Does the world's smallest violin play just for you? Do you like to wallow in your pain, even when the sun is shining and your rent is payed?
Me too friend, me too. Today, I am counting down the top ten saddest bastards of all time, sprinkling my Radio 3 playlist with Canada's most melancholy melody makers. Feel free to pipe in, if you care...
My list of the top ten saddest bastards:
10. Nick Drake
Nick Drake was such an outsider that he died at 26, not even making the 27 club. His music is haunting, magnificent and subliminal. He reached critical acclaim and moderate success only after his death, but his legacy touched everyone from Kate Bush to Paul Weller. Here is his most infamous song, Pink Moon.
9. Jeff Buckley
Taken from us by the waters of the Mississippi River, this beautiful soul taught every 90's goth girl how to feel. He had a god-given voice with impeccable range and control that still has not been matched by any of today's contemporary counterparts. Jeff Buckley was special and his music will make you WEEP. Not to mention, he was a mondobabe.
8. Scott Walker
Scott's elegant brand of melancholy started in the early 1960's as a member of The Walker Brothers (The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore). His mysterious demeanor, pin up looks and talent for pop melody got him far, but he disappeared from the mainstream in the 70's, only to return later completely reinvented in more experimental form. Here's one of his finest.
7. Ian Curtis
Joy Division are no laughing matter. Listen to almost any post punk or new wave band from 1982 and beyond and you'll hear their influence. Ian lived a troubled life but boy did he make some great music during his 23 years on this earth.
"There's a club if you'd like to go, you could meet somebody who really loves you. So you go and you stand on your own, and you leave on your own, and you go home and you cry and you want to die". This is what every sad bastard's therapy session sounds like. Case in point: The Smiths: How Soon is Now?
5. Roy Orbison
Roy is the king. That's all.
4. Nick Cave
Something about breaking up with the love of your life can really soften the hardest of punk/thrash/rockers. No one does sad bastard like Nick Cave.
3. Neil Young
Neil sings for the outsiders. The hopeless romantics forever trapped in a place or time where they just don't feel they belong in. Always searching for the SUN to bring them out of ETERNAL DARKNESS. Or their basement suites...
2. Robert Smith
This guy is one sad bastard. I mean, look at that makeup! He inspired many soft goths to embrace their feelings of isolation and loneliness and turn it into a movement, so props to you Robert, for getting me through my teen years.
1. Leonard Cohen
No one can make being sad and lonley as romantic a notion as Mr. Cohen. He is the Father of the sad bastard movement.
Alright guys, that's my list! Honorable mentions go to Jeff Tweedy, Elliott Smith, Mazzy Star, Cowboy Junkies, Townes Van Zandt, etc...
What are your favorite sad bastards? Do you abhor the sub genre? If so, WHY?
on Jun 29, 2012