Bob Seger in 14 Songs
Since I grew up Detroit in the 1980s and rode exclusively in the backseat of cars locked in to classic rock radio, Bob Seger feels burned into the very fabric of my DNA. So much of his work ceases to be “songs” and elevates to the level of the collective subconscious.
“Night Moves” feels like it has existed for a thousand years, a song so perfect that it seems unable to be “written” as much as it was divined from a higher being. All that being said, I was completely unaware of Seger’s pre-Silver Bullet Band material. Seemed like ALL of those songs, which were certified chart-topping hits in Detroit, were just washed clean from radio programmers’ consciousness. So I went through a rite of passage for a vinyl-eager Southeastern Michigan inhabitant. I’d comb through the used record bins and find as many releases as I could by Bob Seger and the Last Heard or the Bob Seger System. Touchstones like “Ramblin Gamblin Man” and “2 + 2 =?” served as signifiers to my classic rock parents, who would then turn around and sing along to these songs, word for word.
I am ecstatic that the Seger camp has finally made the Ramblin Gamblin Man album available again for the first time in some 40 years and hope that even more gems are being prepped for re-release and re-discovery. This playlist highlights my favorite Seger moments available for streaming and whether a die-hard fan or new to the game, I think just about everyone can find a way to get into it. Enjoy.
Ben Blackwell is a failed musician, a frustrated author and a mediocre father/husband. He prides himself on the successes he’s found overseeing vinyl operations for Third Man Records since its inception in 2009.
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