A Musical A-Z: O

Up to ‘O’, with untold options. Please continue to play along. Any song, artist, album, or band. As long as the name begins with ‘O’.

I will start with two songs that have the same title, but couldn’t be more different. When Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young released the album ‘Deja Vu’, in 1970, I had little idea how long that album, and the songs it contained, would stay with me. This was such a complete work, almost operatic in scale and ambition. It had so many memorable songs on it, I have never tired of listening to them. Including this one.
Our House

Many years later, (1980) British group Madness were on a roll, with their revival of Ska and Bluebeat tunes from the 1960s. The group personified a London sound, and used wacky pop videos to great effect. They went on to become part of the British musical establishment, and continue to perform to this day. This song from 1982 summed up working-class life in 1970s London. You had to be there. Wonderful.
Our House

American singer/songwriter Erykah Badu appeared on the scene in 1997, with the release of her album ‘Baduizm’. I was hooked from the start, with the mix of soul and jazz, alongside her smooth and sultry vocals. She had a great look too, and dominated the stage with a powerful presence. She is still around today, but for me it never got better than this.
On and On

During the great disco craze of the 1980s, few other female vocalists achieved the success of Donna Summer. Her huge voice, allied to some classic disco beats guaranteed her an audience and huge record sales. For a while, she was very much the ‘Big Thing’. Even now, decades later, her well-known songs are played all the time, and never lost their appeal. Including this powerhouse, from 1979.
On The Radio

When Andre Benjamin formed Outkast in the 1990s, I never imagined I would like their songs so much. The Rap and Hip-Hop crew soon turned their attention to making some superb pop videos though, and changed their style to suit the market. The rest, as the saying goes, is history.
Hey Ya

I have never been religious, but I have long been a fan of Gospel music. This gave us the Blues, which in turn led to Rock and Roll, Soul music, and every other genre that ever existed. Looking for an example to use for ‘O’, I went straight to this inspirational song from The Edwin Hawkins Singers. Believe or not, you cannot help but to be carried along by the joy.
Oh Happy Day

Before Fleetwood Mac became known for the vocals of Stevie Nicks, and released albums that sold untold millions, they were a Blues band from England who flirted with Progressive Rock. They released some great stuff, including this, from 1969.
Oh Well

A tricky top pick today, as I had quite a few favourites to choose from. But when it came down to it, I had to go with the sheer genius of David Bowie once again. Here he is, live on the BBC.
Oh You Pretty Things

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47 thoughts on “A Musical A-Z: O

  1. A great list. Yes, count me in the list of fans of Madness too. It is not my favourite song of theirs, but as you know I’m mad about musicals, so I had to mention ‘Oklahoma’. It never fails to get me going. Thanks, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not really a huge CS&N fan, but “Our House” is a wonderful tune. I see Roy Orbison listed above – – absolutely great singer, including when he sang with the Traveling Wilburys. One of the bands that I always play on long car drives, is Madness! What a fun band. “Of Monsters and Men” is a neat band from Iceland, that’s got great energy

    Liked by 1 person

  3. May I chime in with a little hip hop here? One of the more underrated rappers from the 90s was a New Yorker who went by the name O.C. It was one of the better hip hop albums of the 90s. Also, regarding Outkast, their first single, “Playas Ball” is fantastic. I have to add my favorite REM song here as well with “Orange Crush.” Love this list though!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Once again, you have made some wonderful choices Pete. Growing up in the 1970s, I wasn’t a big fan of disco, but of the few singers I did like, Donna Summers was one of them. I know Oasis has already been mentioned as well as Roy Orbison, so personally I’d just add: OneRepublic, Ozzie Osbourne, and Olivia Newton John. For songs:
    Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da – Beatles
    (Oh) Pretty Woman – both the Roy Orbison and Van Halen versions
    October -U2
    Ode To Joy – Beethoven
    Ode To Billie Joe – Bobbie Gentry
    Of the Night – Bastille

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  5. I will go with Roy Orbison. Pretty Woman, Crying, Only the Lonely. And especially Blue Bayou. I loved seeing the concert on PBS, from the eighties, that included famous musicians of the time happy to do back up for him.

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  6. Nice list, Pete. Lot’s of declarations of love to women: Oh Carol, Donna, Julie, Sheila, Sherry, Susanna.
    Some favorite O songs would be: “Old Man’ by Neil Young. “Only the Lonely” Orbison, “One of these Nights” by The Eagles and “Oye Como Va” by Santana.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your thoughts, Cindy. I have a lot of time for Santana, especially the song ‘Smooth’, which may feature later.
      ‘One of these nights’ is a definitive Eagles track, without doubt.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. As others have said, Oasis should be included. Two more bands for you, though – Ocean Colour Scene, and an obscurity from the 70’s, The Outlaws, a Southern rock band a bit like Lynyrd Skynyrd. I only had their first two albums and I nearly wore them out.

    As for songs, there are so many to choose from, but On Mercury by The Red Hot Chilli Peppers is hard to beat as is One Como Va by Santana.

    Cheers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Ian. I already knew that Oasis would get their share of mentions, so they didn’t need mine too. I quite liked Ocean Colour Scene at the time too.
      Cheers mate, Pete.

      Like

  8. Another great entry, Pete. Your choices are terrific. You neglected Britain’s greatest import in the 90’s, Oasis – I will offer up a slightly more obscure song, a beautiful ballad with a heavy dose of The Fab Four, “Stop Crying Your Heart Out”. The O’Jays wanted us all to board the “Love Train”, and my Fleetwood Mac choice is the Christie McVie ballad from TUSK, “Over & Over”.

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    1. Oasis were the great imitator of the Beatles, John. I left them out deliberately, as I can’t stand them as people. However, they left a legacy of wonderful songs, as long as I don’t have to watch them perform.
      Good call with the O’Jays too. They were on my shortlist.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. THis is a challenge…I had to have coffee to get the brain working….my double….”one Bad Apple” by Osmonds…….”Oblivion” by Macy Gray……”Oceans” by Cold Play…..”Of Mice & men” Megadeth……”Oh Josephine” by Black Crowes……I am spent afters that…LOL chuq

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Great choices Pete, there isn’t one I don’t know or like in your list.

    My first is a triple O, Ozzy Osborne with the album Ozzmosis, I have never been keen on Black Sabbath, but this album is different, with some great songs, Perry Mason being a standout track.
    2 more albums, On a day like today~ Bryan Adams, and One Day Remains by Alter Bridge.

    Was never a huge fan of Oasis, but their Album ‘Whats the story’ has some great songs on it.

    Songs~ On a bus to St.Clouds, written and sung by Gretchen Peters, but the definitive version by the lovely Trisha Yearwood.
    One night in Bangkok by Murray Head, great beat.
    Open up your arms ~ Ren Harvieu
    Overnight Sensation by the marvellous Tina Turner
    and the gorgeous Ordinary World by Duran Duran.

    Best leave some for your other follower I suppose πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for all those, FR. I am no fan of Ozzy or Black Sabbath, but he has a huge following. I like a lot of Oasis songs a great deal, as long as I don’t have to look at their smug or sulky faces as they sing them… πŸ™‚ Tina may well feature here, further down the alphabet.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

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