March 23, 2005

Because I'm Busy and I Can't Think of Anything Original Right Now

And because this blog exists at least partly to amuse and provoke my brother, and I'm pretty sure this is a topic about which he has strong opinions:

Best rock-and-roll songwriters ever: Nominate them.

(Note to all those people in the comments who keep nominating that beaky guy from The Who: It's "Townshend" with an "h." Don't know why that one gets under my skin, but it absolutely does . . . maybe because he is one of my favorite songwriters, and therefore I think it's worthwhile to spell his name right. And not that the guy ever wrote much, beyond maybe bathroom graffiti and letters to Oui, but in case it ever comes up?--It's "Daltrey" with an "e." If it looks like "paltry," you've spelled it wrong. It's worth spelling his name right because no one in rock will ever equal that scream and, also, because he's one in a long list of Diminutive British Singers Ilyka Spent Her Youth Wishing She Were Old Enough to Bang, Being Too Dumb to Realize That Her Being Only 14 Would Probably Have Been A-OK With Them, The Filthy Rotten Pigs.

Thanks, just getting that obsessive little monkey off my back.)

Tangentially related: My brother and I used to have this conversation about whether really great songwriters were ever good-looking--if you even could be a really great songwriter if you were really good-looking; was it even possible? And then I don't think we ever came up with a good example of someone who was both handsome and a really great songwriter. Debate that here, if you like. Or don't. Knowing you people, I'm betting you pick "don't." Lazy pricks.

Posted by Ilyka at March 23, 2005 10:54 PM in trivia

I had the hugest teenage crush on Daltrey. The era with the long, golden locks. Oh my. What I didn't imagine about him when....well, you know.

Posted by: michele at March 23, 2005 11:23 PM

What, you wouldn't like to help yourself to a heaping scoop of Bacharach? It's like that sweater is painted on. Mmmmm.

Posted by: Hubris at March 23, 2005 11:47 PM

well, you know.

Yeah, I know. Naturally I can't find the quote online anywhere, and naturally I can't find the book I have that mentions it, but in some interview or other he explains his open marriage with, "My missus knows I like a Y-bone steak once in awhile."

Being dense, it took me years to figure out what the man meant by "Y-bone steak." But once I did?--OH BLESS YOU, MRS. DALTREY, FOR SHARING YOUR BOUNTY WITH THE WORLD.

Posted by: ilyka at March 23, 2005 11:49 PM

What, you wouldn't like to help yourself to a heaping scoop of Bacharach?

Damnit, I knew better than to click that.

Posted by: ilyka at March 23, 2005 11:50 PM

What about Paul? Of the fab four, I mean. Wasn't he a looker when he was younger?

And Liberace...smokin!

Oh, wait. Did Liberace ever actually write anything?

Posted by: Jim at March 24, 2005 12:25 AM

Hmm, some time ago a friend of mine commented that he finds it encouraging that Nick Cave has such a huge fan base despite the fact that he's so ugly, and I just kind of stared at him with my mouth open, because I thought Nick Cave was devastatingly attractive. And the best songwriter out there, in my book.

Posted by: Moebius Stripper at March 24, 2005 02:28 AM

I find Nick Cave incredibly sexy. And one of the best songwriters EVER.

Posted by: michele at March 24, 2005 03:11 AM

I thought Nick Cave was devastatingly attractive.

He has some appeal . . . I've found a lot of odd-looking musicians attractive, including Elvis Costello and Richard Butler (Psychedelic Furs). But even I can't claim they're, like, movie-star handsome.

Jim's probably right about McCartney, but I think when my brother and I were having this discussion I was in my hate-McCartney phase, maybe.

Posted by: ilyka at March 24, 2005 03:12 AM

Bob Seger is a great songwriter. I think he could pass for handsome.

Posted by: Rob at March 24, 2005 03:52 AM

I'll also say that Justin Hayward and John Lodge of The Moody Blues could both pass for handsome in a nod to my friend, Andrea, the Music Whore.

Posted by: Rob at March 24, 2005 03:56 AM

Bob Seger . . . um . . . not really, you know, a fan. I'll grant that he's not bad-looking, if you like the lotsa-hair look.

Posted by: ilyka at March 24, 2005 05:23 AM

Meh, I don't go for movie-star attractive, anyway. I prefer guys who are tall, and thin, and of an enviable height, and who've been known to be quite handsome, from a certain angle and a certain light...

Posted by: Moebius Stripper at March 24, 2005 06:07 AM

I hardly remember when he had long hair. A more recent photo could and should be had here.

Posted by: Rob at March 24, 2005 11:01 AM

My girlfriend would totally do Ric Ocasek, Jonathan Richman, or David Bowie. Hunkeriffic dudes like Daltrey or Gilmour do nothing for her.

And lately I'm thinking Ocasek isn't given his artistic credit. I mention The Cars to people, and they remember cool videos, or a nifty New Wave look. Everyone seems to forget five number-one albums with hit singles on each -- most of which still sound fresh.

I blame VH-1, and every media outlet that couldn't wait for retro-80s to evolve naturally. The 80s died -- and then they killed it.

Posted by: jdc at March 24, 2005 08:55 PM

Sorry, but Bob Seger always gave me the creeps. In the long hair phase and now, when he looks like just another guy from the bowling alley.

And jdc - I love you for the Ric Ocasek reference.

Not that I would do _him_ I was more interested in Ben Orr in my youth.

I'd have to say that I think the members of Squeeze and Nick Lowe were most excellent songwriters. After all, I do love the sound of breaking glass.

Posted by: Margi at March 25, 2005 06:43 AM

I do love the sound of breaking glass.

'Specially when I'm lonely . . . oh Margi, you do rock.

And I also had it bad for Ben Orr. I tried to steal his solo album from jdc numerous times (I don't remember whether I succeeded or not). I still can't believe he's dead.

Posted by: ilyka at March 25, 2005 06:56 AM

What's interesting is that you can actually PROVE John Lennon was a grat song-writer. Just compare the Lennon-McCartney songs to the (much later) McCartney songs.

- The Precision Blogger

Posted by: Precision Blogger at April 7, 2005 03:15 PM