#1 with a Bullet

Mozart_Sussmayr 1

A very strange story appeared on the Canadian Broadcasting Company’s website today. Being post-call from a busy night on the bone-marrow transplant ward, I feel compelled to share it with you. Plus, I think I’m going to start my own blog meme. A dark and creepy blog meme.So, the story reports the results of a British survey of 5,000 people asked what song that would want played at their own funeral or memorial service. First, you should note that 51% of people have considered a specific song to be played at their funeral. And 79% of these people have discussed the choice of song with friends or family.

Now, mind you, the top 10 list reflects British tastes in music. I’m sure that Americans will have an entirely different top 10 (thus the creepy blog meme – to elicit this important set of data):

The top 10 most requested songs were:

  1. Goodbye My Lover (James Blunt)
  2. Angels (Robbie Williams)
  3. I’ve Had the Time of My Life (Jennifer Warnes and Bill Medley) [ed. note: Dirty Dancing at your funeral? Really? Really??]
  4. Wind Beneath My Wings (Bette Midler)
  5. Pie Jesu, Requiem
  6. Candle in the Wind (Elton John)
  7. With or Without You (U2)
  8. Tears from Heaven (Eric Clapton)
  9. Every Breath You Take (The Police)
  10. Unchained Melody (Righteous Brothers)

The article goes on to state:

“Frequently covered favourites, including the traditional song Danny Boy and Bob Dylan’s Knocking on Heaven’s Door, were among the top 20.”

Other somewhat surprising entries on the list included the rollicking rock track I’ll Sleep When I am Dead by Bon Jovi and Fame (I Want to Live Forever), the Oscar-winning theme to the 1980 movie and subsequent TV series Fame.”

Oh, those wacky Brits.

Now, I will admit to both having thought of what song I would want played at my funeral and I’ve also discussed it with my wife. I told her that I wanted a traditional Jewish funeral … with bagpipes. And Guinness. All that being said, I’ve not yet composed a top five list of songs to play. And so, without further ado, I present to you the Top 5 Songs I Want Played (Over My Dead Body):

  1. “When the Levee Breaks” by Led Zeppelin: Because “Stairway to Heaven” is so obvious.
  2. “Dies irae” from Mozart’s Requiem: This piece speaks for itself. I’ve loved it for years.
  3. A Love Supreme” by John Coltrane: I consider this to be one of the greatest pieces of music ever composed. Coltrane’s “humble offering to God” in the “Acknowledgement” converted this tired agnostic.
  4. “Steppin’ Out” by Joe Jackson: A fitting way to say adeiu.
  5. Non, je ne regrette rien” by Edith Piaf: No regrets. None.

And because it wouldn’t be a blog meme unless I tagged 5 people (lets see if they take the bait), I call on Flea, Clark, Girl MD, Dr. Anonymous and Frectis to wallow in the dark with me and contribute their five songs.

[NB #1: In no way is this meant to imply that the author is going to avail himself of these songs anytime soon.]

[NB #2: In no way does the author hope that anyone will need to use this top 5 list anytime soon.]

[NB #3: Picked up by MetaFilter. Excellent discussion.]

[NB #4: Last one. I promise. What was I thinking – not ‘tagging’ Tom Lunt, master of the obscure song. Tom, I bet a dollar that this is the kind of exercise in the macabre that you might appreciate. Please consider yourself tagged. Finally, if I didn’t tag you but you’re dying to share the playlist you’ll never hear, feel free to leave it in a comment.]