Is That a Woman or a Man? My 25 Favorite Bob Seger Songs

11.21 bob seger in the 70s
Bob Seger in the Seventies

Now that Son #1 and his lovely wife have moved back to Indiana, all three Keller men will be able to attend one of favorite wastes of time, Black Friday Record Store Day. And, although this Record Store Day is no way as popular as the one in the Spring, you can still find the occasional special release. Personally, I have my eyes on a special release of the hard-to-find Richard Hell punk classic ‘Blank Generation’ album. Additionally, Omnivore Records is releasing a vinyl edition of the Raspberries’ double CD edition of ‘Live Pop Art’, the in-concert recording of the band’s 2007 reunion tour. Only, this vinyl release is a triple album with a couple songs not on the CDs, and each record in the triple-album release will be a different color vinyl (one is red, blue and yellow, sticking with the primary colors). Finally, of utmost importance for this Cheap Trick is to find the RSD release of their new Christmas album on vinyl. The album is called ‘Christmas, Christmas’ and only 2000 are being printed. Unfortunately, I have the CD and my beloved rockers from Rockford, Illinois, really stunk up the place with this album. On the other hand, only 2000 LPs are being printed, so this could be an oddity in one’s Cheap Trick collections. Other releases of interest are Nate Rateliff & the Night Sweats have a 7″ Christmas release of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” and “Santa Baby.” Also, Rush is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the release of ‘A Farewell to Kings” by releasing a 7″ single of “Closer to the Hearts. U2 fans might be interested in a 12″ single of a song from their upcoming album ‘Songs of Experience”. Queen is putting out a 12″ single of their own in honor of its 40th anniversary, “We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions”. And, finally, Frank Zappa has a 12″ single of one of his bizarre songs that’s neither “Valley Girl”, “Bobby Brown” nor any of his other inappropriately titled songs such as “Broken Hearts Are for A$$holes”. Not sure if the last one will interest Son #2 for his RSD Frank Zappa collection that he has going. I do know Son #1 and me are both looking for the Richard Hell album; so, I hope there are two copies at the store. If you want to see a full list of releases, check out the Record Store Day website or just show up to your favorite independent record store and browse.

Today, I have decided to tackle an artist for whom I have much respect, though of whom I am lukewarm fan. Obviously, this artist has quite a following to this day, as the man continues to sell-out tour dates. Additionally, this man has sold over 10 million copies of his first ‘Greatest Hits’ album alone, making it the biggest-selling compilation of the first decade of the 21st century, beating out The Beatles ‘1’ and Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers’ ‘Greatest Hits’. From 1976 to 1982, Bob Seger had quite a run, with several Top 40 hits, a number one song (“Shakedown” in 1987), a number one album (Against the Wind in 1981), and five straight albums that sold in excess of five million copies a piece. In 2004, Bob Seger was finally inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

11.21 bob seger today
Bob Seger today

Prior to the winning streak that Seger went on that began with his double-album ‘Live Bullet’ in 1976 through his aforementioned chart-topping single from the ‘Beverly Hills Cop Soundtrack’ in 1987, Seger was a well-respected journeyman heartland rocker. Back in the mid-Seventies, I remember reading an article in which the author hoped that these five relatively unknown singer/songwriters would finally get a break and have hit songs and albums. Of the five, four are now in the RRHOF: Seger, Petty, Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Costello and one of the stars of the movie ‘This Is 40’, Graham Parker. That is now quite a list, but at the time, few had heard of these budding rockers. Now, we are familiar with all of them.

11.21 bob seger - greatest hits
The biggest selling compilation of The Aughts

This past Friday, Bob Seger just released his latest album called ‘I Knew You When’, during which Bob is looking backward at his life and career. He even ends the deluxe edition of the album with a tribute song to his longtime friend and member of the Eagles, the late Glenn Frey. Does Seger’s new album stand up to his classic albums from the 70s and 80s? No. But, it’s not an embarrassment either. It is a solid addition to his extensive catalog, and he is not covering songs from the Great American songbook, as Rod Stewart did. No, the man stuck to what he does best, and what he does best is that type of rock that has a touch of country in it that keeps his fans engaged.

11.21 bob seger - i knew you when
The two versions of Bob Seger’s latest album, ‘I Knew You When’. Pay the extra $2 for the deluxe version so you can get three extra songs.

So, today, in the next-to-last blog post before Thanksgiving weekend, let’s take a look at My Top 25 Favorite Bob Seger Songs. Let the countdown begin!

  1. “Turn the Page” (Live Bullet, 1976) – This song was so ubiquitous in Central Indiana that we used to sing it at work when I was in high school and college, wherever work was. This is Seger’s “Stairway to Heaven”.
  2. “Travelin’ Man”/ “Beautiful Loser” (Live Bullet, 1976)
  3. “Even Now” (The Distance, 1982) – This is a totally underrated rocker from Seger. This should have been a HUGE hit.
  4. “Mainstreet” (Night Moves, 1976) – I love the sorrowful sound of the guitar in this song.
  5. “Katmandu” (Live Bullet, 1976)
  6. “Feels like a Number” (Stranger in Town, 1978) – If this isn’t the theme song of the working and middle classes, then everyone has totally missed the point!
  7. “Tryin’ to Love My Life Without You” (Nine Tonight, 1981)
  8. “We’ve Got Tonight” (Stranger in Town, 1978) – I dropped this song because Kenny Rogers and Sheena Easton totally ruined it for me.
  9. “Hollywood Nights” (Stranger in Town, 1978)
  10. “Night Moves” (Night Moves, 1976)
  11. “Still the Same” (Stranger in Town, 1978)
  12. “Rock and Roll Never Forgets” (Night Moves, 1976)
  13. “Fire Lake” (Against the Wind, 1980)
  14. “Her Strut” (Against the Wind, 1980)
  15. “Sunspot Baby” (Night Moves, 1976)
  16. “Shame on the Moon” (The Distance, 1982)
  17. “Against the Wind” (Against the Wind, 1980)
  18. “Old Time Rock & Roll” (Stranger in Town, 1978) – I counted Tom Cruise’s underwear dance scene in ‘Risky Business’ against this song. Sorry, I am NOT a Cruise fan and never have been. His characters all seem to be the same…Tom Cruise.
  19. “The Fire Down Below” (Night Moves, 1976)
  20. “Betty Lou’s Gettin’ Out Tonight” (Against the Wind, 1980)
  21. “Shakedown” (Beverly Hills Cop II OST, 1987) – I like Seger songs without song doctors getting involved. Sure, it paid off for the man with his only #1 hit, but, much like Cheap Trick with “The Flame”, at what cost? This is an example as to why the whole music industry is in the garbage can right now.
  22. “Roll Me Away” (The Distance, 1982)
  23. “You’ll Accomp’ny Me” (Against the Wind, 1980)
  24. “The Fire Inside” (The Fire Inside, 1991)
  25. “Like a Rock” (Like a Rock, 1985) – I know that our rock heroes need to make some cash on the side and that commercial usage is very lucrative. But, the length that this song was used forced me to drop this song to the bottom of the list. After hearing the song five-to-ten times per athletic event over what seemed like 20 years was too much exposure for the song. And, if you think about it, who wants a truck that acts like a rock? Rocks just sit there!

There you have it! My 25 Favorite Seger songs. See you tomorrow – Same Bat-Time, Same Bat-Channel!

Author: ifmyalbumscouldtalk

I am just a long-time music fan who used to be a high school science teacher and a varsity coach of several high school athletic teams. Before that, I worked as a medical technologist at three hospitals in their labs, mainly as a microbiologist. I am retired/disabled (Failed Back Surgery Syndrome), and this is my attempt to remain a human. Additionally, I am a serious vinyl aficionado, with a CD addiction and a love of reading about rock history. Finally, I am a fan of Prince, Cheap Trick, Tom Petty, R.E.M., Hall & Oates, Springsteen, Paul Weller & his bands and Power Pop music.

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