On 11 February 2019 I set myself the challenging of reading 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die by Robert Dimery (ed.) and following the book’s advice to the letter. I’ve previously read 1001 Films… and started 1001 Albums… but felt 1001 Songs… would be a sensible place to start for what I have in mind here.
My challenge is to read about one song per day and listen to it (YouTube and Spotify, I need you tonight!) before sharing my own thoughts. Some songs I will love, others I’ll hate, and I’m sure there will be those that leave me perplexed but listen to them I shall.
I’ll also try, and most likely fail, to pinpoint the best song from the 1001 on offer but I’m nothing if not foolhardy. Instead of one song, I’m predicting I’ll have about 100 favourites by the end and may have to resort to a Top 10 so far to maintain any semblance of sanity.
So long as I post everyday (including Christmas) then this challenge should come to an end on Wednesday 8 November 2021. Staying with the Barney Stinson theme I am hoping that the whole experience will prove to be…
Buzzcocks – Orgasm Addict (1977)
We’re leaving the US behind, dear reader, and making our way back to the UK and heading northwards to Bolton in Greater Manchester. Formed in 1976, Buzzcocks were immersed in the punk scene but also produced music that was pop friendly, a hybrid of the two genres if you will. We join the group in 1977 and they have written what they hope will be their debut single – Orgasm Addict. Yikes!
Now, with a title like Orgasm Addict you are pretty much prepared for the song’s content before even picking up your headphones and listening. This rapid, 2-minute track has numerous verses and is about a young man named Johnny who has discovered masturbation. Not only has he discovered it, he rather enjoys it, and partakes of some self-love on a regular basis. We later hear of the many people he fantasises about ranging from girls at his school, heads of state and even a woman at the bakery that decorates cakes with robins. It’s a song reflective of many a hormonal teenager, their sexual awakening in full flow, and maturity into adulthood now on its way.
I have heard of Buzzcocks but am only familiar with the classic track, Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t). Orgasm Addict is a quick track, blistering along at a frantic pace with some heavy breathing thrown in to convey its less than subtle message. Unsurprisingly, the song was banned by the BBC, but the group would go from from strength to strength before disbanding in 1981. They reformed in 1989 and continue to this day though personnel changes have taken place in that time.
Favourite songs so far:
The Animals – House of the Rising Sun (1964)
Simon & Garfunkel – The Sounds of Silence (1965)
The Doors – The End (1967)
The Beatles – A Day in the Life (1967)
David Bowie – Life on Mars? (1971)
Rod Stewart – Maggie May (1971)
Sparks – This Town Ain’t Big Enough for the Both of Us (1974)
Queen – Bohemian Rhapsody (1975)
Pink Floyd – Wish You Were Here (1975)
Bruce Springsteen – Born to Run (1975)