Firstly, I'm to admit I got it wrong. I did think about it a lot, and I was always pretty comfortable with my choice of Over the Rainbow as the greatest song of all time, but I also wished at the time that my answer was a little bit more interesting, a bit more likely to prompt the response "yes, I hadn't thought that, but that rings true". Maybe this is a bit more like it.
I didn't get it far wrong, mind. Number 7 has become Number 1. The feeling's been growing throughout the year. It's come up on my ipod a few times recently, it's been featured in an excellent BBC4 documentary, it's somehow become obvious to me. It's Brian Wilson's favourite song. Boom-ba-boom-ch, boom-ba-boom-ch ... you know the one ... Be My Baby.
Now, the one thing that ever so slightly irks me about this being the greatest song of all time is that it rather caters to the argument that this rock'n'roll is all about the 3 minute thrill, the sonic rush, appealing to the heart, the soul, the hips, but not the brain so much. Be My Baby lyrically is, unavoidably, a little banal. But, really, fuck it! It's so flawless, it's sound is so thrilling, it doesn't let up for a second, the vocal, the drum, the chorus, the backing vocal, it still sounds so modern, it's a joy to everyone under the sun, able to memorably define two very different classic films, Mean Streets and Dirty Dancing.
It's the perfect song, the perfect song of all perfect songs.
Talking of which ... this is a tape called Perfection.
It's a certain kind of perfection, of course. The sweet spot.
- Be My Baby - The Ronettes
- Billie Jean - Michael Jackson
- Oh Boy - Buddy Holly
- Gimme Some Loving - The Spencer Davis Group
- Shining Light - Ash
- Going Underground - The Jam
- (Love is Like a) Heat Wave - Martha and the Vandellas
- Umbrella - Rihanna
- Fun, Fun, Fun - The Beach Boys
- Johnny B Goode - Chuck Berry
- The Rat - The Walkmen
- Crazy in Love - Beyonce
- Dancing Queen - ABBA
- Good Times - Chic
- Family Affair - Mary J Blige
- Yes - McAlmont and Butler
Find me a spare second in any of those song ...
This is a tape called ...
Girls Groups other than the Spice Girls
Be My Baby - The Ronettes
Remember (Walkin' in the Sand) - The Shangri-Las
Throw Shapes - The Pipettes
Love in the First Degree - Bananarama
No Scrubs - TLC
Bills, Bills, Bills - Destiny's Child
Love Child - The Supremes
Pure Shores - All Saints
Jimmy Mack - Martha and the Vandellas
Will You Love Me Tomorrow - The Shirelles
Don't Let Go - En Vogue
Push It - Salt n Pepa
Trouble - Shampoo
All the Things She Said - Tatu
Biology - Girls Aloud
Please Mr Postman - The Marvelettes
Pretty basic stuff, really ... see how many tapes demand to be kicked off by Be My Baby