A decade ago, I wrote a series of entries ranking my favorite albums from 1985 to 2004. My collection has expanded greatly since then, particularly in the last five years. So I wanted to see what has changed in 10 years.
If my 8-year-old self were in control of this list, the soundtrack to Xanadu would occupy the top spot. The only other title he might have recognized would be Diana. And he would have questioned the inclusion of AC/DC.
David Bowie, Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)
Kate Bush, Never for Ever
Diana Ross, Diana
X, Los Angeles
Grace Jones, Warm Leatherette
Killing Joke, Killing Joke
Talking Heads, Remain in Light
AC/DC, Back in Black
Emmylou Harris, Roses in the Snow
Other favorites from the year:
The Police, Zenyatta Mondatta
ABBA, Super Trouper
The B-52’s, Wild Planet
The roots of my collecting bug are anchored in 1980.
I would bug my mom to buy me 7-inch singles. I was told I didn’t have the sufficient capacity to judge whether a full album would be worth the purchase price. My mom wasn’t about to drop cash on a set of songs if only one of them would entertain me.
So I amassed quite a lot of singles — “Tell It Like Is” by Heart, “A Lover’s Holiday” by Change, “Stomp!” by the Brothers Johnson.
I was, however, a pest about ABBA. The age of eight seems to be the right level of maturity for ABBA to sink its sugary hooks into an impressionable mind. My niece was crazy for Mamma Mia, the movie musical, right around the age I bugged my parents to get me their Greatest Hits, Vol. 2. The first volume didn’t have “Chiquitita.”
Video games interrupted my interest in music for four years, so it makes me wonder in how much more trouble I’d be today without that disruption.