Which is the best year in music?

Which is the best year in music?
Authored By John Nicholson

There are many things written about which is the best year in music. To a degree it’s a bit of a pointless argument, because you can probably pick any year from 1966 to 1976 and make a convincing argument. Obviously, it depends on what your taste is, to a degree.
A cursory glance at the American #1 albums reveal how great a year it was. There were chart-toppers from The Moody Blues, Carly Simon, War, Elton John, Alice Cooper, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, the Beatles, Wings, George Harrison, Chicago, Jethro Tull, Rolling Stones and Allman Brothers. I mean how does that compare to any other year? It’s pretty impressive and that’s just the chart toppers.
Even more remarkable is that the majority of those records became regarded as ‘classic’ like Billion Dollar Babies and Houses Of The Holy and Brothers And Sisters. I’ve informally assessed my 10,000 record collection and I have more 1973 records than any other year.
It’s the same in the UK with highly charting albums by Strawbs, Focus, Free, Uriah Heep and Status Quo to name just a few. You could have a brilliant record collection just from 1973 when you think even modest sellers like Best of Mountain reached just #72 in America. Even relatively unpopular albums were great. Still Alive And Well by Johnny Winter made just #22 but is excellent, the title track, one of his favourites.
It was also probably the year prog rock reached a peak with Genesis ‘Selling England By The Pound’ and Pink Floyd ‘Dark Side Of The Moon’ and ELP, ‘Brain Salad Surgery’. All brilliant records, but there are also more obscure releases by the likes of Fruupp, Ash Ra Tempel, Eloy, and Tangerine Dream and many more, not to mention Tubular Bells.
Of course, great records came out all the time from the late 60s to mid-seventies, but in 1973 it was a veritable blizzard and forms the core of my taste in rock music. I bet you’ve got a favourite year that your music life revolves around.

1973 Tees

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