Top Ten Albums of 1968

By Steve Klein


It is true I know a great deal about the history of rock and roll, but I don't know everything. I did actually dream that someone called me as their phone-a-friend for "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" on a pop music question from the past.

 

Here is my Top Ten list of album releases for 1968:

1. The Beatles, The White Album
2. The Byrds, Sweetheart of the Rodeo
3. Jimi Hendrix, Electric Ladyland
4. The Band, Music From Big Pink
5. Johnny Cash, Live from Folsom Prison
6. Bob Dylan, John Wesley Harding
7. Van Morrison, Astral Weeks
8. Traffic, Traffic
9. Tommy James and the Shondells, Crimson and Clover
10. Cream, Wheels of Fire

 

You may also remember the following songs from '68 blaring out from your car's AM radio:

(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay; In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida; Magic Bus; Going Up the Country; Suzie-Q; Born to Be Wild; Mister Bojangles; Wichita Lineman; Bend Me Shape Me; Hush, and Green Tambourine.

It's funny how many of these song lines have been inserted into television commercials aimed at baby boomers. Chances are you heard the short version of Iron Butterfly's In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida since the longer version covered the entire album side.

In the Midwest after dark we teenagers tuned into WLS-Chicago, KAAY-Little Rock and KOMA-Oklahoma City to explore the new music that was hitting the scene. As the evening morphed into late night, DJ's would experiment with longer songs and off-the-wall bands you would never hear on the Top 40 stations. This eventually gave way to the FM stations and the genesis of AOR, album-oriented rock music.

True to the spirit of the 60's, here is a list of current artists you might find in my CD changer.

Michael Franti and Spearhead
Ben Harper
Gov't Mule
Ani Difranco
Steve Earle
Neil Young (still relevant!)
Todd Snider
Billy Bragg
Damian Marley
Railroad Earth
Kaki King
Flobots
Joseph Arthur
Wilco
Black Keys
My Morning Jacket