My final track in the Your Favorite Songs series is Taylor Swift’s ‘Begin Again,’ which showed up on both Amy and Madison’s lists. This is the final track, and second single, on Swift’s 2012 album Red.
Red is a fan favorite, perhaps because it gives equal weight to both her country roots and her shift toward pop. I placed it in the middle of the pack when ranking Swift’s albums last year.
Recently my daughter shared a tweet (or TikTok, or whatever social platform she was on) by somebody who wrote something along the lines of “what’s the greatest song ever recorded and why is it ‘Upside Down‘ by Jack Johnson?”
I get where that person is coming from. That song, from the soundtrack of 2006’s animated Curious George, is a blast of pure happiness. I could listen to it every day.
But I’ve never listened to anything else by Johnson, with the exception of a brief dalliance with his debut album, 2001’s Brushfire Fairytales.
Both Amy and Dana included Bonnie Raitt’s recording of the John Prine classic ‘Angel From Montgomery’ on their list of favorite songs. This is a stone-cold classic, no doubt.
This track appeared on Raitt’s 1974 album Streetlights, her fourth release. She was pressured by her label to work with an established producer who could give her work more of a mainstream pop sheen, as opposed to the raw blues sound of her first few albums. She agreed, but wasn’t happy about it, and the album was a critical and commercial failure.
Last week I wrote about predicting Gotye would be a one-hit wonder much to Madison’s dismay, and then seeing a Gotye song on her list of all-time favorites.
Today, history repeats itself. I left Vance Joy out of that first group of posts about future one-hit wonders, but mentioned him a few weeks later as a name I forgot to include. Madison didn’t chime in then, but she named a song by the Australian singer-songwriter on her Top 25.
I initially skipped Indigo Girls’ ‘Closer to Fine’ when picking which songs to blog about during this exploration of my readers’ favorite songs, despite it showing up on both Amy and Dana’s lists.
I simply assumed I had chosen it as a Song of the Day at some point during the past 12 1/2 years. But alas, this fan favorite and college radio hit has yet to receive its moment in the spotlight. Until today.