Your creepy chronicler has once more been inspired by real life events. The recent funeral for a friend (of a former lady-friend) included a slideshow and rock music. There in a church, your evil author witnessed an audio-video barrage of a man’s life complete with sometimes questionable photos and rock music. It seemed a bit bizarre to your scary scribe and yet put a thought into his haunted head: “What song would you play at your funeral?”
What better time to ask this question than Halloween, eh? So without further adieu, here are more responses from some of my special spooks and spirits!
Patty Mccurry wants to have “Hells Bells” by hard rock band AC/DC played when she dies. She says she want to “put the ‘fun’ in funeral.” This track is the lead-in to their 1980 release Back in Black. It was the group’s first album without Bon Scott. It begins with an appropriate slow tolling of a bell and in 2010 was covered by the act Gregorian for their CD Dark Side of the Chant. (You could use both versions.)
Michael Messina was in a quandary: “So many choices? Sorry, I need a double-shot. First ‘Paranoid’ (the titular track from the 1970 LP) by (the Brit band Black) Sabbath, then right after (that) ‘Crossroads’ (an adaptation of Robert Johnson’s 1936 tune) by (Eric) Clapton played while my friends haul me up and strap me in my tree stand in my woods in a one-piece jumpsuit to keep me intact and my old 30/30 wired on me also . . . (with) the best damn cleavage picture a certain somebody has maybe in my pocket. (OK. Anyone that creative deserves a double-shot, no?)
Sharon Fiume Sholette said her choice “would probably be Deep Purple’s ‘Smoke on the Water’ ‘cause I want to be cremated, though, I doubt my kids would play it.” The song is from their 1972 platter Head. It slotted in at number 434 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest songs of all time in 2004. You know the riff. You know the four-note G minor blues scale melody harmonized in parallel fourths. It’s classic.
Ethel Hayes DeGroodt selected Queen’s hit “Another One Bites The Dust”. This is a song from the group’s eighth studio recording The Game released in 1980. It was written by band bassist John Deacon. It was worldwide hit climbing to number one on the US Billboard Hot 100. It remains their best-selling single, garnered a Grammy nomination and slotted in at number 34 on Billboard's All Time Top 100.
Michele Marotta picked “Stones in the Road” by Mary Chapin Carpenter. This is her titular track from her 1994 album of the same name. This and the other tracks on the release are comparatively stripped down and harkens back to her musical roots. It is both a memorable and literate song.
Faith Hershiser has Leonard Cohen’s “Bird On A Wire” in mind. It’s one of his signature songs off his 1969 platter Songs from a Room. In 1968 Cohen was in Greece and depressed. His girlfriend tried to help him out of it by handing him his guitar. That was when he started to compose the cut inspired by a bird he spotted on the phone wires. He finished it here in California in a Hollywood motel room.
Musician/singer-songwriter Hunter Scott MacLeod would like those paying their last respects to him to listen to “Black Celebration” by Depeche Mode. This is the album opener and titular track to the band’s influential album by Depeche Mode released in 1986. It solidified their ever-darkening signature sound previously only foreshadowed.
Kittie Shaughnessy contributed earlier but changed her mind and decided at her wake she wants folks to hear "(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party!)" by the rap group the Beastie Boys. It was released in 1986 off of their debut disc Licensed to Ill (1986). It went to number 7 on the Billboard 100. It was written by Adam Yauch and Tom "Tommy Triphammer" Cushman who were actually trying to do a parody of such classics as "Smokin' in the Boys Room" and "I Wanna Rock".
Colleen Slade said she wants the funeral parlor to play “Home In The Sky” by Cat Stevens for her service. The track is the closing cut on Stevens’ 1974 platter Buddha and the Chocolate Box which has a heavy spiritual influence to it overall. The cut included Gerry Conway who would go on to play drums for Jethro Tull.
Mickey Mignot had The Doors “The End” on her playlist for her end. Lead singer Jim Morrison originally wrote this song about the end of his relationship with his girlfriend. Live performances of the tune at L.A.’s Whiskey a Go Go led to the song becoming an almost 12-minute piece on their 1967 self-titled LP. Rolling Stone magazine slotted it in at number 336 on their 2010 list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time".
So there you have it, my witches and b*tches, a demonically different, terribly tuneful take on the upcoming horrid holiday. Feel fiendishly free to contribute your own responses. Ask your best fiends this macabre musical question and make your own playlist. What song do you want played at your funeral? After all, guys and ghouls, no one lives forever.
My name is Phoenix and . . . that’s the bottom line.