Who’s in your top 5?
Last week, while we were out at happy hour at Scott’s Grille, Ashley, Julie and I got onto the topic of the top five most influential albums of our lives. I think we got on the topic because someone mentioned something about that LivingSocial Top 5 application that has invaded our Facebook home pages.
I’m sure we spent at least an hour or more on this topic alone. Our passion for the subject probably was intensified by the beer we were enjoying.
Picking a top five anything has always been difficult for me. A list seems so… final. I think you have to be absolutely certain about the five you choose. People have told me that I could always change the list later. But if you can just change the order of the list, or substitute entries in and out willy-nilly, I think you compromise the significance of the list. In my opinion, it should be a major life decision to alter one of your lists in anyway. I know that @topherbook is with me on this one.
Anyway… here’s my top five most influential albums of my life listed in order of importance:
- Pinkerton - Weezer : This was the first Weezer album I owned, and by far the most influential album of my life. It showed me how powerful music can be and helped me through plenty of rough patches in my life. This album is probably the most important album in shaping my musical tastes.
- MTV Unplugged in New York - Nirvana : This was the first rock album I owned. Up until this point, I had been listening to stuff like Boyz II Men, All 4 One, The Fresh Prince, etc. “About a Girl” was the first song I learned on guitar, it was my first time I had been exposed to David Bowie, and their cover of “Where Did You Sleep Last Night?” was so powerful, that I can still clearly remember how it was performed even though I haven’t heard this album in over 10 years.
- Homebase - DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince : This was my first hip-hop album. And I had it on tape. It was the first time I owned an album with a curse word on it, and Summertime was probably my first “summertime jam.” During that summer, I had that track on repeat. I think this album helped influence my pop-music sensibilities.
- Dude Ranch - Blink182 : This is the first (pop)punk album I owned — I was a late bloomer, remember? I heard “Dammit” playing during the credits of Can’t Hardly Wait and I was hooked. I went out and bought the album the next day. Back in 1998, I was like a lot of other 16 year olds — hormonal, confused, lacking self-confidence — and this album seemed to speak directly to me. I felt what the band felt, and it made me feel better to know that I wasn’t the only one out there with problems.
- “Weird Al” Yankovic in 3-D - “Weird Al” Yankovic : I love Weird Al. This was the first Weird Al album I ever heard. I remember me, my sister Kristen, and my cousins @GrahmSkee and Aimee putting on a show for my parents, my aunts and my nana with songs from this album. We performed skits to the songs “I Lost on Jeopardy,” “Eat It,” and “The Brady Bunch.” I think that this album may have directly influenced how goofy I was growing up.
What are your top five most influential albums? You can interpret “influential” however you like, but for me I considered which albums affected my musical tastes, which in turn affected certain life decisions.