Day 36: The Coronavirus Countdown – 100 Days of Great Music

The staff of the College Football America Yearbook is on the road every weekend of the college football season, shooting games and gathering information for the following year’s book. That means a lot of driving and listening to a lot of music.

Earlier this year our College Football America Yearbook publisher Kendall Webb and our director of editorial content Chuck Cox put together ‘The Coronavirus Countdown – 100 Days of Great Music.’ Each of them sat down and compiled a list of 100 great albums. Their goal was not to select the ‘100 greatest albums of all time.’ It was simply to select 100 great albums to write about as they passed the time during quarantine and shelter-at-home orders.

This 2020 college football season will be unprecedented in so many ways. It’s very likely none of us will be on the road for games because, like most people, we’re trying to stay healthy. And we hope you are too.

So, for the next 100 days, we’re going to publish their countdown here at CollegeFootballAmericaPR.com (the list was originally published on Webb’s personal site, kendallwebb.net). Consider it the ultimate playlist for the ultimate college road trip — music for every taste, from every genre and from every decade of the modern era of music. When the staff of the College Football America Yearbook is back on the road, you can bet these will be some of the tunes we’re listening to.

And, if you missed the previous installments of our series, just click here to head to the Coronavirus Countdown — 100 Days of Great Music home page.

Here’s Day 36

It’s a day of stark contrasts here as Chuck features a heavy metal classic and Kendall opts for an obscure Americana gem.

So looking for some common ground, we found some folk and country and even bluegrass artists covering metal and hard rock bands, but it was harder to find metal bands willing to venture into covers of folk or country artists.

One notable exception in recent years was Disturbed’s cover of “Sound Of Silence,” written by Paul Simon and originally recorded by the legendary folk-rock duo Simon & Garfunkel in the ’60s. While nothing can beat the original, Disturbed’s cover was a jaw-dropping rendition that reintroduced the song to a new audience. And that’s enough for us — the 2015 album that contains that version is titled “Immortalized,” and it’s your bonus pick of the day in our Coronavirus Countdown.

— Chuck Cox and Kendall Webb

CHUCK’S ALBUM OF THE DAY

Metallica

Metallica (1991)

Why I Love It

Dubbed “The Black Album” for its Spinal Tap-esque cover, Metallica took its popularity into the mainstream with one of the greatest hard rock albums ever laid down on tape, in my opinion. The songs on this album were more polished and less of the thrash metal the band made its name playing, but they don’t rob Metallica of its identity or soul. On the contrary, they strengthen them. These songs are timeless, and this album will still be listened to in 2091. It’s that damn good.

Album Highlights

“Enter Sandman,” “Sad But True” and “Nothing Else Matters”

Kendall on Chuck’s Album of the Day

Coming three years after “… And Justice For All,” an album I considered for my own list, the “Black Album” marks a change of direction for Metallica. For some hardcore fans, it was too much of a change in the commercial direction, and the band took a lot of criticism. But looking back, the album has aged better than even that previous effort, and who can argue with what it did for Metallica? They were very much a band on the fringe of the pop mainstream, but this one opened the door to millions of more fans by making their music more accessible. It’s a record that deserves a listen, and it was good to hear it again.

KENDALL’S ALBUM OF THE DAY

The Greencards

Viridian (2007)

Why I Love It

I saw The Greencards open for Willie Nelson and Bob Dylan at Nashville’s old Greer Stadium, and I was hooked.

The band’s name refers to the fact that two of its members are from Australia and the third is from the U.K., but they play a distinctly American version of music and fit neatly into the Americana genre. They never really found a wide audience, but they made some beautiful records that sounded like an equal blend of folk and bluegrass.

“Viridian” is the trio’s third album, but the previous two — “Movin’ On” and “Weather And Water” — are worthy predecessors that require a spin, too.

Album Highlights

“All The Way From Italy,” “I Don’t Want To Lose You” and “Lonesome Side Of Town”

Chuck on Kendall’s Album of the Day

I’ve always loved bands that have multiple lead singers because it provides opportunities to diversify the songs in a big way. The Greencards use that tool a couple of times on the album, which has such great flow to it. It’s truly a beautiful record that is perfect for popping in on a road trip on the highway. The bonus version of this album has a great cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Second Hand News.”

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