A little over a year ago, I posted my top 100 singles of all time, but without the context of an introduction to each song, the general wonderfulness of each track will have been lost. So I’m going to repost the list – one by one – explaining exactly why I think each song is so excellent.
I wanted to make a positive out of a negative. Wallace Wylie’s column over at Collapse Board about hateful, ultra-misogynistic rap made me wistful for the gentler hip-hop tunes I loved as a kid.
I was never much of a rap fan, but of course there were plenty of tracks I liked. Gangsta rap has never appealed: despite my pretensions, I’m not really middle class. I didn’t grow up in the ghetto – and of course I’m white and British – but you have to be very comfortably removed from crime and poverty for it to seem glamorous, or so entrenched in it that you don’t even think about getting out.
The rap songs I liked growing up were about regular, everyday stuff I could identify with: love, relationships and loud music. Continue reading →