“Alone” (Heart, 1987)

So here’s a song that I pretty much ignored when it was popular. In the thirty ensuing years, I’ve warmed to it. Time + exposure, I guess. Lots of hearing “Alone” coming out of bar jukeboxes and karaoke rooms (and, I’m surprised by how many times I’ve mentioned karaoke already on this blog.)

And certainly, there’s my appreciation for Ann Wilson’s voice. Pipes are great. Being able to use those pipes to inhabit the soul of a song and deliver a convincing performance of lyrics you didn’t write? Even greater.

NOT QUITE FIVE STARS:

“All Your Favorite Bands” by Dawes (2015): This, like a solid handful of Dawes songs, has lyrics that bring a tear to my eye. What a nice thing to say to someone: “May all your favorite bands stay together”. Only a true music geek could write a lyric like that (or say it to someone else). Too bad Dawes themselves didn’t exactly heed the warning. Right before they shot the video for “All Your Favorite Bands”, their keyboardist left the group.

“Allentown” by Billy Joel (1982): A mark of a great writer is being able to make the listener care about a situation that they would otherwise have zero interest in. I have never been to, and it is likely that I will never visit Allentown, Pennsylvania (which the song was apparently not really about).

“Allentown”, which crept into my consciousness via American Top 40, feels a little like Billy does Springsteen. Billy spent the early ‘80s attempting to convince America that he was a rocker. I’m not totally sure that it totally took, but it did result in some good music.

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