Most Played Songs in 2011

Stereo Sanctity
Stereo Sanctity

According to LastFM, these are my most played songs for 2011. The caveat is that these are just the songs that played on my desktop computer/stereo; in other words, not including statistics on what I listened to on my iPhone, iPod, iPad, in my car, and so on. Just what was played on my Mac Pro in my office. So these are not absolute numbers, nevertheless, I did listen to these songs a lot in 2011.

Annotations as necessary:

  • Solomon Burke – Cry to Me –  I added three versions to my library this year, originally released in 1963, 1968, and 1983, guess when you add all the play counts…
  • Bukka White – Parchman farm blues – tried to learn to play this song on guitar, but eventually gave up. I’m just not that good, nor dedicated enough to become good.
  • Bob Dylan – Buckets of Rain – made, and played repeatedly, a playlist consisting of “rain” songs since there was so much precipitation this year.
  • Bob Dylan – It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue
  • Willie Nelson – Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain – another rain song, and a great, favorite tune
  • Big Bill Broonzy – Key To The Highway – added a lot of Big Bill Broonzy songs to my library this year because he’s a genius, and an American institution
  • Kurt Vile – Jesus Fever -I do like this song, but it probably got as many plays as it did because I made a “Rapture” playlist for the Harold Camping joke.
  • Ali Farka Touré & Toumani Diabaté – Sabu Yerkoy – Uncut Magazine featured this song twice on their ride-along disc, plus I already owned the album it was from. So, three versions in my library. Good song though, don’t get me wrong.
  • The Fall – L.A. – picked up This Nation’s Saving Grace Omnibus Edition this year which includes an entire second disc of unreleased versions of songs on the original 1985 LP.
  • Led Zeppelin – Since I’ve Been Loving You
  • The Fall – What You Need
  • Dead Kennedys – California Über Alles – Jerry Brown is governor of California, of course. Again.
  • Bob Marley & The Wailers – Stop That Train
  • The Saints – Untitled – The Saints are a new to me band, so I bought several of their albums. Subsequently that means I have five versions of this track, including one called, Untitled (International Robot Session)
  • Beirut – O Leãozinho – Red Hot and Rio compilation.
  • Wanda Jackson – Thunder On The Mountain – Jack White, Bob Dylan, plus was also featured on an Uncut Magazine disk.
  • Joy Division – She’s Lost Control – including live versions, remixes, BBC versions, etc., I have 11 versions of this great tune.
  • The Stooges – Search and Destroy
  • Solomon Burke – Everybody Needs Somebody To Love
  • Blind Willie McTell – Broke Down Engine Blues – awesome song, impossible to play on guitar (for me at least)
  • Bert Jansch & John Renbourn – East Wind – unfortunately, Bert Jansch died this year. A stellar talent.
  • Elvis Costello – Watch Your Step – still love this bass guitar line even after hearing it hundreds of times since I owned Trust on vinyl back in the stone ages.
  • King Sunny Ade – E Ba Mi Dupe
  • Gil Scott-Heron –The Revolution Will Not Be Televised – another stellar talent who died this year. There are more than one version of this song, released on different albums.

Fela Anikulapo Kuti - complete works
Fela Anikulapo Kuti – complete works

And while I’m living in the past, also per LastFM, these are the most played artists in 2011, as of right now, with the same caveats as above. And one more caveat, LastFM, by its very nature, skews towards artists with deep catalogs. In other words, since Bob Dylan has so damn many albums, covering so many moods, the Dylan play count is higher than say, Kurt Vile or The Decemberists. I own multiple albums by all of these artists listed below. Are these my favorite artists? No, some are, some aren’t, but obviously I like these artists more than I skip over them from playing.


  • Bob Dylan
  • Fela Kuti – new box set, plus Fela is genius
  • R.E.M. – Their career announced as over, of course I listened to their entire catalog a couple times
  • Wilco
  • Bob Marley & The Wailers
  • Bert Jansch
  • Led Zeppelin – picked up some good bootlegs this year
  • Solomon Burke
  • David Bowie
  • Richard Thompson
  • Glenn Gould – we watched a good documentary about Glenn Gould this year. Intriguing dude.
  • Muddy Waters
  • The Rolling Stones
  • Tom Waits
  • Pink Floyd – played their entire catalog in date order sometime this summer.
  • Big Bill Broonzy
  • The Pogues
  • The Saints
  • The Clash
  • Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band – an unusual talent who died this year
  • Pavement
  • Townes Van Zandt

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