Will Hart's Contra O'Reilly blog contains the following brief post.:
Happy Birthday, Van Morrison
My top 5 favourite Van Morrison songs; 5) Tore Down a la Rimbaud 4) Astral Weeks 3) Into the Mystic 2) Rough God Goes Riding 1) Aryan Mist
That's it. Naturally readers contributed their own lists. Some interesting "nominations" ensued plus the usual evidence that the internet is the refuge of the bizarre. Here are some of them:
dmarks: I mainly think of Brown Eyed Girl when I think of his name. Aryan Mist? Sounds like a Nazi soft drink from the name!
Marcus: The Burning Ground, Queen of the Slipstream, Full Force Gale, Jackie Wilson Said, Listen to the Lion, Cleaning Windows arrrr too many favourites to list.
Rational Nation USA: Moon Dance, another that rates right it the top. IMO
The CDM: Sorry, when I think of Van Morrison, I think of NyQuil with abundant headache side effects.
Marcus: Curious dmarks: If Van is a "mediocre rock star", who do you think is worth listening to?
Will "take no prisoners" Hart: Yeah, that one kind of caught me off-guard, too, Marcus. I guess that we all have hugely different tastes in music here. I would concur with your list and add Dweller on the Threshold, Domino, Caravan, Saint Dominic's Preview, Irish Heartbeat, and his version of Purple Heather (from Hard Nose the Highway). Lord have mercy!
Rusty Shackelford: I have to agree with dmarks on this one, I also feel Morrison is mediocre...now,Joe Cocker...that's a horse of a different colour.
Will "take no prisoners" Hart: Van Morrison - "the greatest living male white vocalist" Downbeat, 1977..............."In the often superficial realm of popular music, where the word 'artist' takes a constant beating, Van Morrison is the real thing. A musical giant whose importance far outreaches his commercial impact, Morrison has steadfastly followed his Celtic-soul muse during the last three decades with often remarkable results." Rolling Stone, 1990..............."One of the most acclaimed and influential singer-songwriters of his time." Anthony Mason, "CBC This Morning" 2009...............Sorry, I'm probably a lot more passionate about this than I am about politics.
w-dervish: Will: the greatest living male white vocalist. Greatest living male singer/songwriter: Billy Joel. Brown Eyed Girl is the only VM song mentioned that I've ever heard. The other titles others have mentioned may be made-up for all I know. They are all totally unfamiliar to me. One thing I will comment on though: "Van" is a cool name. My favourite "Van" is Van Jones.
Will "take no prisoners" Hart: Van Morrison isn't a commercial artist. He's a true artist and performs a music that far outstrips the idiocy of today's shallow audiences. It doesn't surprise me one bit that most people have never heard of Astral Weeks and Listen to the Lion.
Rusty Shackelford: Van Morrison is your typical Irish drunk.
Marcus: Rusty: Joe Cocker is good. I would point out that Cocker does a lot of re-makes whereas Van Morrison does original material...I also hated that the Band broke up, but Robbie Robertson's solo work is stellar.
Will "take no prisoners" Hart: There were/are a lot of drunk geniuses, Russ; Ernest Hemingway, Arthur Rimbaud, Dylan Thomas, Montgomery Clift, Richard Burton, Jack Kerouac, Kris Kristofferson, Modest Mussorgsky, George Jones, etc.. And there's nothing at all typical about Van Morrison's poetry and music.
Rusty Shackelford: I think we get it Will....you're a Van Morrison fan.