Well, I was going to take a pass but got caught up with some of the other great OS selections, so, pretty much in the order in which I heard them:
1. Camelot – I was a kid but was bowled over by the witty lyrics, the sublime melodies and the voices of Julie Andrews and especially Richard Burton. It gave me a taste for the Broadway musical and for Burton.
2. Twist and Shout - The Beatles – Well, I hadn’t heard anything like this before and I fell in love.
3. Best of Fats Waller – Turned me on to that speakeasy style of jazz, the delight he took in playing and Fats’ sly sense of humor. Hard to name a favourite track – This Joint is Jumping, Ain’t Misbehaving, Two Sleepy People, Your Feet’s Too Big – I liked them all.
4. Rubber Soul – The Beatles – Well, I hadn’t heard anything like this before. A big step forward from Twist and Shout in just a year and a half. Songs like In My Life, Girl an Norwegian Wood stay with me to today. Not a weak cut on the album.
5. Bob Dylan’s Greatest Hits – This may have been the first LP I bought. Mom bought the first four. I’d already liked what I’d heard on the radio and on very limited funds, I took the Greatest Hits route. Bob didn’t lose out on the royalties though as I eventually bought the LPs the hits were culled from and later, the CDs. Favourite on this album was The Times They Are A-Changin’.
6. Lightfoot – He’d been writing and touring for a few years before he could get a record contract so his first album is basically a greatest hits. To wit – That’s What You Get For Loving Me, In The Early Morning Rain, The Way I Feel, I’m Not Saying, Rich Man’s Spiritual, Steel Rail Blues and Ribbon of Darkness.
7. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band - Well, I hadn’t heard anything like this before. A big step forward from Rubber Soul in just a year and a half. It’s probably still my favourite album. Perhaps it was repeated listenings at a formative age but the album just flows so well that hearing the songs out of order is uncomfortably disorienting. Favorite songs are being For the Benefit of Mr. Kite, Good Morning and A Day in the Life.
8. Sticky Fingers – Rolling Stones – I’d long been a Stones fan from the time I first heard Heart of Stone. This album, which I slightly prefer to Let It Bleed, just seemed to be them at their best. Faves are Wild Horses, Cant’ You Hear Me Knocking and Moonlight Mile.
9. Woodstock – This album summed up the 60s for me. The film was great but the number of sparkling live performances was even better. Plus, it showed the variety of music on display. Co-favorites were The Who’s See Me, Feel Me and Santana’s Soul Sacrifice. Strong honorable mentions to Richie Havens (Fields of Concord and Freedom), Ten Years After (I’m Going Home) and Hendrix (Star Spangled Banner). Other great performaces were Country Joe, Arlo Guthrie, Sly and the Family Stone, John Sebastian and even Sha-Na-Na. Peace and love.
10. Dark Side of the Moon – Pink Floyd – It opened up a whole new range of music for me. I hadn’t appreciated how ambitious rock music could get and, like Sgt. Pepper’s, the album just seemed an integrated whole. Well-written lyrics too. Fave tracks are Time and the closing trilogy of Any Colour You Like, Brain Damage and Eclipse.
11. Hank Williams Greatest Hits – The Hillybilly Shakespeare. I’d enjoyed some country crossover hits like Ring of Fire and El Paso and had heard some enjoyable covers of Hank Williams songs. So I took the plunge. It took me a few listenings to really like it as at first the style, or the sound seemed too repetitious. But I quickly became a big fan and enjoy him to this tad. Faves were I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry, Honky Tonkin’ and Why Don’t You Love Me.12. H.M.S. Pinafore – The album, D’Oyly Carte version of course, that made me a fan of Gilbert and Sullivan. They were as popular as the Beatles in their day, about a century before the Fab Four. Their witty satires of the British class system backed up by gorgeous melodies have kept them popular to the present. Who among anyone’s lists will still have clubs and societies devoted to them 100 years hence?
13. Innervisions – Stevie Wonder – His big breakthrough album that captivated everybody I knew. It added a whole new sounds to the mix with fabulous hits like Living For the City, He's Missta Know-it-All and Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing. A glorious Latin/soul/funk mixture.14. History of The Clash – These guys showed everyone that punk was more than noisy, destructive anger. I saw them more as a great rock band working in the punk genre. London’s Calling, Rock the Casbah and The Magnificent Seven are among their classics.
15. Legend – Bob Marley – The artist who brought a whole new sound to music everywhere. Marley combined political awareness with captivating rhythms. No dour rebel, Marley’s love songs (e.g. Is This Love) were among his most popular. My fave was Jamming.