STOCKI'S FAVE SONGS OF 2021 PLAYLIST

Best of 21

Here is my Fave 40 songs of 2021 in a playlist, like a radio show. It is not laid out like a Top 40 from 1-40 or 40-1. It is thought out in how doings flows and there are lots of wee threads within. You can find it on Apple Music.

 

THE BEATLES - I’VE GOT A FEELING (Take 10)

(From Let It Be (Deluxe Version)

 

I loved the collaborative moments in the Get Back movie that proved The Beatles last tow records weren’t all about breaking up. 

 

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN - SHERRY DARLING

(From The Legendary 1979 No Nukes Concerts)

 

This song that was released a few months after this live version might have been my final Springsteen conversion moment. The sweet rock n roll joy.

 

IMELDA MAY - MADE TO LOVE

(From 11 Past The Hour)

 

Ireland’s favourite rock daughter at her most strident best.

 

JOY OLADUKON - IF YOU GOT A PROBLEM

 (From In Defence Of My Own Happiness (Complete version)

 

Folk/Soul purity. My find of the year, perhaps. Thank you Ricky Ross!

 

DAWES - FISHERMAN’S BLUES

(Single)

 

A Mike Scott Tweet had me racing off to hear what one of my fave bands had done to one of my fave ever songs. They’s re-invented perhaps as it was meant to be - a cathartic lament - and it sw me through the shadowy days of 2021.

 

NEEDTOBREATHE - CARRY ME (Featuring Jon Foreman)

 

The NeedToBeathe boys released a live record, an EP and an album in 2021. Love the spiritual hopefulness of this one. Switchfoot’s Jon Foreman guests to add to the treat!

 

INHALER - CHEER UP BABY

(From It Won’t Always Be Like This)

 

The young Dubliners attacking the parental at the top of the rock tree gave us a rip roaring first few steps.

 

DEL AMITRI - MISSING PERSON

(From Fatal Mistake)

 

The Del Boys were back with the same tumbling words, conjuring images and intriguing at every back flip.

 

DEACON BLUE - RIDING ON THE TIDE OF LOVE

(From Riding On The Tide Of Love)

 

From a healthy lengthed EP, an extension of City Of Love. 

 

DECLAN O’ROURKE - THE STARS OVER KINVARA

(From Arrivals)

 

Maybe my Song of The Year. I’m there in County Galway but imaging that it could be the north coast of Ireland where I call home.

 

MARTYN JOSEPH - FELT SO MUCH

(From 1960)

Martyn and I turned 60 in the same 18 months and this was his song of gratitude for what I would call a 10:10 life. It resonated!

 

DAVID GRAY - HEART & SOUL

(From Skellig)

 

Mesmerising melodies in what I felt was a comeback record for Gray.

 

THE WALLFLOWERS - I HEAR THE OCEAN (WHEN I WANNA HEAR TRAINS)

(From Exit Wounds)

 

Dylan junior’s Wallflowers made my fave album of their. Hurtling down the tracks as smooth as you like.

 

DAVID CROSBY - RODRIGUEZ FOR A NIGHT 

(From For Free)

 

David Crosby should not even be alive with all the drugs he took but at 80 he is making the best music of his life. 

 

BRANDI CARLILE - RIGHT ON TIME (IN HARMONY)

(From the single)

 

I discovered Brandi Carlile in 2021. I even read her book. This was lead off track on her excellent album but I preferred this version.

 

BOB DYLAN - BLIND WILLIE MCTELL (Take 5)

(From Springtime In New York - Bootleg Series 16; 1980-85 (Deluxe))

 

I have loved Outfidels bootleg of Infidels for years and years. It was so good to get an official release. This has to be one of Dylan’s very finest moments.

 

THE KILLERS - SLEEPTALKING

(From Pressure Machine)

 

An intriguing record by The Killers. I liked this song best of all. I can hear the crowd sing it back. 

 

DAVID KEENAN - HOPEFUL DYSTOPIA

(From What Then?)

 

A quirky number form a quirky Irish artist. 

 

DARK TROPICS - HELEN’S BAY

(From Ink)

 

Discovered these guys at the NI Music Awards evening. Strong songwriting and I love their sense of place.

 

ANTHONY TONER - RECOGNISED CODEWORD

(From In Six Inches Of Water)

 

A song that takes us back to 70s Troubled east Belfast where the taxi driver sees his regular girl pick up as a Recognised codeword. Toner at his storytelling best. 

 

 

FERNA - LAPSED

(Single)

 

So a peace committee that I am on commissioned Hannah McPhillimy to write a song about 100 years of Northern Ireland for an event to mark the fact. On These Steps took place at Union College where the first NI parliament met. 100 years to the day, under a new moniker Ferna, this was a literary and insightful looking back.

 

DANI LARKIN - SAMSON & GOLIATH

(From Notes To A Maiden Warrior)

 

I adored Larkin’s debut, particularly side 2 and this song about Belfast.

 

GEORGE HARRISON - WHAT IS LIFE (Take 1)

(From All Things Must Pass 50th Anniversary Edition)

 

Loved all of the out takes on the 50th box set but might have played the joy out of this one most of all. 

 

THE WATERBOYS - THE STREETS OF GALWAY 

(From The Magnificent Sven Box Set)

 

Around 1988-89 I heard The Sawdoctors sing this one in their legendary support slots with The Waterboys. Writer Padraig Stevens left The Sawdoctors and it never got recorded. Over 30 years later I have it… “lashin’… splish-splashin’… in a Galway fashion…”

 

DEA MATRONA - STAMP ON IT

(Single)

 

Ballinahinch teenage girls and band to watch, followed in the line of Brown Eyed Girl, Teenage Kicks and Oh Yeah, with a great Northern Irish single! I nominated this as Single of The Year for NI Music Awards and it won! 

 

RENEE FLEMING, ALLISON KRAUSS & RHIANNON GIDDENS - BEFORE THE DELUGE

(Single)

 

Delicious arrangement of Jackson Browne’s classic by Caroline Shaw sung by 3 amazing voices. As prophetically powerful in the year of COP 26 as in the early 70s when it was written.

 

OLIVIA VEDDER, EDDIE VEDDER & GLEN HANSARD - MY FATHER’S DAUGHTER

(From Flag Day (soundtrack)

 

A treat of a surprise soundtrack filled with good things but I thought this was best. Eddie Vedder’s daughter nails an emotions between daughter and father.

 

BLUE RODEO - DEEP DARK WELL  

(From Many A Mile)

 

Delighted with a new album from Canada’s finest. This is my fave this week.

 

ADELE - I DRINK WINE

(From 30)

 

I thought Adele nailed the spiritual zeitgeist right here!

 

STING - LOVING YOU

(From The Bridge)

 

A mix of Hosea’s story and Gospel whether Sting intended it or not!

 

TORN AGAIN (Feat LEONARD COHEN) - DANIEL LANOIS

(Single)

 

Danny Lanois does his sonic genius around Leonard Cohen vocal. Canadians together. Beautiful.

 

JACKSON BROWNE - STILL LOOKING FOR SOMETHING

(From Downhill From Everywhere)

 

Jackson back to his very best and still searching… inside and outside.

 

KARINE POLWART & DAVY MILLIGAN - THE PATH THAT WINDS BEFORE US

 

A spiritual searching song on a beautiful record where Milligan’s piano is all the grace notes that Polwart’s voice needed.

 

ANDREW PATTERSON - HOPE WILL FIND US

(Single)

 

Patterson’s poetic ruminations always have the right sliver of spiritual light. This is his best yet, in my opinion!)

 

BIG RED MACHINE - THE GHOST OF CINCINNATI

(From How Long Do You Think It’s Gonna last?)

 

This one stood out on supergroup Big Red Machine’s 2021 record by its name check of Over The Rhine, a district of Cincinnati that named my favourite band!

 

MICK FLANNERY & SUSAN O’NEILL - BLUE RIVER

(From In The Game)

 

Their voices. Put together. Mighty!

 

NICK CAVE & WARREN ELLIS - HAND OF GOD

(From Carnage)

 

Cave is always dabbling with intriguing theological ideas. This is 2021’s!

 

MARTIN GARRIX - WE ARE THE PEOPLE (Feat. BONO & THE EDGE)

(Single)

 

Heard this on the radio and thought it wounded like U2. Duh! 

 

COLDPLAY - COLORATURA

(From Music of The. Spheres)

 

Didn’t like this Coldplay after loving the last one BUT this Beatles’ Abbey Road Medley like closer had me.

 

GRAHAM NASH & JONI MITCHELL - OUR HOUSE (demo)

(From Deja Vu 50th Anniversary Edition)

 

Ramshackle demo but a song about being in love with Joni in Joni’s house that now has Joni’s voice on it. Come on!

STOCKI'S FAVE SONGS OF 2021 PLAYLIST