Honey White’s fearless drummer was not to be outdone by Bryn and Brian when they opined on their favorite tunes. No, Bill positively exploded with faves, so much so that this is only the first of THREE parts of his absolute absolutes:

Oh my guitarists.. this was such a cool email to send. Totally reminds me that we have not had a chat about music in a long while (or a chat of any kind for that matter) Life has been crazy lately.. I now hold 4 ASE certifications and am getting a little better at fixing the autos.. and, a lot better at building things. I’ve been doing a TON of welding, cutting, bending, grinding and just all around metal fabrication. I’m thinking about buying a welder for the house and starting to do metal sculpture.. If I think of it I’ll send you some links to cool stuff like that, that has me inspired. I am also taking more classes at SBCC besides autotech stuff.. I have entered the fantastical realm of Network Engineering and Electronics.. BUT!!

On to the matter at hand. These lists you two have compiled are awesome! So much so, that I feel compelled to do the same. I will warn you, I was procrastinating writing a paper on the top 5 operating systems and server systems in use by corporate america today so, I have QUITE the list. It is, in fact, too long, but it gets better the farther in you go..probably. The funny thing is I could have kept going and going with it, but eventually I will have to face up to my deadline. Actually,I like to think that we have moved far beyond the capabilities of triple-cd best-of compilations and now are firmly embedded in the new technologies of .mp3 and hi-bandwidth .wav files that allow for gigantic personal catalogs at the touch of a button. So my list is of perfect size, as long as you don’t go into a coma trying to finish it. If there is anything on here that you would like to experience and cannot find, let me know as I will copy it down into a small and awesomely high quality format and digitally zoom it to you free of charge!

Now onto the “you have been warned” list of Billy’s must hear songs. In no certain order they are:

1) Mad Caddies – Polyester Khakis
Long before I even thought of moving back to California I used to sit in my room and sing along to this band as loud as I could. This song is all about the struggle against conforming to the workplace and a life of normality. Naturally I identify with it profoundly. I also used to scream along to a song of theirs entitled Goleta. It’s all about a hellacious place filled with diseased people that the singer really wants to leave. I liked it then, I LOVE it now.

2) Bob Marley – Trenchtown Rock
So yes, before you go into a “oh god it’s one of these lists” feeling, of course I had to put some Bob on the list. As you all know this song sings about finding ways to combat the stresses of everyday life in poverty and oppression. In particular it speaks of music as being the only thing needed to help lift your spirits when you are down. I think Bob was onto something when he coined, “One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain, so hit me with music.”

3) The Strokes – Is this it?
So one day back in 2002 I was back in Colorado on a visit and I found a burned disc in a friends car that said simply, “Strokes”. I wondered what it could be and, as my little perverse mind naturally went to scenes of me listening to scores from a really bad porno, I popped it into the cars CD player. By the time my friend got back to the car from running inside I had listened to this song two and a half times and I had tears in my eyes. Ok so I was a little depressed anyway, but the combination of; Jules melancholy and droll tenor, Nikolai’s perfect tone and simplistic sliding bass line, Albert’s hack at it percussive guitar, Nick’s ridiculous control of retro-sounding tone, and Fab’s retro-cool and simply driving beats, made me swoon. This is not my favorite song by the group, but it is definitely the most memorable to me.

4) James Brown – The Big Payback
Ever since listening to James while tripping shrooms, in a park, in the pitch black darkness of Boulder Colorado, on a summer’s eve filled with stars, I have felt the funk. That was one heck of a run-on sentence, huh Kier? Seriously though, I started loving this song when I first saw ‘Payback’ with Mel Gibson. Then, later, when I started playing a lot of pool this song seemed to emanate from the speakers every time I had a cue in my hand. It became a song I always heard when relaxing, so naturally it is once of my favorite grooves.

5) The Descendents- Thank You
This band is definitely one of the most melodic punk bands ever. They also were basically the first band to put a song, well organized enough you could actually hear, to album that was over 185 beats per minute. In short, Milo is a ridiculously smart man and a total science geek (much like Bad Religion’s Greg Graffin), though he is somewhat of an emotionally charged romantic. This song is an ode to the bands that made him want to be a musician and love music, as is witnessed in the chorus line, “Thank you for playing the way you play!”

6) Jason Schwartzman- Ethan’s song
As you guys no doubt know and would probably attest to, Jason Schwartzman is a very under-rated actor and comedian. He is also one kick ass drummer/song writer, so naturally I like him a lot. He penned this song for the movie “slackers”, a great tale of intelligent collegiate level cheaters trying to get by in an unorthodox manner. He plays a pretty creepy roll, which he’s pretty good at, which I think anyone can identify with to an extent and I really like the humor in this one.

7) Operation Ivy- Smiling Friends
A great song from the gutters of Industrial West Oakland. This band spawned MANY great band leaders and one of the all-time greatest disappearing acts in rock, when the singer decided he was going to become a monk instead of a punk. This band hit the west coast punk scene like a ton of bricks when they meshed ska and punk together to form a very original sound. It didn’t hurt that the two guys writing lyrics were die hard reggae fans and just wanted everyone to be happy, but it definitely made for some interestingly open songs. This one is all about people who put up fake walls of bravado for their “friends” so they don’t know how unhappy they are. It really hit home in my high school years.

8) Mighty Mighty Bosstones- What Are These Noises?
This band is the stuff of legend. A motley crew of hipsters from the most impressive music school of the east coast and self taught brigands from the irish bar scene of south Boston, these guys absolutely tear up a room. After a 4 year hiatus starting in 2003 the band re-emerged to live on last year. There first show back was their “hometown throwdown” which they would do every year since 1985, playing an exhaustive set comprised of EVERY one of their songs in the first venue they ever played live in. This is the song they lead with on that night, and it’s imagery always makes me smile. It’s all about a “mad” doctor who lets the band practice their crazy music in the basement while doing his work upstairs.. only in Boston I guess.

9) The Aquabats- Pirates
In my mind, this is the most fantastic piece of story-telling via music that has ever been. Every time I would hear any mention of Bryn out at sea this is what would pop up in my head, literally. If you guys haven’t heard it, damn I have failed you. It is so ridiculously good I can credit it with getting me laid. Yes, I am serious.. after singing this song from memory to a sleepy eyed vixen I had a full on pirate lovin’ experience. This band has put out numerous little tunes that make me smile and their live show is like watching blood-lust crazed care-bears hitting each other with pillows shaped like chainsaws. yeah, like that.
I am literally beside myself with anticipation of going to see them open up for Rancid in San Fran in September.. it will be monumental ! speaking of Rancid..

10) Rancid – Radio
remember what I said about the two main lyricists from Op Ivy being heavily into reggae? The lead guitarist from that group is Tim Armstrong, a straight up gutter punk with a crazy life story and a speech impediment which is as endearing as his lyrics. I met this guy outside a tiny show at the CU campus when Rancid played for a packed Club 154 (aptly named thus because it was the name of the room in the recreation hall at CU .. AND the maximum capacity for the venue.) He was so down to earth and cool, and literally had so much love in his heart for his fellow man, it made me feel like a schmuck and gave me hope all at the same time. This song is Tim’s answer to Trenchtown Rock in a way and hints at how he used music as an escape from his abusive childhood, The chorus line simply states “Radio, Radio, Radio, when I’ve got the music I’ve got a place to go”.

11) John Farnham – Break the Ice
You know, I almost did put send me an angel on this list. The truth is, though, that I would have had to put my punk band’s cover of it cause it was so much more to me than the movie version. Break the Ice, however, literally gives me chills every time I hear it. You know a song has something if it can make a kid wanna go out and hurt himself on his bicycle for days on end. It’s another thing entirely when that same song can bring a late 20’s guy to his feet only to fall trying to do a 360. Cru Jones is Teh Aw3sUmz !

12) Kimya Dawson – Loose Lips
Ok, by now you’ve all seen Juno. If you haven’t, seriously, shame on you. It has won it’s way past Rad and Hot Rod to be my favorite movie of all time. The soundtrack has a lot to do with it too. I’ve kind of actually been on a lo-fi kick for a while now and this song couldn’t have come at a more perfect time. Go to youtube right now and listen to this amazing girl sing out her guts.. she is ridiculously cool.

13) Matt Costa – Mr. Pitiful
Ok I’m gonna put another recent find on here. This guy was one of my favorite professional skateboarders when I was in high school. Then he quit skating and started messing with music, fast forward ten years and Jack Johnson decided he wanted to be credited with the kids genius and put him on his label. This song and, honestly more so, the video is a quirky bit of awesomeness I haven’t been able to go two days without watching lately.
I’ll make this one easy for you guys.

INTERMISSION – just a short break from this list.. I told you it was long (and you’ll believe me when i tell you that it’s not even half over muahaHAHAHA). I’m still so jazzed about making electronic music over the web with you guys and I truly hope I can get my head out of my butt long enough to put something down soon.. life being what it is it may be a bit longer before I get the ability to pick up the sticks again. 🙁

…and we’ll bring him back for more, very soon!