I have always been a sucker for a good ballad. From the time I was a little girl, this was my favorite sort of song, and I could listen to a good story song over and over.
The best lyrics tell a good story. Sure, there is a place for a good dance song, but it isn’t as difficult to write as poetic lyrics that also tell a story. The artists above are masters of it, but there have been more recent examples.
As I mentioned yesterday on Here’s The Clean, the master storyteller was Harry Chapin. His way of painting portraits of people with a song is simply amazing. From “Taxi” to “A Better Place to Be,” you feel like you know the people he was talking about personally. This is the mark of a true master, and something I would love to emulate in my own work.
Of course, this list is by no means complete. Do you have a favorite that isn’t listed? Feel free to leave a name in the comments. I am always on the lookout for a good story song.