We've lost a lot of legends already this year: Muhammad Ali, Gordie Howe, David Bowie, and Prince - just to name a few. When Prince passed it occurred to me that nearly all of the top recording artists of the 1980's were gone - Prince, Michael Jackson, and Whitney Houston could be considered the "Mount Rushmore" of 80's music (along with Madonna, of course.)
David Bowie transcended time and space and gender and genre. I never considered myself a Bowie fan, but upon his death I gave his catalogue a closer listen and realized what millions of music fans already knew - the man was bloody brilliant.
So many talented musicians have gone to The Great Gig In The Sky that comprising a Dead Artists Playlist only took about fifteen minutes. (note: I only counted a band if its lead singer is dead.) Here are twelve of my favorite tracks from artists who are no longer with us. To save space for my OMFG reveal I linked the videos on this playlist rather than embedding them.
Queen & David Bowie - "Under Pressure"
I'm really feeling this song lately, what with all the madness in the world.
The Notorious B.I.G. - "Big Poppa"
Classic hip-hop track from my junior high days. Biggie > Tupac.
Michael Jackson - "Beat It"
You've heard the original. Now play the Fall Out Boy version:
I said I wasn't gonna embed songs on the playlist. Technically, this isn't ;-p
John Lennon - "Imagine"
Such a pure, beautiful song.
The Doors - "Light My Fire"
I like the music a lot more than I like Morrison. Blasphemy, I know.
The Clash - "London Calling"
I wrote a musical comparison in college, comparing The Clash to Green Day.
Joy Division - "She's Lost Control"
My intro to the post-punk icons and one of my all-time faves.
Prince - "When Doves Cry"
There will never be another Prince. Maybe the most versatile pop star ever?
Stone Temple Pilots - "Trippin On A Hole In A Paper Heart"
I was never an STP fan, but nearly all of their songs were decent to good.
Sublime - "Santeria"
My (wife's) family's favorite sing-along song.
Nirvana - "Breed"
Due respect to "Smells Like Teen Spirit", but this was always my fave Nirvana track.
Now, the answers to my 'like list' guessing game. We'll do this countdown style...
#10 Anna Kendrick - actress
Fierce little thing. She reminds me of my crush in a way that I can't quite describe.
#9 Julianne Hough - dancer/actress
Can't act to save her life but she seems like a sweetheart. And those legs...
#8 Kathryn Tappen - TV personality
"K.T." anchors hockey coverage for NBC (and she's married to a former New Jersey Devil.)
#7 Katherine McNamara - actress
The youngest member of my 'like' list. Her hair is quite literally fire.
#6 Victoria Justice - singer/actress
Less trashy than her contemporaries. And less famous. Hmm...
#5 Olivia Munn - actress
I ship her and Aaron Rodgers. (Partial credit if you guessed Olivia Wilde; I do love Thirteen.)
#4 Heidi Watney - TV personality
What, none of you watch Quick Pitch? (Can't blame you for guessing Heidi Klum though.)
#3 Kristen Bell - actress
The voice of Anna is a long-time veteran of the 'like' list. Dax is one lucky bastard. (I ship them, too.)
#2 Taryn Southern - YouTube Star
Sam knows what's up. Not as famous as that 'other' T.S. but much hotter and funnier.
#1 Jennifer Lawrence - actress
The reigning queen of this list five years running (but Taryn's coming for her crown.)
Who are your celebrity crushes? What's your favorite song from an artist who has passed away? Any suggestions I may have missed (for either list?) Let me know in the comments below!