The Fifth Element #46 Final Thoughts


Thanks to all!

The Appendix that follows lists the winning songs without their proponents' comments and with no alternates, first by multiple mentions and then alphabetically by songwriter.—John Marks

Appendix: 5 Great Art Songs of the Rock Age
The 12 Winning Lists

Arranged by Multiple Mentions, and then Alphabetically by Songwriter

In choosing the winning lists, I tried to focus only on the quality of the lists, disregarding as much as I could speculation about what selecting one list would mean for the statistical distribution of songwriters on the winning lists as a whole.

I am glad to say that now that I have sliced and diced it all separately and then thrown it all into a pot and stirred, the results to appear to be as statistically robust and representative as any such venture can hope to be. ie, The Beatles, together and separately, account for 10% of the picks (6 out of 60); Bob Dylan 5% (over-generous in my estimation but probably on a par with wider opinion); and Joni Mitchell, Procol Harum, Simon and Garfunkel, Randy Newman, Bruce Springsteen, and Peter Gabriel all with two picks each.

The 39 other songs represent 39 different songwriters.

The Beatles:
"In My Life" (2 mentions); "Yesterday;" "A Day in the Life;" "Here Comes the Sun" (Harrison); "Working Class Hero" (Lennon).

Bob Dylan:
"If You See Her, Say Hello" (2 mentions); "Every Grain of Sand."

Joni Mitchell:
"Big Yellow Taxi;" and "The Hissing of Summer Lawns" (with John Guerin).

Procol Harum (Booker and Reid):
"A Whiter Shade of Pale" and "A Salty Dog."

Simon and Garfunkel:
"Sounds of Silence;" "The Boy in the Bubble" (Paul Simon).

Randy Newman:
"In Germany Before the War" and "Sail Away."

Bruce Springsteen:
"The Promised Land" and "Growin' Up."

Peter Gabriel:
"In Your Eyes" and "San Jacinto."

All The Rest: "Alfie," Burt Bacharach and Hal David
"Doctor Wu," Becker and Fagen
"Ay Caramba!," Natty Bo
"One," Bono and U2
"Hounds of Love," Kate Bush
"This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)," David Byrne
"Halley Came to Jackson," Mary Chapin Carpenter
"Suzanne", Leonard Cohen
"My Father," Judy Collins
"All This Useless Beauty," Elvis Costello
"Sunny Goodge Street", Donovan
"L'Homme Qui N'Avait pas de Maison" by Lara Fabian and Jean-Felix Lalanne
"The Ballad of Lucy Jordan," Marianne Faithfull
"Silver Lining," David Gray
"Midnight in Paris," Michael Hurley, et al
"Scarlet Begonias," Hunter and Garcia
"Gimme Shelter," Mick Jagger and Keith Richards
"The Farthest Lights," Freedy Johnston
"We Walk On," Tonio K/John Keller
"The Modern Adventures of Plato, Diogenes and Freud," Al Kooper
"The Last Time I Saw Her," Gordon Lightfoot
"Do What You Have To Do," Sarah McLachlan
"Vincent," Don McLean
"Whispering Pines," Manuel and Robertson
"Crystal Ship," Jim Morrison
"Joanne," Mike Nesmith
"Summer's Cauldron," Andy Partridge
"Heroin," Lou Reed
"Ghost," Emily Saliers
"Hockey," Jane Siberry
"The Same Sad Smile," Jules Shear
"In a Small Moment," Carly Simon
"Father and Son," Cat Stevens
"Another Grey Morning," James Taylor
"1952 Vincent Black Lightning," Richard Thompson
"Behind Blue Eyes," Pete Townshend
"Waiting Around to Die," Townes van Zandt
"Eye of the Hurricane," David Wilcox
"Can't Find My Way Home," Steve Winwood