By Tricia Lunt, English Faculty. 

The title comes from a request made by a guest (whose name I’ve long forgotten) at one of the innumerable parties my roommates and I hosted at 136 East Norwich, our college house at The Ohio State University.  Whenever I play DJ, I abide by those immortal words.

The list below is slightly odd, and certainly doesn’t really reflect my day-to-day musical listening habits. My tastes tend toward the unpredictable. For example, I am an unadventurous eater, but my favorite cuisine is Indian, and my favorite dishes are pho and sushi. This exotic list belies the fact that I have oatmeal with raisins for breakfast every morning. Perhaps favorites require that special quality which elevates them above the mundane. Favorites are special; they command our attention. They must be heard. So, for me, the definition of a “favorite song,” means when the song is over, I want to play it again, and I often do. Maybe you will, too.

Here are just ten of my favorite songs

“Ain’t Nothing Wrong with That,” by Robert Randolph and the Family Band

I play this song during class on occasion just to destabilize my students. It is a spectacular jam with a positive message, which is nice.

Love this video, too.  

“Black Betty,” by Ram Jam

Honestly, I didn’t know the artist of this song was until I looked it up. I will forget the name, but that bass line—unforgettable.

“Delirious,” by Prince

If the velocity with which Prince begs, “Girl U gotta take me 4 a little ride up and down
In and out and around your [leg],” doesn’t do it for ya, nothing will.

*No link because Prince doesn’t do free music. Album Prince 1979 by Prince, web grab

“Everybody Knows,” by Leonard Cohen

Smoky, acerbic, and devastating.

“For Once in My Life,” by Stevie Wonder

This (faulty) syllogism essentially sums up my feelings about Mr. Wonder.

God is Love

Love is Blind

Stevie Wonder is Blind

Stevie Wonder is God

“Howling for You,” by The Black Keys

I’m a sucker for the Blues sound. As I have said at countless Black Keys concerts, their music makes me feel like my body has been transformed into warm molasses.

The hilarious music video doesn’t hurt.

“Killer Queen,” by Queen

You had me at Freddie Mercury.

“Midnight Train to Georgia,” by Gladys Knight & The Pips

I have a reasonable singing voice, and a surprising amount of rhythm, but I find it categorically impossible to sing along because Gladys Knight’s phrasing is freakishly difficult and ultimately astonishing. And as far as heartbreak goes, I’m on board.

“Rock Me Right,” by Susan Tedeschi

Oh, lordy, I heard her belt this song as the opening number on a second stage at Lillith Fair, when my world was young. She is an extraordinary musician, and, oh, that voice!

“Sweet Nothing,” by Calvin Harris featuring Florence Welch

This is my current favorite, and I’ve got the uncontrolled, thrashing dance moves to prove it.

Tomorrow morning, I will be devastated for forgetting a crucial favorite, but of the many wonders making the 21st century a marvelous time to live, at practically the moment I think of it, I am able to listen to a favorite song.

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