To quote Rob Gordon, “I’m feeling kind of basic today.” Not to mention tired. It’s been a fantastic weekend full of wine, women, and song (but mostly song), late nights, early mornings– because it’s in my genes and because i’m a bit of a sadist– and the week’s looking good ‘n long ‘n busy with no signs of letting up. And that’s all right by me.
I’m also honestly intrigued and curious about the concept of a mix derived from only such material. Say what you will about the need for going deep and understanding an album as the sum of all of its parts– side one, track ones set the tone for what’s to come, giving them the power to make or break whatever album experience you were hoping to have. Whether you’ve been lured to the record by the wildly successful single you’ve heard on the radio all week and are hoping to hear more of the same, or, as is more often the case these days, you stumbled upon the artist through related artist categories on your streaming music player of choice– that first song will determine whether you’re in it for the long haul or jumping ship by side one, track one, minute two.
And heaven help you if you believe that having that shiny new single on there as the pivotal track one is enough to carry you through an otherwise bland and colorless record. There’re definitely some examples of where it works, and likely a few of the following tracks will be among those examples, but generally speaking, if you’re leading off with your barnburner of a single, you better believe with all your soul and down payment on your yacht in Maui that the rest of your album is sold gold. Nay, diamond platinum.
With this in mind, I humbly submit my Top 5 Side 1, Track 1s.
1. Mike Doughty – Looking At The World From The Bottom Of A Well
Haughty Melodic – ATO, 2005
Starting off with a fantastic example of a side one, track one that, although being the first single from Doughty’s 2005 album, not to mention his first solo major label release (ATO), serves as a nice warm up for the rest of the record. In fact, as strong a song as it is, greater depth and all-around wonderfully hearty sonic goodness is still to come in the tracks that follow. Continue reading Monday Mixtape – Top 5 Side 1, Track 1s