Day 59: 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 59

Our two lists crossed today in a unique way with two all-time classics on the agenda — Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours courtesy of Chuck and Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks from Kendall.

So why not make it three? Often hailed as the greatest album of all-time on critic’s lists, The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band is certainly deserving of the honor. Whether it’s the best musically-speaking is up to personal taste, but the album is, perhaps, the most important album of all-time for the creative freedom it unleashed in rock and roll.

It is your bonus pick of the day.

— Chuck Cox and Kendall Webb

CHUCK’S ALBUM OF THE DAY

Fleetwood Mac

Rumours (1977)

Why I Love It

When Fleetwood Mac was ready to record its 11th album, the plan of attack was not to have romantic friction between band members. However, discord led to a masterpiece in this case. Prior to entering the studio, John and Christine McVie were fresh off a divorce, Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks were having relationship difficulties, and Mick Fleetwood discovered that his wife was having an affair. Somehow, the band put those domestic disputes aside to record what is widely regarded as one of the greatest albums of all time. Utilizing three different singers, this masterpiece is chocked full of some of the band’s biggest and most memorable songs. It’s another one of those records that I have to listen to all of if I’m going to listen to any of it. I also believe that Buckingham is one of the most underrated guitar players of all time. The guy is beyond fantastic, which is evident on several of the songs on this album. Without question, Rumours would be on my list of 100 greatest albums, too.

Album Highlights

“Second Hand News,” “Never Going Back Again” and “Go Your Own Way”

Kendall on Chuck’s Album of the Day

This is one of those days where everything just kind of lined up perfect, and we ended up with two all-time classics. That’s not specifically what this countdown is about; it was more about introducing you to personal favorites that draw us back in again and again, but then it also makes sense that some of the greatest albums of all-time would have the power to do that. And this one is just as powerful as the album I share below.

KENDALL’S ALBUM OF THE DAY

Van Morrison

Astral Weeks (1968)

Why I Love It

Everybody knows Van Morrison’s “Brown-Eyed Girl” along with some of his other better-known hits.

But I’ll admit I was late to the game on his albums, something that I’ve been exploring over the past decade or so. I think he has one of the best classic rock catalogs out there, and he’s become one of my favorite artists. Narrowing this down to just one Van Morrison album was the hard part, but I settled on Astral Weeks because it was so emphatically non-rock and roll.

On the contrary, similar to the way The Beatles were pushing boundaries on your bonus pick of the day, Van Morrison dives into blues and jazz and a myriad of other styles on this record free from any constraints or expectations. It’s one of the best albums in the history of popular music.

Album Highlights

“Sweet Thing,” “Cyprus Avenue” and “The Way Young Lovers Do”

Chuck on Kendall’s Album of the Day

Here’s another cool day where our albums have a lot in common. Like my selection for today, Astral Weeks is heralded as one of the greatest albums of all time. Rightfully so. From start to finish, this is a beautiful and hypnotic record filled with gorgeous songs. It’s a timeless album that stuck with me and draws me back in regularly. This was also one that just missed making my final 100. I’m glad Kendall included it on his list.

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