Saturday, June 27, 2015

In Concert: The Rolling Stones

photo by Lance Hemenway

Venue: Arrowhead Stadium; Kansas City, MO
The Players: Mick Jagger (vocals), Keith Richards (guitar, vocals), Ronnie Wood (guitar), Charlie Watts (drums)
Opening Act: Ed Sheeran

The Set List:

1. Start Me Up
2. It’s Only Rock and Roll But I Like It
3. Tumbling Dice
4. Doom and Gloom
5. Beast of Burden (with Ed Sheeran)
6. Kansas City
7. Bitch
8. Wild Horses
9. Street Fighting Man
10. Honky Tonk Women
11. Before They Make Me Run
12. Happy
13. Midnight Rambler
14. Miss You
15. Gimme Shelter
16. Jumpin’ Jack Flash
17. Sympathy for the Devil
18. Brown Sugar


19. You Can’t Always Get What You Want
20. (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction

Seeing the Rolling Stones in concert was a mistake. I made the mistake of not bringing my son, thinking a 12-year-old couldn’t care less about a band only on his radar because of Maroon 5’s “Moves Like Jagger.” I made the mistake of joking that these septuagenarians (except for young pup Ronnie Wood – all of 68) would have difficulty commanding a stage, given the interference of their walkers, canes, and wheelchairs. I made the mistake of dismissing Mick Jagger’s a reputation as possibly rock music’s greatest frontman ever. Finally, I made the mistake of thinking it would be a good idea to go to any other concert again after this one.

I’ve seen my fair share of rock legends on stage – Allman Brothers, Pat Benatar, David Bowie, Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan, Journey, John Mellencamp, The Police, Bruce Springsteen, Styx, Roger Waters, and Yes all spring to mind. However, none came close to matching the stage presence of Mick Jagger. The man didn’t just command a stage, but an arena with his exhaustive prancing and ability to get a crowd revved up. This was not a fat cat millionaire just phoning it in.

Aside from Jagger, there were a lifetime of memorable musical moments. How does one not melt when Keith Richards launches into the arguably most famous guitar riff off all time with “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”? Who wouldn’t be moved by the choir at the beginning of “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”? How about the chops of the female singer on “Gimme Shelter” or the bass solo during “Miss You”? Hell, the final curtain call with just Jagger, Richards, Woods, and Charlie Watts bowing to their audience was tear-worthy.

So I offer my apologies to my son for not making this his first show. I apologize to the Stones for ever dismissing them as past their prime. I apologize to every other performer I’ll ever see when I say, “Well, they were good, but they weren’t the Rolling Stones.”

Thursday, June 18, 2015

The Top 50 Disco Songs of All Time

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Disco is one of the most-aligned musical genres, ridiculed for its robotic music and simplistic lyrics. However, those who rip on it for being light, trivial music miss the point: that’s what it was designed to be. It was supposed to be fun, party music and wasn’t created with the idea of standing the test of time. However, these songs exemplify how, like it or not, some of these songs have endured.

This list was created by aggregating 40 lists and compilation albums focused on disco. See sources at the bottom of the page.

1. Chic “Le Freak” (1978)
2. The Trammps “Disco Inferno” (1977)
3. Gloria Gaynor “I Will Survive” (1978)
4. Bee Gees “Stayin’ Alive” (1977)
5. Lipps Inc. “Funkytown” (1980)
6. Donna Summer “I Feel Love” (1977)
7. Thelma Houston “Don’t Leave Me This Way” (1976)
8. Rose Royce “Car Wash” (1976)
9. Donna Summer “Last Dance” (1978)
10. Donna Summer “Hot Stuff” (1979)

11. Village People “Y.M.C.A.” (1978)
12. KC & the Sunshine Band “That’s the Way I Like It” (1975)
13. Bee Gees “You Should Be Dancing” (1976)
14. Chic “Good Times” (1979)
15. KC & the Sunshine Band “Get Down Tonight” (1975)
16. A Taste of Honey “Boogie Oogie Oogie” (1978)
17. McFadden & Whitehead “Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now” (1979)
18. Bee Gees “Night Fever” (1977)
19. Vicki Sue Robinson “Turn the Beat Around” (1976)
20. Michael Jackson “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” (1979)

21. Abba “Dancing Queen” (1976)
22. Van McCoy “The Hustle” (1975)
23. Sister Sledge “We Are Family” (1979)
24. Wild Cherry “Play That Funky Music” (1976)
25. Kool & the Gang “Celebration” (1980)
26. Alicia Bridges “I Love the Nightlife (Disco ‘Round)” (1978)
27. Earth, Wind & Fire “September” (1978)
28. Evelyn “Champagne” King “Shame” (1978)
29. Anita Ward “Ring My Bell” (1979)
30. Earth, Wind & Fire with the Emotions “Boogie Wonderland” (1979)

31. The Weather Girls “It’s Raining Men” (1982)
32. Heatwave “Boogie Nights” (1977)
33. Diana Ross “Love Hangover” (1976)
34. Cheryl Lynn “Got to Be Real” (1978)
35. Patrick Hernandez “Born to Be Alive” (1979)
36. Amii Stewart “Knock on Wood” (1979)
37. Kool & the Gang “Ladies’ Night” (1979)
38. Commodores “Brick House” (1977)
39. Peaches & Herb “Shake Your Groove Thing” (1978)
40. Yvonne Elliman “If I Can’t Have You” (1977)

41. LaBelle “Lady Marmalade” (1974)
42. Blondie “Heart of Glass” (1978)
43. Donna Summer “Bad Girls” (1979)
44. Diana Ross “Upside Down” (1980)
45. Earth, Wind & Fire “Let’s Groove” (1981)
46. Andrea True Connection “More, More, More” (1976)
47. George McCrae “Rock Your Baby” (1974)
48. The Emotions “Best of My Love” (1977)
49. The Hues Corporation “Rock the Boat” (1974)
50. Village People “Macho Man” (1978)

Resources and Related Links:

Monday, June 15, 2015

6/15/2015: Tears for Fears @ the Uptown in Kansas City

image from

Tears for Fears has an ‘80s nostalgia vibe to them, considering they had their biggest hits in that decade (four top ten hits in the U.S., including #1’s “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” and “Shout”). Understandably, their show focused mostly on this output (4 songs from 1983’s The Hurting, 3 from 1985’s Songs from the Big Chair, and 4 from 1989’s The Seeds of Love). Still, I hoped for a few more songs from that era, especially “The Working Hour,” “I Believe,” and “Mother’s Talk” (the last two were even singles).

The “band’s” nineties output (1993’s Elemental and 1995’s Raoul and the Kings of Spain) were really Roland Orzabal solo efforts since Curt Smith had flown the coop. “Break It Down Again” was the only song they played from either album, although they did a cover of Radiohead’s “Creep,” which was a B-side from 1995. I had hoped for more – “Goodnight Song,” “Power,” and “God’s Mistake” were all minor singles from that time which would have been nice to see live.

The two reunited in 2004 for Everybody Loves a Happy Ending and again on the Ready Boy and Girls? EP in 2014, but neither appeared on anyone’s radar but the TFF faithful. They tackled three songs from the Happy Ending, but nothing from the EP. I was hoping for their cover of Arcade Fire’s “Ready to Start.”

All in all, however, it was a good show despite the brevity.

The Set List:

1. Everybody Wants to Rule the World 2
2. Secret World 6
3. Sowing the Seeds of Love 3
4. Pale Shelter 1
5. Break It Down Again 4
6. Everbody Loves a Happy Ending 6
7. Change 1
8. Mad World 1
9. Memories Fade 1
10. Closest Thing to Heaven 6
11. Advice for the Young at Heart 3
12. Creep (Radiohead cover)
13. Badman’s Song 3
14. Head Over Heels 2


15. Woman in Chains 3
16. Shout 2

Studio Album Discography:

1 The Hurting (1983)
2 Songs from the Big Chair (1985)
3 The Seeds of Love (1989)
4 Elemental (1993)
5 Raoul and the Kings of Spain (1995)
6 Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (2004)

Thursday, June 11, 2015

The Top 100 Songs from 2000-2009

Originally as "The Top 100 Songs of the 21st Century." Changed to a list focused just on 2000-2009 on June 11, 2015.

This list was originally posted in response to a VH1 countdown of The Top 100 Songs of the 2000s. That list and 64 others were consolidated into an aggregate DMDB list along with points in the overall Dave’s Music Database, sales figures, chart performances, and awards. It has been updated several times since.

When a title was recognized as the Song of the Year, it is noted with a code following the song. A key to the codes is at the bottom of the page.

1. Hey Ya!...OutKast (2003) DM, VF, Q, RS
2. Lose Yourself…Eminem (2002) DM, VF, SS
3. Crazy in Love… Beyoncé with Jay-Z (2003) PC, SS
4. Crazy…Gnarls Barkley (2006) DM, Q, RS, SS
5. Umbrella…Rihanna with Jay-Z (2007) DM, VF
6. Yeah!...Usher with Lil’ Jon & Ludacris (2004) BB, DM, VF, PC
7. We Belong Together…Mariah Carey (2005) BB, DM
8. I Gotta Feeling…Black Eyed Peas (2009) DM, PC
9. Poker Face…Lady Gaga (2009) DM, VF
10. Viva La Vida…Coldplay (2008) G-S, SS

11. Fallin’…Alicia Keys (2001) DM, G-S
12. Can’t Get You Out of My Head…Kylie Minogue (2001) VF
13. Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)… Beyoncé (2008) G-S, PC, RS
14. Bad Romance…Lady Gaga (2009)
15. Bleeding Love…Leona Lewis (2007) VF
16. I’m Yours…Jason Mraz (2008)
17. Low…Flo Rida with T-Pain (2007) BB
18. Boulevard of Broken Dreams…Green Day (2004) G-R, SS
19. Gold Digger…Kanye West with Jamie Foxx (2005)
20. Hips Don’t Lie…Shakira with Wyclef Jean (2006) VF

21. Tik Tok…Ke$ha (2009) BB
22. Stan…Eminem with Dido (2000) DM, Q
23. Boom Boom Pow…Black Eyed Peas (2009) BB
24. Irreplaceable… Beyoncé (2006) BB
25. Beautiful Day…U2 (2000) G-R, G-S
26. In Da Club…50 Cent (2002) BB
27. No One…Alicia Keys (2007)
28. I Hope You Dance…Lee Ann Womack (2000)
29. Need You Now…Lady Antebellum (2009) G-R, G-S
30. Music…Madonna (2000) VF, RS

31. Seven Nation Army…The White Stripes (2003)
32. Apologize…One Republic with Timbaland (2007)
33. Clocks…Coldplay (2002) G-R
34. You Belong with Me…Taylor Swift (2008)
35. Empire State of Mind…Jay-Z with Alicia Keys (2009) SS
36. Just Dance…Lady Gaga with Colby O’Donnis (2008)
37. Use Somebody…Kings of Leon (2008) G-R
38. You’re Beautiful…James Blunt (2005)
39. Love Story…Taylor Swift (2008)
40. Hero…Enrique Iglesias (2001)

41. Yellow…Coldplay (2000) NME
42. Hurt…Johnny Cash (2003)
43. Get Ur Freak On…Missy Elliott (2001) RS
44. Hot in Herre…Nelly (2002)
45. Sexyback…Justin Timberlake (2006) PC
46. Take Me Out…Franz Ferdinand (2004) NME, Q
47. How You Remind Me…Nickelback (2001) BB
48. I Kissed a Girl…Katy Perry (2008)
49. Toxic…Britney Spears (2004)
50. Hung Up…Madonna (2005)

51. Rehab…Amy Winehouse (2006) G-R, G-S, Q
52. Whenever, Wherever…Shakira (2001)
53. Dilemma…Nelly with Kelly Rowland (2002)
54. Big Girls Don’t Cry (Personal)…Fergie (2007)
55. Bad Day…Daniel Powter (2005) BB
56. Foolish…Ashanti with Ja Rule (2002)
57. Mr. Brightside…The Killers (2004)
58. Complicated…Avril Lavigne (2002)
59. Don’t Know Why…Norah Jones (2002) G-R, G-S
60. Where Is the Love?...Black Eyed Peas with Justin Timberlake (2003)

61. Lollipop…Lil Wayne with Static Major (2008)
62. Promiscuous…Nelly Furtado with Timbaland (2006)
63. Hey, Soul Sister…Train (2009)
64. Stronger…Kanye West with Daft Punk (2007)
65. Lady Marmalade…Christina Aguilera with Lil’ Kim, Mya, & Pink (2001)
66. Ms. Jackson…OutKast (2000)
67. Hey There Delilah…Plain White T’s (2007)
68. Bring Me to Life…Evanesence with Paul McCoy (2003)
69. Don’t Cha…The Pussycat Dolls with Busta Rhymes (2005) VF
70. Hot N Cold…Katy Perry (2008)

71. Since U Been Gone…Kelly Clarkson (2004)
72. Without Me…Eminem (2002)
73. Hollaback Girl…Gwen Stefani (2005) PC
74. Love Song…Sara Bareilles (2007)
75. Halo…Beyonce (2008)
76. Jesus Walks…Kanye West (2004)
77. I Bet You Look Good on the Dance Floor…Arctic Monkeys (2005) MJ, Q, RS
78. Girlfriend…Avril Lavigne (2007)
79. Not Ready to Make Nice…Dixie Chicks (2006) G-R, G-S
80. Telephone…Lady Gaga with Beyonce (2009)

81. My Humps…Black Eyed Peas (2005)
82. Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning…Alan Jackson (2001)
83. Before He Cheats…Carrie Underwood (2005)
84. Beautiful…Christina Aguilera (2002)
85. So What…Pink (2008)
86. Crank That (Soulja Boy)…Soulja Boy Tell’em (2007)
87. Unwritten…Natasha Bedingfield (2004)
88. Sex on Fire…Kings of Fire (2008)
89. Live Like You Were Dying…Tim McGraw (2004)
90. Wake Me Up When September Ends (2004)

91. Independent Women…Destiny’s Child (2000)
92. This Love…Maroon 5 (2002)
93. Be without You…Mary J. Blige (2005)
94. The Reason…Hoobastank (2003)
95. Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)…Train (2001)
96. A Thousand Miles…Vanessa Carlton (2002)
97. Bubbly…Colbie Caillat (2007)
98. Get the Party Started…Pink (2001)
99. Fireflies…Owl City (2009)
100. Last Nite…The Strokes (2001) NME, Q

Songs Which Won Year-End Awards But Didn’t Make the Top 100:
  • 99 Problems…Jay-Z (2004) RS
  • American Skin (41 Shots)…Bruce Springsteen (2000) SS
  • Cha-Cha Slide…Mr. C the Slide Man (2000) PC
  • Cupid Shuffle…Cupid (2007) PC
  • Dance with My Father…Luther Vandross (2003) G-S
  • Daniel…Bat for Lashes (2009) NME
  • Daughters…John Mayer (2004) G-S
  • Fell in Love with a Girl…The White Stripes (2001) MJ
  • Fire…Kasabian (2009) Q
  • Golden Skans…Klaxons (2007) NME
  • Hanging by a Moment…Lifehouse (2000) BB
  • Heavenly…Patty Griffin (2007) SS
  • Here We Go Again…Ray Charles with Norah Jones (2004) G-R
  • Hounds of Love…Kate Bush (2005) NME
  • I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow…The Soggy Bottom Boys (2001) SS
  • Maps…Yeah Yeah Yeahs (2003) NME
  • A Moment Like This…Kelly Clarkson (2002) PC
  • Moment of Surrender….U2 (2009) RS
  • Over and Over…Hot Chip (2006) NME
  • Please Read the Letter…Robert Plant & Alison Krauss (2007) G-R
  • Roc Boys (And the Winner Is)…Jay-Z (2007) RS
  • The Scientist…Coldplay (2002) Q
  • Senior Twilight Stock Replacer…The Fall (2008) Q
  • Sometimes You Can’t Make It on Your Own…U2 (2004) G-S
  • Time for Heroes…The Libertines (2002) NME
  • Time to Pretend…MGMT (2008) NME
  • Walk On…U2 (2000) G-R
  • We Can’t Make It Here…James McMurtry (2005) SS
  • Who Let the Dogs Out?...The Baha Men (2000) PC
  • Work It…Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott (2002) RS

Key to the Codes:

Friday, June 5, 2015

Ben Harper @ Grinders - Crossroads in Kansas City

image from

Prior to this concert I knew three Ben Harper songs – “Steal My Kisses,” “Diamonds on the Inside,” and “With My Own Two Hands.” I tend to pick my concerts based on acts which I know backwards and forwards. I also couldn’t have told you much about Harper. I’d have guessed his age at about ten years younger than he is (45) and his discography to be about half what it is (12 studio albums). My buddy Paul didn’t know much more about Harper, but talked me into going. I’m glad he did.

While the old man in me craved a chair by the encore, I was certainly not bored by the music. Harper and the Innocent Criminals were versatile performers who clearly enjoy their jobs. They incorporated reggae, ear-piercing guitar rock, acoustic folk, alternative, and even elements of prog-rock. Harper frequently changed out guitars and was generous with highlighting the band, which included multiple – and well-deserved – choruses of cheering and applause for the lively percussionist.

The set list ignored the last five albums, but that makes sense considering that this is the Innocent Criminals’ reunion with Harper after a seven-year layoff.

The Set List:

1. Better Way 7
2. Brown Eyed Blues 5
3. Excuse Me Mr. 2
4. Ground on Down 2
5. Diamonds on the Inside 5
6. Masterpiece
7. Don't Take That Attitude to Your Grave 1
8. Burn to Shine 4
9. The Woman in You 4
10. Steal My Kisses 4
11. Roses from My Friends 3
12. Gold to Me 2
13. Amen Omen 5
14. The Will to Live 3
15. Mama’s Trippin’ 3
16. With My Own Two Hands 5


17. Walk Away 1
18. Another Lonely Day 2
19. There Will Be a Light 6
20. Oppression 2
21. She's Only Happy in the Sun 5
22. Burn One Down 2
23. Glory & Consequence 3

Studio Album Discography:

1 Welcome to the Cruel World (1994)
2 Fight for Your Mind (1995)
3 The Will to Live (1997)
4 Burn to Shine (1999)
5 Diamonds on the Inside (2003)
6 There Will Be a Light (with the Blind Boys of Alabama, 2004)
7 Both Sides of the Gun (2006)
8 Lifeline (2007)
9 White Lies for Dark Times (2009)
10 Give Till It’s Gone (2011)
11 Get Up! (with Charlie Musselwhite, 2013)
12 Childhood Home (with Ellen Harpe, 2014)