Epic Songs of 1973: AXS TV’s The Top 10 Revealed

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Two of the songs in the “Epic Songs of ’73” episode of The Top Ten Revealed are from these classic albums

A new episode of AXS TV’s countdown show, The Top Ten Revealed, airs on the network each Sunday night at 9 p.m. Eastern/6 p.m. Pacific this summer. Each week, series host and executive producer Katie Daryl puts the spotlight on a different theme, spanning a diverse range of topics covering the best guitar intros, Vietnam-era anthems and more, featuring a rotating panel of all-star experts.

The topic for season two’s second episode is “Epic Songs of ’73” and Best Classic Bands is pleased to share the choices with its readers. Panelists featured on the episode include musicians Lita Ford, Eddie Money and Kenny Aronoff.

Note: The episode premiered on July 8 will air again on Thursday, July 12 at 8 p.m. Eastern.

Watch a teaser clip from the episode


10. “Reelin’ in the Years” by Steely Dan

The second single from the band’s Can’t Buy a Thrill album reached #11 on the pop charts. And it’s as well known for Donald Fagen’s memorable vocal as it is for Elliott Randall’s guitar solo, which Jimmy Page has called his favorite. “I thought… ‘Wow!’… if Pagey likes it,” says Caleb Quaye, a longtime studio and recording guitarist with Elton John, among many others, “I better check this out. It’s just a signature work.”

Steely Dan ultimately became FM radio favorites but not before the album’s first singles, “Do it Again,” and “Reelin’ in the Years,” scored with Top 40 programmers, providing the band with two of their signature hits almost immediately.

9. “Ramblin’ Man” by the Allman Brothers Band

For their first full studio album following the deaths of Duane Allman in 1971 and Berry Oakley in 1972, the band ultimately delivered their most successful studio album in 1973. “Losing a band member is really hard,” says the Marshall Tucker Band’s lead vocalist Doug Gray, who knows all too well. “It takes a lot out of you.”

Though the Allman Brothers Band was rarely embraced by Top 40 radio, “Ramblin’ Man,” written by Dickey Betts, was a huge exception, reaching #2 on the Hot 100.

8. “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” by Elton John

The title cut from his 1973 double album is so associated with Sir Elton that he’s named his farewell tour after it. Quaye said: “Being onstage and playing with Elton was absolute magic,” said Quaye. “The crowd would be singing so loud, we couldn’t hear ourselves play sometimes.” The song began John’s streak of eight straight Top 5 U.S. singles, including four that hit #1.

7. “Turn the Page” by Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band

The song, about a musician on the road, was first released on Seger’s 1973 album, Back in ’72, but was never released as a single. Three years later, the audience favorite was included on the double album, Live Bullet. It’s distinguished by the saxophone from band member Alto Reed.

6. “No More Mr. Nice Guy” by Alice Cooper

The Alice Cooper Group’s follow-up to 1972’s humongous School’s Out was 1973’s Billion Dollar Babies. Among the album’s four successful singles was this semi-autobiographical one co-written with bandmate Michael Bruce.

Related: Our Album Rewind of Cooper’s #1 breakthrough

5. “Desperado” by Eagles

It’s long been a fan favorite but don’t go looking for it on a list of the band’s biggest singles. The title cut of their second album, with the gorgeous vocal by Don Henley, was never released as a single. Henley claims to be displeased with his vocal on the recording and credits Linda Ronstadt’s 1974 cover version for its popularity (which perhaps explains its inclusion on the group’s Their Greatest Hits (1971-1975) album.

4. “Love Reign O’er Me” by The Who

It closes the album, and is perhaps the centerpiece of Pete Townshend’s ambitious 1973 rock opera, Quadrophenia. The song has been a concert showpiece for singer Roger Daltrey who, after a stunning one-minute instrumental passage midway through, returns to belt an extended “Loooovvvvvvvve”.

3. “Dream On” by Aerosmith

The song that first introduced the band to audiences had an interesting path to success. It was first released in 1973 as a single from their self-titled debut and although it reached #1 in their hometown of Boston, it stalled nationally at #59. A few years later, with two other albums having paved the way for success, the power ballad was reissued, this time climbing to #6, and remaining their biggest hit for over a decade before their 1980’s resurgence surpassed it.

2. “Simple Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd

It’s easily overshadowed by “Sweet Home Alabama” and “Free Bird,” but although Skynyrd’s “Simple Man” was never released as a single, the song from the band’s 1973 debut has always struck a chord with their fans.

1. “Time” by Pink Floyd

The Dark Side of the Moon was recorded at London’s Abbey Road Studios and released on March 1, 1973. It sold big then and over time it sold some more, as new generations discovered it. It’s now the third biggest album of all-time (following Michael Jackson’s Thriller and AC/DC’s Back in Black). “Time” is one of many standouts from the epic album.

Related: Top radio hits of 1973

Other categories that The Top Ten Revealed will uncover this season include “One Hit Wonders” (July 15), “Sports Jams” (July 22) and “Rock Star Collaborations” (Aug. 5).

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