LISTENING PROJECT: THE HEART OF ROCK AND SOUL: DAVE MARSH’S 1001 GREATEST SINGLES EVER MADE #739-#730

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#739 ‘Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Man” Bob Seger 1968 Capitol Billboard #17. This is the closest Seger came to making it during his dozen or so years as a local hero in the Detroit area. I am not a huge Seger fan- I have a few of his albums and he has his moments but there isn’t much to this song- On the ten singles in this installment the only ones I’d have under consideration for my 1001 list- are the Steely Dan ones. I don’t think this makes my Top 10 Seger songs.

#738 “If You Need Me”- Wilson Pickett 1963 Double-L  Billboard #64. This was Wilson’s first chart hit- he would go on to have thirty-eight Top 100 hits- he was even more successful on the R@B charts- he would only have two Top 10 hits- curiously two of the songs he is most known for weren’t big hits- Mustang Sally #23 and In The Midnight Hour-#21. He is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and deservedly so. This song wasn’t a hit but like some of his other singles-should have been.

#737 “Boogie Wonderland”- Earth, Wind and Fire with The Emotions 1979 Columbia Billboard #6. What is this song doing on any list of great singles? It is one of those songs if it was on the radio I didn’t change the station but I never found it anything but a pleasant little song- nothing to get excited about and not on my list of favorite Earth, Wind and Fire songs.

#736 “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number”- Steely Dan 1974 ABC Billboard #4. The  following two Steely Dan singles are among my favorite Steely Dan songs and both of them would most likely make my 1001 greatest hits. Those early Steely Dan singles seem to mention their time in college as subjects. Neither Walter Becker or Donald Fagen sang on the first Steely Dan-which included the great “Reeling In The Years” and “Do It Again”- singer David Palmer sang those songs. Rikki Don’t Lose That Number would be their biggest hit.

#735 “Do It Again”- Steely Dan 1972. ABC Billboard #6

#734 “Love It Like An Itching In My Heart”- The Supremes 1966 Motown Billboard #9. Dave Marsh has a lot of Supremes songs on his list-In glancing through the book though I see his highest ranked one is #375. As I have mentioned previously I am not a big fan of the group. To me their songs tend to sound the same after awhile.

#733 ” Baby What You Want Me To Do”- Jimmy Reed 1960 Vee-Jay Billboard #37. Bluesman Jimmy Reed put a dozen singles onto the Hot 100 singles chart between 1957-63 which is quite an achievement- but this is the only one which hit the Top 40. A fellow named Elvis Presley recorded two of Reed’s songs- U.S. Male and Guitar Man. Baby What You Want Me To Do is pretty good too.

#732-Memphis Soul Stew”- King Curtis 1967 Atco Billboard #33 This feels like an instrumental but actually King Curtis is vocalizing throughout the entire song describing how the instruments go- I don’t see anything in this song that merits being on any lists- it does nothing for me.

#731 ” Sea Of Love”- Phil Phillips 1959. Mercury Billboard #2. I think of this song as a movie soundtrack song- it is also a much covered song- covered from artists like Iggy Pop, Tom Waits, The Honeydrippers and others. Phil Phillips is still living- he is 92 years old. I like the song- probably doesn’t make my 1001 list though but close.

#730 “I Want To Know What Love Is”- Foreigner 1984. Atlantic Billboard #1 One of Foreigner’s better songs but what are two Foreigner songs doing on this list? Not a fan. When I think of Foreigner I think of the bad music so many liked at that time- they seemed to be a favorite.

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