Rolling Stone 500 Greatest Albums

Pretty self-explanatory
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BlueChair
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Rolling Stone 500 Greatest Albums

Postby BlueChair » Thu Nov 20, 2003 1:39 pm

Kind of a silly list, as the post in the Annex implied.

Here are Elvis' positions:

98. This Year's Model, Elvis Costello
166. Imperial Bedroom, Elvis Costello
168. My Aim Is True, Elvis Costello
482. Armed Forces, Elvis Costello and the Attractions

Apparently This Year's Model and Imperial Bedroom aren't Elvis Costello and the Attractions albums. Go figure!

The full list can be found at:
http://www.rollingstone.com/features/co ... p?pid=2125

Some of the great treasures that somehow rank higher than This Year's Model:

20. Thriller, Michael Jackson
61. Appetite for Destruction, Guns n' Roses
67. The Stranger, Billy Joel
68. Off the Wall, Michael Jackson
73. Back in Black, AC/DC
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Postby noiseradio » Thu Nov 20, 2003 2:10 pm

At least they had the sense to list This Year's Model above all the other Elvis records, where it belongs. :wink:
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Postby laughingcrow » Thu Nov 20, 2003 2:12 pm

Well, Back in black is a classic album in rock history!

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Postby 10 » Mon Nov 24, 2003 4:31 am

If you are implying that Off the Wall isn't a great album, you are a little addled.

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Postby BlueChair » Mon Nov 24, 2003 9:32 am

Okay, first of all.... I'm allowed to decide for myself what albums I like and don't like.

Besides, I never said "Off The Wall" wasn't a great album (even if it isn't). I was saying that it's absurd that Off The Wall is ahead of an album like Imperial Bedroom or This Year's Model.
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Postby SoLikeCandy » Mon Nov 24, 2003 9:58 am

You know I love you, Blue, but "Off the Wall" was the bomb back in the day. In many ways, it's the last great MJ album (wasn't it also his first solo turn?). Still, it wasn't he who made it great--Quincy Jones produced it and gave it the funk it needed.

Agreed, though, Blue. EC should rank high over MJ...and Guns-n-Roses? Um, what in the fresh hell?
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Postby 10 » Mon Nov 24, 2003 3:59 pm

I am a huge Elvis fan, but whether you like it or not, Michael Jackson has been a more important figure in the music scene, and his best album richly deserves to be even higher....and higher than Imperial Bedroom I believe.....

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Postby BlueChair » Mon Nov 24, 2003 4:21 pm

Yes, but I believe the list refers to greatest albums, not most popular albums.

Why else would an album like Astral Weeks by Van Morrison be at #19 or better yet, Forever Changes by Love be at #40.

As for importance, I'd definitely say that Elvis Costello, while maybe not as successful in the pop charts, is a much, much more important figure in music. Michael Jackson has influenced very few musicians, while Elvis Costello has influenced many respectable musicians.
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Postby noiseradio » Mon Nov 24, 2003 5:59 pm

Ultimately this is just a matter of taste. Off the Wall is a pivotal record for R&B. This Year's Model for rock. This says more about which of those two genres the listener likes best than it does which album is intrinsically better. I like This Year's Model better than most records. So I'd rank it above Off The Wall. Mainly because I'd rather hear it given the choice between the two.

But I love Off The Wall. And Thriller, while less stunning, is still magnificent. I will have to disagree with something. Elvis Costello, while unarguably underrated and highly influential cannot realistically be said to have influenced music more than Michael Jackson has. How many direct rip offs of Elvis Costello have their been--I mean people who stole his whole act, note for note, his look, stitch for stich, and his singing style, howl for howl? An argument could be made that people like Joe Jackson are a bit, ummm, derivative. Certainly John Wesley Harding has done more than his share of borrowing. But apart from the 3 or 4 artists you can name who directly ripped him off, and admitting that there are dozens of other really important artists who would name EC as an influence, Michael Jackson is probably one of the top 5 most influential musicians of all time.

For better or worse, there have been dozens of direct imitators to Jackson's style. Remeber Rockwell? DeBarge? New Edition? Even Ray Parker managed to have his one hit by ripping off MJ (and Huey Lewis!). How many major artists--the ones with staying power and the ones with out--have started out wanting to be just like Mike? Usher, Justin Timberlake, That cheesehead from O-Town, Bobby Brown, Tevin Campbell, and on and on. This is just the direct rip offs, and it's a far from exhaustive list. He even influenced those who had come before him. Stevie Wonder and Lionel Richie both significantly changed their sound in the 80's to compete with michael Jackson. STEVIE WONDER! It's not surprising. Thriller remains the top selling album of all time. It's going to necessarily have had more influence than the biggest record in Costello's career. Not saying it should, but it does.

Not to mention his influence on music video, and , in turn, music video's influence on the musci promotion industry. Every video from Thriller, and most of the videos from Bad are classics. They will be watched 100 years from now. The video for Thriller will always and forever be engraned in people's minds as a highlight of their childhood. I'll go on record and say that I owned (proudly) a Thriller jacket when I was in 6th grade. Ever owned an EC jacket? Ever heard of one? The impact of MIchael Jackson on the Pop Culture landscape is immessurable. His face (all 5 of them) is instantly recognizable. And not just because of the recent difficulties. He's an icon. Elvis should be. But he isn't.

Music production has not been the same since Off The Wall and Thriller came out. For better and mostly worse, the slick polish of those two records has replaced forever the raw funk of Motown's early years. Ask someone to define R&B today, and the sound ushered in by Michael Jackson (and Quincy Jones) will be described.

The guy's place in music can really only be challenged on success level by Elvis and the Beatles. On influence level by both of them as well, with a handful of others. This doesn't even approach the influence of the Jackson 5 (who had their own cartoon...)

Case in point. When Oliver's Army plays Less Than Zero, we usually throw in some other song over the chords in the last chorus. You can sing Twist and Shout, La Bamba, GLory Days, and about a million other songs over those chords. Usually, I just go with what's on the top of my head. Friday night, I sang a couple of REM tunes over the chords. Got a small laugh. Threw a Cars song in there. Another small laugh. Then I sang a vesre of Wanna Be Starting Something, replete with "mama se mama sa mumakusa." HUGE applause. Major laughs. We were playing for a very pro-Elvis crowd. But everyone knew every word to the Michael Jackson song. And loved it.

The guy's a pedophile. I hope he goes to prison. And his music has been lame for 2 decades. But he still accomplished what he accomplished.
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Postby cbartal » Mon Nov 24, 2003 6:12 pm

Jackson has indeed influenced many more artists. Many more awful artists, that is.

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Postby BlueChair » Mon Nov 24, 2003 6:23 pm

I guess the whole debate arises.. what matters more, the quality of the music, or the person behind the music?

Michael Jackson (along with Madonna, Britney Spears, and a whole slew of other artists) matter more today because of their celebrity, and not because of their music. That's not to say their music is horrible, but is it fair to put the New York Times Best Seller of 1987 higher than Shakespeare on a list of the greatest works of literature? I think not.[/i]
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Postby noiseradio » Mon Nov 24, 2003 7:33 pm

Good point. But I'd put the Jackson 5's stuff (all of it) and Michael Jackson's 1st two albums up against most people's records, even in terms of quality. It's not the style of music I prefer. I prefer Elvis Costello, the Beatles, REM, etc. But I think he deserves his due, and for more than just record sales. After 1984, all bets are off. He's done little or nothing since then that I consider of any merit at all.

By the way, sometimes, the New York Times Bestseller for 1987 is Tom Wolfe's Bonfire of the Vanities. And I think that's about as good as literature gets. Also, to be fair, your analogy should be Shakespeare to the bestselling book of all time (since Thriller is the bestselling album of all time). The Bible is the bestselling book of all time, followed by Chairman Mao's Little Red Book and Webster's Dictionary. I'd say those were all at least as influential as Shakespeare...
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Postby 10 » Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:13 am

Michael Jackson has influenced very few??? Elvis has influenced a lot???

Holy crap....love IS blind.

I am a big Elvis fan, and not such a big Michael Jackson fan at all...in fact, I don't even own an album by him, whilst I own every EC album... but a blind man, maybe a deaf man, can hear that MJ has influenced many more than EC.

And I would say that popularity has something to do with greatness... unless you're saying that you have great taste and that everyone else in the world are tone-deaf idiots. You may very well be saying that..

I can see what you guys see in Imperial Bedroom. But I would say it is an acquired taste for the majority of the world. Off The Wall can speak to bushmen in the Kalahari.

I am in no way arguing that whatever is top of the charts is the best. And I love This Year's Model, so I'm not bothering to bring this into the argument. But I think Elvis has had a fair crack of the whip with critics through his career....I think MJ has been ripped off greater with OTW's low placement.

I think it is insane to expect the 2 albums to be reversed. I'd like to know exactly why it is absurd the way it is. What makes Imperial Bedroom so much greater?

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Postby Misha » Wed Nov 26, 2003 2:12 am

10,

I'm joining the party here...

What makes it better? Brilliant fucking lyrics and music.

While Mikey was very talented, he didn't create that monster on his own. He had men behind the curtain in songwriting and then there is Quincy Jones. Elvis had Elvis.

Considering this is an Elvis board, I have no idea why I would be biased...

Off the Wall and Thriller were landmark albums, and Elvis doesn't match in sheer numbers of the fan base....but musical talent and creativity??? HANDS DOWN...EC!

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Postby 10 » Wed Nov 26, 2003 3:50 am

I couldn't agree.

This is what's so interesting (and infuriating) about these lists....how do you explain one album's position against anothers...

..such as..the Beatles dominate the top 15-20....then they have albums down in the 2-300s...such as Help!.....so that means that there are plenty of recent stuff like Eminem and Weezer much higher than a great Beatles album....how exactly do you explain that?

But..they make these lists to piss people off.....like the list a couple of years ago in Spin, where they announced the Ramones as the 2nd most influential artists of all time......and I think the Beach Boys may have scraped in the top 40.

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Postby laughingcrow » Wed Nov 26, 2003 8:15 am

You have to say that while Elvis is easily the more diverse and talented musician, Jackson was a (stage-managed) great singer/dancer/showman and was much more appreciated.

I don't think that either of them have influenced many people directly because their styles are so distinct, noone could go and imitate them without simply 'ripping them off'. However both (maybe Jackson slightly more because of his fame) have made people want to create their own music.

Off the wall vs TYM...on musical quality very hard to judge because it's not ECs best 'music' album (like IB, Trust, KoA), though it is easily one of the most catchy/maddening. Guess at the end of the day it is down to personal choice.
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Postby Copenhagen Fan » Wed Nov 26, 2003 8:53 am

come on....everybody knows Jacko is better than Elvis....I hate the guy's music and would never buy any of his records...but he seems to have done pretty well and is much more of an influence than Elvis....one would even be tempted to say that he's much more of an inovator than Elvis.

If I use the Noize logic in determining an artist's greatness...it is clear that Jacko has influenced MANY more musicians than Elvis.....by a long stretch, not because of his greatness, but because of his success. Jacko is wacko, but he's still pretty talented....his track record speaks for itself. And Elvis' track record indicates that he's not very successful.....on a commercial scale. Now, I love Elvis and think he's the best ever....but my taste does not necessarily determine who is the best.
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Postby noiseradio » Wed Nov 26, 2003 11:15 am

Misha,

You don't like Michael's lyrics? Haow can you deny the power?:

You wanna be startin' something
You gotta be startin' something
You wanna be startin' something
You gotta be startin' something

It's too high to get over (yeah, yeah)
Too low to get under (yeah yeah)
You're stuck in the middle (yeah, yeah)
And the pain is thunder
(transcriber's note: see how he rhymes 'under' with 'thunder'? That's top drawer!)

mamasay mamasa moomakoosa
mamasay mamasa moomakoosa
mamasay mamasa moomakoosa
mamasay mamasa moomakoosa

(transcriber's note: Show me an Elvis song with made up gibberish African-esque lyrics. You can't, can you? And now the best part:)



You're a vegetable
You're a vegetable
You're a vegetable
You're a vegetable
You're a buffet
You're a vegetable
They'll eat off of you
You're a vegetable

(Transcriber's note: Where has Elvis compared his lyrical nemesis to an all-you-can-eat vegetarian smorgasbord? Nowhere, that's where.)

I think the question of lyrical superiority has been answered. The defense rests.
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Postby cosmos » Wed Nov 26, 2003 2:07 pm

SoLikeCandy wrote:You know I love you, Blue, but "Off the Wall" was the bomb back in the day. In many ways, it's the last great MJ album (wasn't it also his first solo turn?). Still, it wasn't he who made it great--Quincy Jones produced it and gave it the funk it needed.

Agreed, though, Blue. EC should rank high over MJ...and Guns-n-Roses? Um, what in the fresh hell?



Well, Appetite for Destruction was to rock music what Off the Wall was to dance/r & b at the time. Rock music had fallen from Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath in the 70's to Poison and Warrant in the 80's and was fading pretty quickly. GNR's Appetite brought a Stonesy/Aerosmith swagger back that had been missing from rock music for quite some time. It was a very important album for me, in particular, as a guitar player because it had some great guitar riffs and solos in it.

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Postby Copenhagen Fan » Thu Nov 27, 2003 4:13 am

Cosmos...very good point.....Slash is one of the most innovative guitarists around...he created a whole new sound, and G and R bridged the gap between pure heavy rock and all that other junkie Jingle Metal like Ratt and Warrant and all of the others of that time. We must remember that those Jingle Metal and Bon Jovi's along with crap like Twisted Sister and Quiet Riot ruled before G and R knocked them all off and took Rock and Roll...(real rock and roll) to Led Zep heights...(almost anyway).....very influential album,very influential band.
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Postby 10 » Thu Nov 27, 2003 6:57 am

Mmmm... it's interesting how people determine how good these songs are.

I don't think the lyrical argument is ENTIRELY relevent...I think a lot of Jackson's songs aren't necessary created for someone to lock themselves up in a room and pore over the album booklet, looking for meaning.

Those songs are designed for something else completely.

Music for me, is music. Lyrics don't get me off. I like the phonetics that some singers use...but I usually don't bother trying to listen to the lyric. Sounds funny from someone bothering to post on an Elvis Costello forum...but would you really bother listening to some abysmal tune because of the sparkling lyrics? But if there was some absolutely unbelievable tune out with the lyrics "Pommegranite....pommegranite...pommegranite" I'm sure you could overlook this.

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Postby laughingcrow » Thu Nov 27, 2003 1:36 pm

GnR suck the big one IMHO... :lol: Slash and Axl are a couple of pompous pricks.

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Voters list

Postby IStandAccused » Thu Nov 27, 2003 2:01 pm

I hope you took the opportunity to see who voted for the Top 500- it is on the last page of the issue. Among all those considered "Industry Insiders" was none other than Elvis' ex girlfriend- under the "B's"- HA!! I hear she's a Christian too... :wink:

laughingcrow wrote:Well, Back in Black is a classic album in rock history!
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Postby Copenhagen Fan » Fri Nov 28, 2003 6:54 am

LAughing Cow...none of us said they were cool......just that Slash kicks ass on guitar....not everybody can be like Clapton.
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Postby tokyo vogue » Fri Nov 28, 2003 8:58 am

Hey, I like Guns n Roses. Not everything has to be fancy and intellectual to be great.
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