The Sound and Fury's List of Best Songs In Specific Categories That I Made Up
(deal with it)
Best Mood Song
In the Air Tonight by Phil Collins
Collins' hit song from his 1981 debut solo album Face Value has been shrouded in urban legend for almost as long as it has been on the radio waves. According to the myth, the lyrics tell the true story of how Collins witnessed a man drowning, and did not "lend a hand".
In all likelihood (and according to Collins depending on which interview you've read) the song is meant as an expression of the dark mood he was in following the failure of his marriage. The weird lyrics coupled with the brooding music and drum beat create a song that is truly moody.
Best Country Song
Folsom Prison Blues
If it's got to be country, then give me the old stuff. Despite the fact that Cash plagiarized almost word for word an earlier song by Gordon Jenkins called Crescent City Blues (look the lyrics up--it's pretty bad), I still love this song, and I will always love Johnny Cash. Rest in peace, Johnny.
Best Rock Song
Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin
I guess I just have a thing for eerie songs. Who really knows what this song is about? Vocalist Robert Plant has stated that the song was written off the cuff and that the initial lyrics are about a woman who has everything, but is ungrateful. I think the lyrics go a little deeper than that, and Wikipedia has it down that Plant was very influenced by his reading at the time, which included a book called Magic Arts in Celtic Britain by Lewis Spence. Whether this is true or not, this song's lyrics have always evoked a feeling of a distant genetic memory, the feeling of a myth that is just out of the reach of conscious comprehension.
You can make that face if you want to, but that's how I feel about it.
Best Rock Love Song That's Really Not a Love Song but is Kind of About a Weird Stalker Guy
Every Breath You Take by The Police
This is not the best Police song in the catalogue, but it is probably the most successful one. This song is mistaken by many people as a happy, little love song, but it was actually meant to be quite a bit more sinister. The lyrics are pretty clear, despite the pleasant tone of the music, and they do not describe a happy love story by any means.
Best Cheesy Song from a Film
We Don't Need Another Hero by Tina Turner
What can I say? I just like it, and the opening verse is just great!
Best R&B Song
What I'd Say by Ray Charles
Well, if this song by Ray Charles doesn't get your feet moving, then nothing will.
Best Rock Song of the Seventies that isn't Stairway to Heaven
Bad Company by Bad Company
This song is just bad ass. Inspired by the film of the same name, it is about a group of deserters who forge their names in the old west from behind the barrel of a six gun.
Best '80's Ballad
Faithfully by Journey
I dare you to disagree!
Best Celine Dion Song
No such thing
Best Eerie Lyric/Music Song
Silent Running by Mike and the Mechanics
Once again, eerie lyrics and a spooky synthesizer merge to create a thought provoking song. Is it completely coincidence that this moody song and In the Air Tonight are the product of former members of the same band, Genesis? Peter Gabriel's Don't Give Up would neatly complete this trilogy of moody songs by former Genesis members.
Best Song Overall
The Ragpicker's Dream by Mark Knopfler
My personal favorite, Mark Knopfler (former front man for Dire Straits), is a great weaver of tales within the framework of a song. This song is haunting, sad, and somehow mysterious. If you've never heard any of Mark's solo stuff, I highly suggest you run out and buy one of his albums. You will not regret it. That is unless you have no taste.
That's it for tonight, folks. Perhaps I'll do "worst of" next time.