Sunday, October 12, 2014


Cat Power
6" x 6", oil on canvas, 2014
Classic rock is one of those genres it is best to stay away from. Yet it is that music you are surrounded with all the time. The radio, the bars, at parties, it seems to be the default setting for the music of my generation. Of course, as it is with every genre, there are some great recordings out there. With classic rock they are called anthems. Let me propose a top 10 of classic rock anthems. Just out of the top of my head the following come to mind.
1. The Flaming Lips – Do You Realize?? (2002, this has to be my all time favorite)
2. Oasis – Wonderwall (1995, I like Cat Power's version the best though)
3. Led Zeppelin – Since I've Been Loving You (1970)
4. Aerosmith – Dream On (1973)
5. Steve Miller Band – The Joker (1973)
6. Adele – Rolling in the Deep (2010)
7. The Who – Baba O'Riley (1971)
8. Black Sabbath – Iron Man (1970)
9. Lynyrd Skynyrd – Free Bird (1976)
10. King Crimson – The Court of the Crimson King (1969)

That was actually pretty hard to come up with ten of them on the spot. You may notice that there is only one female performer included in the list. Most lists of classic rock songs probably don't feature any as it continues to be a rather chauvinistic genre. I've come to live by this golden rule if it comes to evaluating genres and eras of the 20th century and beyond. If there aren't too many women involved with it, it's most likely devoid of any real meaning. There I've said it! Wonderwall in the version of Cat Power was already in the bottom part of this year's list when I heard it on a Tumblr page maintained by one of my college freshman art appreciation students from Punta Gorda. A rather unlikely source I might add. Wonderwall was recorded live in the studio by John Peel for BBC radio.

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