Saturday, January 17, 2009


Yesterday on OutQ, I talked about this year's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees, as well as The Stooges, who should be getting in. But you may wonder, "OK, I'm interested in these artists, where should I start if I want to check them out?" I'm glad you asked! Here's my beginner's guide:

The Stooges: The Stooges don't have any kind of best-of retrospective. Which is fine, they really only made three albums, plus their comeback album, The Weirdness, in 2007. I'd say just start with their classic debut, The Stooges, from 1969. Just go in order from there! Fun House, from 1970, is also a classic. After that, they broke up, but then reunited with a slightly different lineup for Raw Power in 1973. That was their last album until The Weirdness. Of course, Iggy Pop had a pretty great solo career post-Stooges, and you can get an overview on the 2 CD set A Million In Prizes, which includes a bunch of Stooges songs.

Metallica also doesn't have a best-of, which is probably smart: when they finally release one, it will probably sell tens of millions... unless CDs are totally extinct. They may actually have missed a chance to make millions of dollars! Anyway, with them, I'd also start with their debut, 1983's Kill 'Em All. Then, their second album, 1984's Ride The Lightning and 1986's Master Of Puppets. That's their best music, right there. After that: 1988's ...and Justice For All and then I'd go with 1998's Garage Inc., a two disc set with all of their covers up to that point, and a full disc of newly recorded covers. After that, 1991's Metallica ("The Black Album") and 2008's Death Magnetic.

Run-D.M.C. has a couple of best-ofs, I think the best one is probably Greatest Hits from 2001. But really, I would just start with their debut album, 1984's Run-D.M.C., and then skip ahead to their third album, 1986's Raising Hell. Then, back to their second album, 1985's King Of Rock. Then their fourth one, 1988's Tougher Than Leather.

Surprisingly, Jeff Beck doesn't have many best-ofs, and I don't love the track list on the one that is still in print, 1995's The Best Of Beck. It only has one song from the original Jeff Beck Group, which included singer Rod Stewart and bassist Ron Wood. I'd rather spend the extra money on the 1991 3 CD box set, Beckology, which includes stuff from The Yardbirds and his entire solo career up to that point. Otherwise, I'd recommend getting the two albums by the original JBG, 1968's Truth and 1969's Beckola, and then Jeff's first instrumental album, 1975's Blow By Blow.

As for this year's other inductees, Bobby Womack, Little Anthony & The Imperials and Wanda Jackson, I'm not enough of an expert to make recommendations, but I'll look into them and hopefully make some recommendations in the next few months.

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