Closer” – Nine Inch Nails
The Fantasy Douche pointed out on Twitter that “Closer” is one of the best strip club songs. I’m from Atlanta. Hopefully the DJ plays the entire 6:13 version next time. Ramon Ramirez said that this song was one of the greatest guitar songs of the ’90s and he can’t play the guitar at all.[ref]Moskal is confusing “Closer” with Marilyn Manson’s cover of “Sweet Dreams.” The criteria is that it was one of the ’90s most learned-on-guitar tracks during this decade, especially for newcomers. And I can play the guitar but am just not any good.[/ref] I need a new group of Internet friends . . .
# 81 : B. Hurtik – “Jesus Etc.” – Wilco
Wilco’s recently acquired rep of being the champions of Dad Rock can’t hide the fact that the band was one of the best things to come out of the late ’90s-early 2000s rock boom. Jeff Tweedy has the gift, simply put. It’s all on display here: Lyrics, smooth delivery, and a memorable melody. This song is the perfect transition for my team to get out of the ’60s and ’70s and into modern times.
# 82 : E. Strait – “Victory” – Puff Daddy + Notorious B.I.G. + Busta Rhymes
I’m in full-on rap bias mode right now so I’m steering into and making sure I get the baddest songs I can. Most people would go with “Benjamins,” but this is the superior anthem. And it doesn’t have Lil’ Kim.
# 83 : F. Douche – “Amarillo by Morning” – George Strait
“Amarillo by Morning” is a song that’s long on charm, even if it’s about the soul crushing act of chasing a dream and not ever getting there. I didn’t realize until I started heavily listening to my playlist that I picked another song, “Midnight Train to Georgia,” that covers generally the same subject. The lesson of the two songs is clear: Don’t ever try to write an uplifting song while engaged in overnight travel. But like I said, the song is long on charm as country music can be, and the voice of George Strait has the effect of taking these depressing ass lyrics and making them feel like a morphine drip.
# 84 : Fantastico – “Welcome Home (Sanitarium)” – Metallica
I’m a sucker for early metal. Like old rap, old metal has lower production value than today’s metal. Gives it a more personal vibe that I love. Nuthouses are a particularly wonderful metal premise.
The Teams Through Six of 14 Rounds
“Paradise City,” Guns N’ Roses
“Microphone Fiend,” Eric B. and Rakim
“Try a Little Tenderness,” Otis Redding
“Spacy Oddity,” David Bowie
“Let’s Get It On,” Marvin Gaye
“Welcome Home (Sanitarium),” Metallica
“Suspicious Minds,” Elvis Presley
“Layla,” Derek and the Dominos
“When Doves Cry,” Prince
“To Live and Die in LA,” Tupac Shakur
“Real Love,” Mary J. Blige
“Amarillo by Morning,” George Strait
“Billie Jean,” Michael Jackson
“Public Service Announcement,” Jay-Z
“Gimme Shelter,” Rolling Stones
“You Oughta Know,” Alanis Morissette
“Can’t Tell Me Nuthin’,” Kanye West
“Victory,” Puffy, Biggie, Busta
“Like a Rolling Stone,” Bob Dylan
“Dazed and Confused,” Led Zeppelin
“The Weight,” The Band
“Life During Wartime,” Talking Heads
“Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag,” James Brown
“Jesus Etc.,” Wilco
“Welcome to the Jungle,” Guns N’ Roses
“In the Air Tonight,” Phil Collins
“Bohemian Rhapsody,” Queen
“Only The Good Die Young,” Billy Joel
“Closer,” Nine Inch Nails
“It’s Tricky,” Run DMC
“Hotel California,” Eagles
“Comfortably Numb,” Pink Floyd
“Total Eclipse of the Heart,” Bonnie Taylor
“Have a Little Faith in Me,” John Hiatt
“Turn the Page,” Bob Seger
“Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” Rolling Stones
“Rhiannon,” Fleetwood Mac
“Scenario,” A Tribe Called Quest
“The Waiting,” Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
“Paul Revere,” Beastie Boys
“Blue Eyes Cryin’ in the Rain,” Willie Nelson
“Happiness is a Warm Gun,” The Beatles
“Worms of the Senses / Faculties of the Skull,” Refused
“Cowboy Song,” Thin Lizzy
“Ms. Jackson,” OutKast
“I Was Made to Love Her,” Stevie Wonder
“Maybellene,” Chuck Berry
“Shine On You Crazy Diamond,” Pink Floyd
“Helter Skelter,” The Beatles
“99 Problems/Points of Authority/One Step Closer,” Jay-Z/Linkin Park
“Paranoid Android,” Radiohead
“Pull Me Under,” Dream Theater
“Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell,” The Stooges
“Desperado,” The Eagles (auto-draft)
“Love Shack,” The B-52s (auto-draft)
“Thong Song,” Sisqo (auto-draft)
“Informer,” Snow (auto-draft)
“Baba O’Riley,” The Who
“Sympathy for the Devil,” Rolling Stones
“Man in the Mirror,” Michael Jackson
“God Bless the USA,” Lee Greenwood
“Circle of Life,” The non-Elton John version for some reason
“No Diggity,” Blackstreet
“Just Like Heaven,” The Cure
“Smells Like Teen Spirit,” Nirvana
“Fast Car,” Tracy Chapman
“Tiny Dancer,” Elton John
“All of the Lights,” David Kallison
“Sounds of Silence,” Simon & Garfunkel
“Hoochie Coochie Man,” Muddy Waters
“Heart of Gold,” Neil Young
“Dead Flowers,” Townes Van Zandt
“Exhibit C,” Jay Electronica
“Lawyers, Guns, and Money,” Warren Zevon
“Free Bird,” Lynyrd Skynyrd
“I Want You Back,” Jackson Five
“Cry Me A River,” Justin Timberlake
“Humpty Dance,” Digital Underground
“Hallelujah,” Jeff Buckley
“Atlantic City,” Bruce Springsteen
“Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” Will Smith