Radio shrapnel.

In response to a USA Today article about Blender magazine's compilation of the 50 worst hit tunes ever, Angela lists her five most-hated songs of all time:
1. "Too Shy" by Kajagoogoo
2. "Do You Really Want to Hurt Me?" by Culture Club
3. "We Built This City" by Jefferson Starship
4. "Beth" by Kiss
5. Any whiney love ballad by Tim McGraw. Just pick one. I hate them all.
Can't really argue for the artistic merits of any of those...but are they *really* the worst songs you can come up with?

The rules as expressed by Blender are somewhat arbitrary; had to be a hit, but for some damn dumb reason they excluded "I'm Too Sexy", "The Macarena", and "Who Let the Dogs Out" on the questionable grounds of intentional cheesiness, then they apparently axed the bulk of the 70s because it was too easy. So really, they just indulged themselves in a little 80s hatefest; indeed, six of the top ten (or bottom ten, if you will) date from the 80s (seven if you count Vanilla Ice. He probably stole--er, recorded "Ice Ice Baby" in 89.):
1. We Built This City - Starship 1985
2. Achy Breaky Heart - Billy Ray Cyrus 1992
3. Everybody Have Fun Tonight - Wang Chung 1986
4. Rollin' - Limpbizkit 2000
5. Ice Ice Baby - Vanilla Ice 1990
6. The Heart of Rock & Roll - Huey Lewis & The News 1984
7. Don't Worry, Be Happy - Bobby McFerrin 1988
8. Party All the Time - Eddie Murphy 1985
9. American Life - Madonna 2003
10. Ebony and Ivory - Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder 1982
Sure, they all suck--but can anyone honestly tell me any of these songs are worse than Debbie Boone's "You Light Up My Life"? Are the lyrics to "We Built This City" really any dumber than the Holy Grail of rock tunes, "Stairway To Heaven"? So off the top of my head here's my top five of the moment, with new rules: 1) had to get radio play; "hit" is is a pretty arbitrary term these days, 2) has to make me lunge for the station button like my very life depends on not hearing the rest of the song, 3) nothing off-limits.

1. You Light Up My Life - Debbie Boone, 1977
Like an ice pick in the ear. A song tailor-made for cheesy midwestern weddings. I hate weddings.

2. Me & Bobby McGee - Janis Joplin, 1971
Faux populist profundity with the added tangy zest of faux nihilism. "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose", my ass.

3. Do Ya Think I'm Sexy - Rod Stewart, 1979
This song has nothing to redeem it.

4. Last Kiss - Pearl Jam, 1999
Eddie Vedder's clench-toothed monotone does this already shitty song no favors.

5. Home Sweet Home - Motley Crue, 1985
Mawkish sentiment is ill-paired with Roman orgy excess. One or the other, guys.

No comments: