in and around the lake

“here then is my own personal pantheon, along with accompanying lists of the songs that put them there…”

Jefferson Airplane: “Let Me In,” “Come Up the Years,” and “Run Around,” Jefferson Airplane Takes Off; “Today,” Surrealistic Pillow; “Won’t You Try/Saturday Afternoon,” After Bathing at Baxter’s; “We Can Be Together,” Volunteers; “It’s No Secret,” Bless Its Pointed Little Head; “Runnin’ ‘Round This World” and “Mexico,” Early Flight

Yes, the Jefferson Airplane match up with almost anybody for me. It’s their sound that I love—the folk-rock drone, the harmonies, the fact that at their strangest, they usually managed to come up with melodies that lifted even their most pretentious songs back to life. (No argument here—they definitely knew how to get pretentious.) The Worst of Jefferson Airplane was also one of the first half-dozen albums in my collection, and that proved to be an excellent gateway into the regular-issue LPs I went on to buy a few years later. A quick ranking of the first five: 1. Jefferson Airplane Takes Off; 2. After Bathing at Baxter’s; 3. Surrealistic Pillow/Volunteers/Crown of Creation. The first two are mostly great from start to finish, the other three have strengths and weaknesses in almost equal measure. Not sure why, but I passed on Bark and Long John Silver a number of times. I wish now I hadn’t—I bet there’s at least a song or two on each worth saving. Jefferson Starship wasn’t bad; Starship was easy to confuse with Survivor, Sheriff, and Michael Sembello; happily, they seem to have called it a day before Ship ever materialized.
[record inventory, 2005-06]

Also included in Phil Dellio’s pantheon:

  • Beatles
  • Hüsker Dü
  • John Coltrane
  • Velvet Underground
  • Madonna… + dozens more

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