1) Carrie Newcomer / Before & After
Very much in the vein of Mary Chapin Carpenter, this is so much more a fall song than a summer song. If you listen closely, you'll even hear MC squared on harmony vocals.
Choice lyric: I've lived on fumes and religious corn flakes.
2) Madonna /Run
If the "Broken" demo didn't exist, it'd be the hands down best Madonna demo out there. A nice mix of William Orbit blips and bleeps with a very rocky guitar. Straight forward vocals by Madonna make this better than anything on Hard Candy. I read somewhere once that Madonna's voice is remarkable only in its familiarity and I feel like that's so true here.
Choice lyric: Don't ask me to slow down/I don't wanna go down/You won't catch me lookin' back/Coz people like me don't live like that.
3) Annie / Me Plus One
Probably my favorite song that spells (which is a post all its own), I've never cared much for most of Annie's other stuff, but this is perfection.
Choice lyric: Mrs. D, Mrs. I, Mrs. F-F-I, Mrs. C, Mrs. U-L-T. If ever there's a girl that could rock your world/Then that girl sure is me.
4) Blondie / Love Doesn't Frighten Me
My favorite song on Blondie's fanfuckingtastic new album (I like it 100 times more than No Exit and The Curse of Blondie combined), I still can't get over how little Debbie Harry's voice has aged.
Choice lyric: All this nothing is real something/It's time spent.
5) Duran Duran / (Reach Up For The) Sunrise
I have gone on record in several places that Astronaut is my favorite DD album - heresy in DD circles, I'm sure. But there simply isn't a bad song on that album and the first single is very indicative of the album as a whole.
Choice lyric: You can touch the sunrise/Feel the new day enter your life.
6) Erick Macek / Aries Man
I have my friend Bess to thank for introducing me to Erick Macek. He's kind of a cross between Jason Mraz and Eric Hutchinson and although that's kind of the last thing this world needs, his stuff really works for me. I downloaded this on a whim because of the astrology reference. Now if someone would just do a song called "Gemini Man."
Choice lyric: You gotta learn to be patient/And feel the pride/Cuz I'm an Aries Man inside.
7) Chesney Hawkes / The One & Only
Total soft spot for this song. It feels like an 80s song even though technically it's 90s. We never heard from Chesney Hawkes again, but this was enough for me. I always love a song that makes you feel good and this one does it for me. I remember listening to it during my darkest moments trying desperately to make myself believe it. And what do you know? It finally worked.
Choice lyric: No one can be myself like I can/For this job, I'm the best man.