I thought it would be cool to make a playlist on Spotify of my Top 10 Favorite Albums for you, and instead of just posting it, thought I would explain it to you. Now, keep in mind, this is just MY opinion, so don't come after me with the wet noodles if you don't agree. I prefer listening to albums when I listen to music, prefer to hear it in context, the way the artist intended. So, without delay, here is my Top 10 List, in order.
1. Blood On the Tracks - Bob Dylan
In my opinion, this is Dylan's masterpiece. Every song is on a greatest hits album, and for good reason. Listen to "Lily, Rosemary, and the Jack of Hearts" and tell me you can't see every scene. You can't.
2. Ian Moore - Ian Moore
Ian is a singer-songwriter and guitarist from Austin, Texas, and I came across this album totally by accident. I walked into Album Alley (remember that place?) one Friday evening and just offhandedly asked Stanley, "Anything worth a crap come out this week?" He pitched me a store demo and said give it a listen. I listened to it the following Monday at work and returned it that Monday evening to buy my own copy. Another album where there isn't a bad song on it, from the first bit of slide guitar on "Nothing" to the soul-inflected vocals and lead in "Carry On," this album totally satisfies me.
3. First Rays Of the New Rising Sun - Jimi Hendrix
The album Hendrix was working on at his death. Plus, it's a Top 10 Album list and that requires a Hendrix album, right? "Hey Baby (New Rising Sun)" is probably my fav on this album, though "Dolly Dagger" always makes me think of my friend Mitzie D.
4. Born Under A Bad Sign - Albert King
Albert King at Stax in Memphis. 'Nuff said! Listen to "The Hunter" and try to convince me Paul Stanley isn't a thief!
5. Sweet Potato Pie - Robert Cray
This is the first Robert Cray album I ever bought, and it's still my favorite. The opener "Nothing Against You" gets me going every time. So soulful and effortless is his guitar playing. If you haven't seen Robert live yet, put it on your Bucket List. You won't be disappointed.
6. Sweet Tea - Buddy Guy
Buddy recorded this album of mostly Burnside/Kimbrough covers in Oxford, Mississippi, and released possibly his best album ever. The album is dark-sounding, but it works. "Done Got Old," "Tramp," and "I Gotta Try You Girl" are good starting points.
7. My Baby Don't Tolerate - Lyle Lovett
This is my "Sunday Morning" album, you know, for when the hangover is almost too much, and you don't want something rocking, but you need something to kinda pull you into recovery, if only until the next weekend. Just go ahead and listen to the whole album. It's worth it.
8. The Bonnie Raitt Collection - Bonnie Raitt
Have I ever mentioned that I'm a sucker for redheads? Well, this one's not only a looker, but she's a picker, singer, and can shame most guitarist, regardless of gender, on slide. A couple of are Randy Newman's "Guilty" or "Louise."
9. Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs - Derek and The Dominos
Like Hendrix, every Top 10 Album List must contain either Clapton or Allman, so I just included both. Another good "Sunday Morning" album, believe it or not. You can't feel bad when it's playing.
10. Under The Wishing Tree - Charlie Sexton Sextet
This one is a rarity, apparently. I bought it used off Amazon in 2006, and paid $30 for the CD then. To me, it's that good. Tried to find the album on Spotify, but all I was able to find are the four songs from the Millennium Collection compilation. The album rocks!
Well, there you have it. My very own Top 10 Album list. This post was kind of long, so I'm guessing not many of you made it this far down. If you did, congratulations! You've been introduced to some of the albums that influence me on a daily basis. If I've managed to turn you on to something new, leave a comment and let me know.