Top 40 Songs Of My Life

So I'm ready to complete my fourth decade of life on planet earth and thought I'd offer some reflections on my time here. Today, it's about music. I have somewhat diverse tastes so this list is all over the place, but it's what I like. No real order here, so appreciate it for what it is. Here's the soundtrack of my life:

· Young Folks by Peter, Bjorn, and John This was the ringtone on my last flip phone. Catchy tune that I find myself whistling nine years later.

· Say It To Me Now by Glen Hansard Kelly and I caught The Swell Season at the Brown Theater in Louisville and Glen opened with this song with no amplification. The best from a brilliant songwriter.

· Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End by the Beatles If I have to pick something from the Fab Four, it's gotta be the end arrangement from Abbey Road.

· Ghosts by the Head and the Heart "One day we'll all be ghosts, trippin' around in someone else's home."

· In the Middle by Mat Kearney Mat's first album had a unique sound. I listened to it non-stop right before fatherhood so I have pleasant memories when I hear it.

· Home by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros More whistling. Played it for Kaelyn when I'd take her to Kindergarten.

· That’s Life by Frank Sinatra Like the Beatles, too many choices but this is my favorite Frank. "I pick myself up and get back in the race."

· Never Tear Us Apart by INXS Came out when I was in grade school. It's still epic almost 30 years later.

· November Rain by Guns N’ Roses I was a huge GNR fan. I taught myself how to play the keys for this song.

· I’ve Got Friends by Manchester Orchestra I've seen this band live five times and this is still my favorite track.

· Northern Sky by Nick Drake I was a late-comer to Nick, especially considering he died a year before I was born. Stands the test of time.

· Living on A Prayer by Bon Jovi My go-to karaoke choice. The epitome of late eighties rock.

· Like A Rolling Stone by Bob Dylan Saw him in concert a few years back and he was a shell of his former self. It still couldn't extinguish my respect of his talent

· Points of Authority/99 Problems Linkin Park & Jay-Z Mash-up of two of my favorite performers of the 2000's. It still stands up.

· Walk by Foo Fighters The best the Foo have ever produced.

· Guerrilla Radio by Rage Against the Machine They were ahead of their time.

· Where the Streets Have No Name by U2 While their latest offerings have been unimpressive, their contributions are unparalleled.

· Wake Up by Arcade Fire Not a huge fan, but they're great at producing anthems. This is their greatest.

· Lose Yourself by Eminem For some reason, I saw Eight Mile in the theater. This song redeemed his acting ability.

· Lady by Styx It's my ringtone for Kelly. My favorite 1980's big-hair band.

· Somewhere Over the Rainbow by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole Possibly one of the best cover songs in history.

· Ain’t No Sunshine by Bill Withers The vocals and lyrics combine to make a hauntingly painful song.

· Seven Nation Army by the White Stripes Finally caught Jack White in concert last year. That guitar riff will likely be popular fifty years from now.

· Tiny Dancer by Elton John I got into Sir Elton at the end of high school. He was one of a kind.

· It’s A Long Way To The Top by AC/DC Again, there's a lot of great songs to chose from but I go with the underdog anthem.

· Love Me Tender by Elvis Not a huge Elvis fan, but the wife is and this was playing during our first kiss. And, thus, it makes the list.

· Started From the Bottom by Drake I like this. Degrassi and stuff.

· Folsom Prison Blues by Johnny Cash The quintessential performance by the Man in Black.

· Kashmir by Led Zeppelin "I am a traveler of both time and space, to be where I have been."

· Start Wearing Purple by Gogol Bordello To quote Willy Wonka, "a little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest man."

· One by Metallica THIS SONG SHREDS SO HARD.

· We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions by Queen When I was in elementary school, I thought this was the most awesome song. And I still listen to it decades later.

· Even Flow by Pearl Jam True story: we want on vacation one summer in high school and the Ten album was the only cassette I took. It was that good.

· Gimme Shelter by the Rolling Stones Love the Stones. The passion in this song still gives me chills.

· The Boxer by Simon & Garfunkel This duo's harmonies are some of the best I've ever heard. While this song doesn't display it as well as others, it's my favorite S&G work.

· Buddy Holly by Weezer You can't listen to this song without smiling.

· California Love by Tupac Shakur Tupac and Dre and Englewood . . . always up to no good.

· Danny’s Song by Kenny Loggins Hearing this song is one of my earliest memories (it came out in the early 70's). It would play on WWEZ in Cincinnati, the only secular music deemed acceptable for me and my siblings.

· All These Things That I Have Done by The Killers "I've got soul but I'm not a soldier."

· It is Well With My Soul by Horatio Spafford I didn't include any worship songs in this list. It's not that I don't appreciate "church music," it's just that I love it sung by congregations; it's more powerful when sung by the family of God. The story behind the hymn is as powerful as they come. I believe Christianity is proven true not only in times of joy but in those moments of deepest sorrow. Spafford's words have always touched my heart. It'll be played at my funeral.