Saturday, 16 August 2008


Thanks to Mrs Blogs - of Mrs Blogs blogs fame - for showing me where to find the full list of the 8 booklets in the Guardian's great lyricists series. I'd got 7 out of the 8 booklets, and was going to muse as to who else should have been included in there, but couldn't do that without knowing who the missing no. 8 was - or potentially looking rather foolish. (Old hat now, I know, but that's what recess is for - catching up on those things you meant to do but didn't have time. And it puts off the moment I have to start reading that Larry Elliott book I'm supposed to be reviewing).

The Guardian went for: Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Patti Smith, Chuck D, Morrissey, Joni Mitchell, Alex Turner and Leonard Cohen. I'd definitely have gone for Dylan, but different songs; definitely Alex Turner (ditto); and Chuck D probably deserves it too. But as for others, I'd have gone for Gil Scott-Heron, Jarvis Cocker, Stephen Malkmus, Ian Curtis, and... someone from the Motown stable - can't decide between Smokey Robinson, Eddie Holland or Barratt Strong; how do you choose between You Really Got a Hold on Me, Bernadette and Heard it Through the Grapevine? OK, you could argue it's the amazing vocals that make the songs, not the lyrics, but lyrics don't have to be 'clever-clever' to be great.


Glenn Vowles said...

Nick Drake's lyrics are great, especially on the 'Way to Blue' album.

Kerry said...

Never listened to Nick Drake. Always assumed it was rather fey 'if there's a bustle in your hedgerow' navel-gazing hippy stuff.

I've just Googled him. He has a song called 'Phaedra's Meadow'. I'm going to take some convincing!