An extra post today! No one tagged me for this, but I saw this on Dave’s blog and thought I’d do it anyway.
As someone whose earliest memories include sitting in front of Top of the Pops and the Chart and being filled with awe and wonder (there’s a great photograph of me when I was about three, watching Barry Manilow with rapt adoration), music has always been a big part of my life. My teenage years meant that every Wednesday was NME and Melody Maker day and wages from any part time work was calculated in terms of how much music I could buy with it. My walkman was my closest friend, with John Peel a close second and I was always taping something. 7.30pm was gig o’clock and I always went to see the support band too.
On conversion, I felt that certain types of music might not be exactly liked, but I was horrified to find out the was a major opinion that music was actually haraam. They might as well have declared my own feet to be haraam.
As the years have passed, I have vacillated between listening and not listening. I know that if I listen to too much music, it distracts me spiritually. I don’t yearn to have music on all the time anymore. I prefer to listen to the occasional song that I really like and enjoy it and may Allah forgive my shortcomings.
With that in mind, here are my seven songs with You Tube Links:
David Bowie – Golden Years. Forever a hero for his role in Labyrinth, aka One of The Best Films Ever, this song is just so groovy. I hope he sings it to Iman when they’re at home.
Lee Dorsey – Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky. How can you argue with a title like that? Native Deen or someone should do a version called “Everything I do gonna be sunnah”. That would be great.
Bob Marley and the Wailers – Stiff Necked Fools. When I was ten, I dug around in my Dad’s music collection and found the Confrontation album. My ears had never heard anything like it before. This was the first album I truly loved and I still love reggae and ska to this day. With someone as iconic as Marley, it’s easy to forget just how talented they actually were. Beautiful lyrics and music. “The lips of the righteous teach many/But fools die for want of wisdom”.
Gregory Issacs – Black a Kill Black. A stunning lament from the Cool Ruler. Sadly just as relevant today as when it was written 30 years ago. The link is to an Mp3 site where you can hear the song for free, the site design is a tad herbacious though.
Queen – Lily of the Valley. Another treasure from my Dad’s record collection. Sheer Heart Attack is the first Queen album I ever heard and it’s still my favourite. A lot of nonsense is said about Queen being a singles band, but any actual Queen fan knows this isn’t true. Sadly, I only started listening to Queen in 1990 and I was soon to be heartbroken (I cried for three days straight) by Freddie’s death. Due to Freddie’s Iranian roots, Queen were one of the few Western bands permitted in Iran, until Ahmedinejad took power. As soon as I heard that, I knew no good would come from his rule. As a side note, it annoys me greatly how people rant about the state of pop culture in Muslim countries. I’d say poverty, corruption and illiteracy are far bigger problems then Nancy Ajram. Anyway, here is a beautiful song featuring one of the greatest voices in Western music, if not ever.
Modest Mouse – Satin in Coffin. Modest Mouse are one of those bands, I’ve heard about but never heard. I heard this song in a tv advert and had to do some googling and I couldn’t believe it was them. Thundering song, with a great turn of phrase and a bassline which is half menacing/half Dolly Parton 9-5.
U2 – Angel of Harlem. Lots of people’s memes have featured Coldplay, a band so terrible I’d have to swear in Scottish slang to emphasise the depth of my disgust. For me, my Apple Corp running dogs of choice are U2. This is not my favourite U2 song by a long way (that’s probably The Fly), but for some reason, it’s been in my head lately, so here it is.