Look, It's The "Definitive 200" Albums of All Time. Sure, If You Don't Have Ears, Absolutely.
Well, here's something sure to generate comments -- I mean, it sure as hell oughta. And, blessedly, it's local-ish enough to merit mention here: Yesterday, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame released its list of the "Definitive 200" albums of all time, and it did so with the assistance of the National Association of Recording Merchandisers and local and regional music retailers, among them Good Records and CD Source, And, yeah, there are some locals on the list: Norah Jones' Come Away With Me's at No. 27 (uh...), the Dixie Chicks' Wide Open Spaces follows close behind at No. 33, Thomas Jefferson High School grad Meat Loaf's Bat Out of Hell is perched at No. 66, the Chicks' Home finds residency at No. 100 while their Fly zips to No. 113, and coming in at No. 166 is Texas Flood by Oak Cliff's own Stevie Ray Vaughan (yes, they have spelled his name incorrectly).
These are supposed to be the records you can't live without -- the ones you're supposed to buy in order to be A Complete Music-Loving Human Being. "Complete Your Collection!" barks the Web site. But you'll pardon our refusal to do so this very moment. See, the thing's gotta be a joke, right? I mean, any "definitive" must-have-go-buy-now list that includes Creed's Human Clay, much less puts it ahead of The Clash's London Calling, isn't a best-of-anything list. This is the kinda thing I live for: a where's-so-and-so...and this-and-that...and such-and-such list that picks popularity over talent and sales figures over influence. Three Bob Dylan records made the list. And three Dixie Chicks records made the list. Yeah, I totally see that. One Creed record. One Who record. Sure, absolutely. And there's Matchbox Twenty...and, oh, no Elvis Costello or Muddy Waters or Velvet Underground. But of course. Goddamnit. --Robert Wilonsky