Here is where I talk a little about various artists whose music I own. (S/T means self-titled.)
Since MTV was a big part of my early music experience, I tried to find videos of one song for each band just for fun. Apologies in advance for some of the more lurid examples, I mostly picked them based on the song, not on the video content!
Deee-Lite (1990 World Clique, 1992 Infinity Within, 1994 Dewdrops in the Garden, 1996 Sampladelic Relics & Dancefloor Oddities) — If you want a pick-me-up, there’s little out there more infectious than Deee-Lite. “Groove Is In the Heart” was huge, but that whole first album is just great. They kind of flamed out commercially after that, but I went back and picked up their subsequent albums and found them to be great in their own way.
Depeche Mode (1981 Speak & Spell, 1982 A Broken Frame, 1983 Construction Time Again, 1984 Some Great Reward, 1986 Black Celebration, 1987 Music for the Masses, 1990 Violator, 1993 Songs of Faith and Devotion, 1997 Ultra, 2001 Exciter, 2005 Playing the Angel, 2009 Sounds of the Universe, 2013 Delta Machine, 2017 Spirit, plus ~24 CD singles) — Simply judging from the completeness of my collection, Depeche Mode is clearly near the top of my list of favorite bands. I was introduced to them in high school during the Black Celebration era, but Music for the Masses was the first album I picked up, and I was totally hooked. Overall, my favorite album has to be 1982’s A Broken Frame, with its amazing bookends of “Leave in Silence” and “The Sun & the Rainfall,” and everything in between. My favorite DM song, though, is probably “Walking in My Shoes” from Songs of Faith and Devotion, a song which always hits me in the feels.
Duran Duran (1982 Rio, 1983 Seven and the Ragged Tiger, 1986 Notorious, 1988 Big Thing, 1989 Decade, 1990 Liberty, 1993 S/T, 2004 Astronaut, 2007 Red Carpet Massacre, 2010 All You Need Is Now, 2015 Paper Gods) — I’ve been a DD fan since the early days, largely based on their large MTV presence and evocative/bizarre videos. (This also gave me an “in” with the girls in grade school, ha!) Also was a huge fan of their James Bond theme, “A View to a Kill.” Their music was always an interesting mix of poppy and new wave, with lots of pretentiousness, and lyrics that made no sense except as word painting and pure imagery. Their “reboot” with 2004’s Astronaut has produced a series of top-notch albums, so I’m thrilled to see that they’re still actively making new music.
Terence Trent D’Arby (1987 Introducing the Hardline According to Terence Trent D’Arby, 1989 Neither Fish Nor Flesh) — In 1987 there were two big solo pop stars making huge waves: George Michael and Terence Trent D’Arby. From the opening of his debut album, I was hooked with the poetry of his lyrics and his music, at times minimal and at times lush. At one point I owned all of his pre-Sananda Maitreya albums but eventually pared it down to just the first two.
The Dandy Warhols (2003 Welcome to the Monkey House, 2008 …Earth to the Dandy Warhols) — Was briefly into these guys during the Welcome to the Monkey House era, but interest kind of faded shortly afterwards. Apparently Monkey House was produced by Nick Rhoades of Duran Duran, which might be just the influence I needed to enjoy them.
Death Cab for Cutie (2005 Plans, 2008 Narrow Stairs) — Although DCC was on the radio constantly here in the Seattle area, I only gave them a real shot after discovering and falling in love with Ben Gibbard‘s side project The Postal Service. I’d say both of these albums are just fine and enjoyable to listen to, but not enough to motivate me to explore more of the catalogue.
Def Leppard (1981 High ‘n’ Dry, 1983 Pyromania, 1987 Hysteria) — Ah, the hair band days. In high school I started off with Pyromania, which had a number of singles on heavy MTV rotation. When Hysteria landed, they grew even more popular, but after that they seemed to recognize their formula and it became a little too obvious for my tastes. Meanwhile, I had come around to loving the immediate predecessor, High ‘n’ Dry, and still consider “Bringin’ on the Heartbreak” to be one of the best songs of the 80’s.
DJ Irene (2002 Phonosynthesis, 2003 Fearless) — A little pump-you-up trance music for late night programming.
DJ Tiësto (2004 Parade Of The Athletes) — Performance for the 2004 Summer Olympics, but I have to admit it was the “Adagio for Strings” cover that attracted me, long before I was ever familiar with the Barber piece, and even longer before I was familiar with the “Agnus Dei” choral setting.
DEVO (1990 Greatest Hits, 1990 Greatest Misses) — I don’t do much karaoke, but when pressed, I can do a mean rendition of “Whip It“. It’s awesome that they released a collection of “Greatest Misses,” and pretty much love them all, so I figure some day I will bite the bullet and dig into their back catalogue more extensively.
The Doors (2000 The Best of The Doors) — I was a serious Doors fan in college and at one point owned all their albums. Eventually I backed off a bit and settled on this collection, which is relatively thorough.