When Bad Songs Happen to Good Artists-The Led Zeppelin Edition

I love the band Led Zeppelin.  But sometimes, it is difficult for me to wrap my brain around the fact that the same band who did epic songs like Dazed and Confused, Stairway to Heaven, and Kashmir also did Fool in the Rain.

I suppose I should be grateful that they decided to make a quasi-samba record instead of completely selling out and making a disco record like so many rock artists did in the late 1970s (I’m talking to you Rolling Stones, KISS, and Rod Stewart).   But it doesn’t make this song any easier to take.    I’m all for bands being creative and experimenting.  When it works, it’s wonderful.  When it doesn’t work, then it’s a disaster.  This song is the latter.


Ms. Ann O’Malley’s iPod Playlist From Hell-The Debbie Downer Edition

Like herpes, bad pop songs are the gift that just keeps on giving.  These were especially written to harsh your buzz.

Today we focus on songs that make you want to start taking anti-depressants.

Peter McCann-“Do You Want To Make Love?”

Forgiving the fact that the singer looks like he should be a Will Forte character on Saturday Night Live, I’m having trouble getting past what he is asking her.  I do realize that the singer is giving her an ultimatum of sorts, but taken out of context, what he’s asking sounds really crass.

Michael Martin Murphy-“Wildfire”

This song is depressing.  There is a line in here about “Oh, they say she died one winter/When there came a killing frost”. Who is she, the horse or the girl, and are they made of tender vegetation?

Speaking of equines…

America-Horse With No Name

Another popular choice for many a bad songs list and my list is no exception.  This is one of the most depressing songs ever written. ‘Nuff said.

“Summer Breeze”–Seals & Crofts

Most depressing song about summer ever.  The lyrics are not really all that depressing.  It’s the tune that brings you down and harshes your buzz.

“Shannon”–Henry Gross

I want to know if there was a segment of the recording industry that was on permanent downers in the 1970s, because that would explain why someone thought that a song about someone’s dog being caught in the tide, washing out to sea, and eventually dying would make a good pop song.

And last, but not least…

“Alone Again (Naturally)” by Gilbert O’Sullivan

Most. Depressing. Song. Ever.  By the minute-thirty mark, I’m longing to treat myself with a visit to a nearby tower.  And if I’m still feeling sour by the two minute thirty mark, I will throw myself off of it.

When Bad Songs Happen to Good Artists-The Beatles Edition

I know it’s popular to bag on this Beatles song, but I’m going to jump on the bandwagon and bag anyway.  The song in question is Revolution #9, from The White Album.

This song is just plain awful.  It’s not artsy.  It’s the musical equivalent of a hoarder’s house: chaotic, messy, and uninhabitable (or in this case, unlistenable).

Ms. Ann O’Malley’s iPod Playlist from Hell

I am a music nerd.  No, I take that back.  I am a music connoisseur.  I have an undying appreciation for a good piece of music.  Frequently you will find me sitting at the computer and writing, or sitting in my chair and knitting, or taking my usual lap or two around the park with ear buds planted in my ears and listening to my mp3 player.  Music helped me endure some of the worst times in my life.  Good music is like good food or good wine or a good book.  It can give you pleasure, it entices your senses, enhance a mood, or just make you happy.

Then there’s the bad.  There are the songs that are so awful, they not only make your ears bleed, but they can scar and traumatize you for life.   If I had to create an iPod play list from Hell, these are the songs that would be on it.   I think some of these songs violate the Geneva Convention’s rules on the use of torture.  If they don’t, then they should.

For some reason, most of these songs were popular in the 1970s.  Good Taste slept through the decade.  Plus I think that downers and copious amounts of Peruvian Marching Powder fueled what passed for creativity during those ten years of darkness.  The members of my generation were small and very impressionable children during this period of time who were exposed to these songs on the radio and on television.  If you have ever wondered why Generation X (by definition, people currently in their mid to late thirties and early to mid forties) are the way that they are, then wonder no more.

There were some obvious bad songs I did not include in this post, not because I think they’re actually good, but because there was nothing witty nor clever I could say about them that hasn’t been said already.

More after the jump…