Day 57: 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 57

Kendall’s Album of the Day is Joni Mitchell’s “Blue” released in 1971.

It’s often cited as one of the greatest albums ever landing at No. 30 on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums list. Three years ago, it was named the No. 1 album of all time by a female artist on NPR’s list of 150 great albums by women.

Curious what album it beat out, we looked it up, and it was another solid record that had made it to the final cuts in Kendall’s list. Released in 1998, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was a blockbuster record that broke sales records at the time of its release. Hill, a member of The Fugees, appeared to be set for a long, successful solo career, but 22 years after its release,  the album remains her only solo album to date.

— Chuck Cox and Kendall Webb

CHUCK’S ALBUM OF THE DAY

Glasvegas

Glasvegas (2008)

Why I Love It

Before I ever heard a song off of this record, I saw a quote from Bono that said he thought “It’s My Own Cheating Heart That Makes Cry” was one of the best songs he had ever heard. Agreed. But that is just one of the many gems on this debut album by the Glasgow, Scotland, quartet. The album is brimming with heartfelt lyrics that take you on a 42-minute emotional journey and leave you feeling happy, sad and hooked on the record. Lead singer James Allan’s thick Scottish accent also adds a certain punch to the songs. He wrote all 10 tracks on the album, including the tear-jerking opener, “Flowers & Football Tops.” I have adored this record for 12 years. I have no doubt that I always will.

Album Highlights

“Flowers & Football Tops,” “It’s My Own Cheating Heart That Makes Me Cry” and “Go Square Go”

Kendall on Chuck’s Album of the Day

This is one of those albums that Chuck introduced me to, and it’s brought me a lot of joy in the past 12 years — even if the album itself can be a bit of an emotional roller coaster. Even sad songs have a way of lifting you up, though, I think because we are comforted knowing that we’re not alone in our pain. This is one of those albums that will bring you down just so it can lift you up in the end.

KENDALL’S ALBUM OF THE DAY

Joni Mitchell

Blue (1971)

Why I Love It

I guess I’m a sucker for a song named “Blue.”

Earlier in the countdown I featured albums by The Jayhawks and Chantal Kreviazuk, each of which featured a great song titled “Blue.”

But maybe the bluest “Blue” of all is Joni Mitchell’s title song from her 1971 magnum opus. You’ll find this album on virtually every critic’s “Best of” list, but that isn’t strictly what my list or Chuck’s list is about. We tried to pick 100 personal favorites that draw us back again and again while focusing on albums that almost demand that we listen to them in their entirety. This is one of those albums for me; the fact that it’s also universally-acclaimed as one of the greatest albums of all time is just a coincidence in this case.

Album Highlights

“All I Want,” “Blue” and “The Last Time I Saw Richard”

Chuck on Kendall’s Album of the Day

Kendall’s Album of the Day is Joni Mitchell’s “Blue” released in 1971.

It’s often cited as one of the greatest albums ever landing at No. 30 on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums list. Three years ago, it was named the No. 1 album of all time by a female artist on NPR’s list of 150 great albums by women.

Curious what album it beat out, we looked it up, and it was another solid record that had made it to the final cuts in Kendall’s list. Released in 1998, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was a blockbuster record that broke sales records at the time of its release. Hill, a member of The Fugees, appeared to be set for a long, successful solo career, but 22 years after its release,  the album remains her only solo album to date.

— Chuck Cox and Kendall Webb

CHUCK’S ALBUM OF THE DAY

Glasvegas

Glasvegas (2008)

Why I Love It

Before I ever heard a song off of this record, I saw a quote from Bono that said he thought “It’s My Own Cheating Heart That Makes Cry” was one of the best songs he had ever heard. Agreed. But that is just one of the many gems on this debut album by the Glasgow, Scotland, quartet. The album is brimming with heartfelt lyrics that take you on a 42-minute emotional journey and leave you feeling happy, sad and hooked on the record. Lead singer James Allan’s thick Scottish accent also adds a certain punch to the songs. He wrote all 10 tracks on the album, including the tear-jerking opener, “Flowers & Football Tops.” I have adored this record for 12 years. I have no doubt that I always will.

Album Highlights

“Flowers & Football Tops,” “It’s My Own Cheating Heart That Makes Me Cry” and “Go Square Go”

Kendall on Chuck’s Album of the Day

This is one of those albums that Chuck introduced me to, and it’s brought me a lot of joy in the past 12 years — even if the album itself can be a bit of an emotional roller coaster. Even sad songs have a way of lifting you up, though, I think because we are comforted knowing that we’re not alone in our pain. This is one of those albums that will bring you down just so it can lift you up in the end.

KENDALL’S ALBUM OF THE DAY

Joni Mitchell

Blue (1971)

Why I Love It

I guess I’m a sucker for a song named “Blue.”

Earlier in the countdown I featured albums by The Jayhawks and Chantal Kreviazuk, each of which featured a great song titled “Blue.”

But maybe the bluest “Blue” of all is Joni Mitchell’s title song from her 1971 magnum opus. You’ll find this album on virtually every critic’s “Best of” list, but that isn’t strictly what my list or Chuck’s list is about. We tried to pick 100 personal favorites that draw us back again and again while focusing on albums that almost demand that we listen to them in their entirety. This is one of those albums for me; the fact that it’s also universally-acclaimed as one of the greatest albums of all time is just a coincidence in this case.

Album Highlights

“All I Want,” “Blue” and “The Last Time I Saw Richard”

Chuck on Kendall’s Album of the Day

I’ll be the first to admit that Joni Mitchell was an artist I never listened to much for a long time. Once I finally got around to taking a deep dive into her catalogue a few years back, I realized I had been missing out on some great music. Her amazing voice gives so much power to every song on the record. It seems like focusing lyrics on romantic relationships often make for some of the greatest albums. This one is no exception. It’s an album for the ages from a tremendous era of music.

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