Friday on My Mind: Best Opening Songs!

The Morning Show w/ John Richards
05/02/2014
John Richards

It’s time again for Friday on My Mind. Our weekly blog post where we look at videos centered around one common theme. This is a collaborative effort between KEXP and King 5 News.

Yesterday and today during The Morning Show,all opening song tracks have comprised the entire 6am-10am time slot. Albums can be completely made or broken by how awesome or crappy the first song may be. The importance of an album-opening track must not be underestimated. The first cut can either reel listeners in or turn them off. Some of rock's greatest songs are leading songs, and the albums they open are among the biggest of all time. Most of the greatest artists understand this and have showed listeners what’s what with their first song. And now here are a just a few of the very many best opening songs....Michael Jackson - Don’t Stop Till You Get Enough

Off The Wall was released by Michael Jackson in 1979 and was his first time out on Epic Records as opposed to Motown. This was the first Michael Jackson song where he made lots of screams and squeals throughout the vocals. He had tremendous success with the same technique as we all know on Thriller. Jackson’s chorus of "Keep up with the force, don't stop. Don't stop 'til you get enough" is thought to have been inspired by the movie Star Wars, which was from this same time period- it was all about "The Force" back during those days. This was one of the first instances of Jackson writing his own music. He was encouraged to come up with his own songs by Quincy Jones, who produced the album, as well as his next. A little album called Thriller. This was Jackson's first #1 since "Ben" in 1972, that was a buddy song about a rat. No joke. This song led to Jackson taking home his first Grammy for Best R&B Vocal Performance. You have to check out the official video. It’s very high tech in a funky late 70’s, early 80’s sort of way.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yURRmWtbTbo

Talking Heads - Burning Down the House Drawing a groove inspiration from P-Funk, “Burning Down the House” was one of the biggest hits for Talking Heads. This probably had a little something to do with the heavy rotation the official video received during the early days of MTV. The Talking Heads' rhythm section, which consisted of drummer Chris Frantz and his wife bassist Tina Weymouth, wrote the music and somewhat nonsensical lyrics.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8D4AsLzlM0

Beach Boys - Wouldn’t It Be Nice

While it may be difficult to believe, but when it was released, Pet Sounds was not necessarily a popular album as far as sales for The Beach Boys. Although critically acclaimed, the album didn’t see commercial success until long after it’s release in the form of many reissues. Still to this day, many artists and bands continue to call out The Beach Boys and Pet Sounds as an influence. The masterpiece of an album is started off perfectly by “Wouldn’t It Be Nice”...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QjFQ4JQqK_0

Honorable Mentions:

Guns N’ Roses - Welcome to the Jungle Guns N' Roses completely and totally set the stage for what listeners were in for on their 1987 debut, Appetite for Destruction, with the opening song, “Welcome to the Jungle”. Basically the song title says it all.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1tj2zJ2Wvg

The Stone Roses - I Wanna Be Adored

Ian Brown’s pants are a lot baggier than Axel’s.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4D2qcbu26gs

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