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500 Albums Essential to a Happy Life


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A while back I came across this list compiled by Elvis Costello of "500 albums that can only improve your life." It's 18 years old, so you won't find anything current, but then, who cares?

https://www.vanityfair.com/culture/2000/11/elvis-costello-500-favorite-albums

Obviously, the list reflects Mr. MacManus's tastes, so it may not all be your cup of tea, but I can honestly say I've enjoyed everything I've listened to so far. From Television's marvelous debut album to the Bulgarian State Radio and Television Female Choir (which is a revelation), the list is full of surprises and absolute treasures. This morning I am listening to Coleman Hawkins's Body and Soul, and I wonder how it is that I've lived 53 years without ever hearing this amazing sax player. 

Anyway, I know a lot of people here love music. If you're interested in expanding your musical horizons, I recommend this highly. I initially skipped around a bit, but I decided to go alphabetically. Between Youtube and Spotify I've been able to find pretty much everything on the list. I've been listening for months, and I'm still in the Hs, so it's going to take a while to get through the whole thing. 

Edited by jkwilliams
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15 minutes ago, Walden said:

Thanks for this link jkwilliams, I am a huge music fan and I love finding new stuff to listen to...IMO, Spotify is the greatest invention of the 21st century. I will definitely be checking this out

I hope you enjoy it as much as I am. 

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44 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

A while back I came across this list compiled by Elvis Costello of "500 albums that can only improve your life." It's 18 years old, so you won't find anything current, but then, who cares?

https://www.vanityfair.com/culture/2000/11/elvis-costello-500-favorite-albums

Obviously, the list reflects Mr. MacManus's tastes, so it may not all be your cup of tea, but I can honestly say I've enjoyed everything I've listened to so far. From Television's marvelous debut album to the Bulgarian State Radio and Television Female Choir (which is a revelation), the list is full of surprises and absolute treasures. This morning I am listening to Coleman Hawkins's Body and Soul, and I wonder how it is that I've lived 53 years without ever hearing this amazing sax player. 

Anyway, I know a lot of people here love music. If you're interested in expanding your musical horizons, I recommend this highly. I initially skipped around a bit, but I decided to go alphabetically. Between Youtube and Spotify I've been able to find pretty much everything on the list. I've been listening for months, and I'm still in the Hs, so it's going to take a while to get through the whole thing. 

The list is obviously a joke.  Any serious attempt at a greatest albums list would begin with Eric Clapton's magnum opus, Derek and the Dominos "Layla and Assorted Other Love Songs."

 

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3 minutes ago, ksfisher said:

The list is obviously a joke.  Any serious attempt at a greatest albums list would begin with Eric Clapton's magnum opus, Derek and the Dominos "Layla and Assorted Other Love Songs."

Like I said, not everyone's cup of tea. My list would be pretty different from his, but the point of it is to listen to music I wouldn't choose and expand my horizons. And the introductory essay is some great writing. 

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Thanks for the recommendation! Looking forward to listening. I've heard Body and Soul before, but don't know where. Maybe a movie? It's a good one. :) 

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1 hour ago, Robert F. Smith said:

A great list, including Bob Dylan, Astrid Gilberto, and Richard Wagner, but where is Joan Baez, Michael Buble, or Dooley Wilson ("As Time Goes By")?  A lot of listening pleasure left out . . .

Everyone has their own favorites, of course.  I'm sure I haven't heard of many of the albums on the list, nor of all the artists.

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Sure, not everyone's favorites will be represented here, I could easily come up with my own list of 100 greatest albums that would differ greatly from this.

Considering that this list was published in 2000, following are a few of my own recommendations for best albums since 2000...

Alabama Shakes.....both of their albums "Girls and Boys" and "Sound and Color" are equally fantastic

Houndmouth...."From the Hills Below the City" and "Little Neon Limelight", again, equally fantastic

Modest Mouse...."Good News for People Who Love Bad News"

Radiohead....."Kid A"

The Strokes...."Is This It"

The White Stripes...."Elephant"

Kendrick Lamar...."To Pimp a Butterfly"

Chris Stapleton...."From a Room Volumes 1 & 2"

My Morning Jacket...."Z'

Heartless Bastards...."Arrow"

 

Share your favorites from the 2000's or before

 

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