Just spotted updates at McSweeney's feature of short essays on favorite songs by a bunch of writers. Inspired as everyone seems to be by Nick Hornby's book (which I haven't read yet) I was delighted to see Dr. Octagon's "Blue Flowers" get a writeup recently alongside more predictable choices like Everclear, Flaming Lips, Beach Boys and Beatles.
These are a lot of fun; I may do a few myself when I've got nothing else to drop. I will express a slight aggravation. A very funny essay on Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust" remarks justifiably on the bassline ("bada BUMP BUMP BUMP, badump bump bump ba-BUMP; bada BUMP BUMP BUMP, badump bump bump ba-BUMP") by the song's author John Deacon. Sure it's a great part, but come-on, could we PLEASE start giving the props due to Bernard Edwards, who got jacked by the Sugar Hill gang AND Queen?
On a more serious note, I highly recommend the piece about Todd Rundgren's "Hello It's Me". The Isley brothers made a rare mistake with their version, departing from the melancholy mood that essay author Nessa Burns Reifsnyder captures beautifully. I was a little kid when I first heard that song, but for some reason the senses of loss, confusion and weariness found in a lot of songs of the 70s found root in me even though I was years away from being able to understand their sources.