Top 10 Maria McKee Songs

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Top 10 Maria McKee Songs
Top 10 Tuesday

It was my 16th Summer when I picked up a Lone Justice album, their self-titled debut, at a small record store by the beach. I’d not heard of them before, but a pretty boy with ocean blue eyes who worked behind the counter that afternoon put them on while I was wandering the aisles with a friend. Although it sounded more “country” than my taste in 1985 usually ventured into, Maria’s voice got my attention. The boy called them “punk country”, and went on to say that the album didn’t do them justice (pun-intended he’d laughed, batting those blue eyes at my friend and me flirtatiously) and that we JUST HAD TO SEE THEM LIVE. He thought we were older than our teenage years, and we adored him for that.

Maria McKee Top 10 LJ debut album

Did I buy it because of the cute boy, or Maria’s voice? Probably the former, not that it matters much now as I kept loving the band, and Maria when she went solo, long after that afternoon in the beach adjacent record store. And I never saw blue eyed record boy again.

Shelter would come around the following year. It was a little less country, a little more mainstream, enough so that their videos played on MTV occasionally. I think it was around the releases of this album that they appeared on Saturday Night Live. The title song was their big hit, and though I did love it, it was the song “Wheels” that became my favorite track. It is so heartbreakingly beautiful. At the time it reminded me of a boy I had loved who was always just out of reach.

Maria’s song in Pulp Fiction blew me away, a song I must have put on twenty or so mix tapes, and a gazillion playlists since. It was on the tour to support You Gotta Sin to be Saved that I finally got to see Maria live. She was incredible. I remembered what that boy had once said as I stood there in awe, and I had to agree, no album could ever do her voice “justice“.

Maria McKee Top 10 Tuesday Live

Top 10 Maria McKee Songs

1. “Wheels”
from the album, Shelter (Lone Justice)

“Wish you’d never even loved me.”

2. “If Love is a Red Dress (Hang Me in Rags)”,
from the soundtrack to Pulp Fiction

“I played on the table,
you held something back.
If love is Aces,
give me the Jack.”

3. “Only Once”
from the album, You Gotta Sin to be Saved

“I’ve never been obliged to stay in one place for too long.
There’s a bad seed bred inside me and it keeps me movin’ on.
Have I ever been persuaded to give it up and stay home?
Was I tempted by an angel?
Only once,
only once.”

4. “Dixie Storms”
from the album, Shelter (Lone Justice)

“And the smoke on the street,
makes me wonder why I stay away,
from those gentle Dixie storms.”

5. “My Lonely Sad Eyes”
from the album, You Gotta Sin to be Saved

“Fill me my cup and I’ll drink your sparkling wine.
Pretend that everything is fine,
till I see your sad eyes.”

Maria McKee Top 10 Beach

6. “I’ve Forgotten What it was in You (That Put the Need in Me)”
from the album, Self-Titled

Well, look into my eyes,
and tell me what you see, darling.”

7. “Shelter”
from the album, Shelter (Lone Justice)

“Disillusion has an edge so sharp,
it tears at your soul and leaves a stain upon your heart.
I need you to wash mine clean.
You’ve felt it too,
and you need me.”

8. “I’m Gonna Soothe You”
from the album, You Gotta Sin to Get Saved

“Don’t worry,
I won’t do you any harm,
my touch is gentle,
my body is warm.”

9. “Opelousas (Sweet Relief)”
from the album, Sweet Relief: A Benefit for Victoria Williams

“Some find it in a bathtub,
or a back rub,
the clothes they wear,
or just in the air,
in the food they eat,
it’s something sweet –
some sweet relief.”

10. “You Gotta Sin to Get Saved”
from the album, You Gotta Sin to Get Saved

“Well it’s not that I don’t love you,
I’ll love you, honey, ’til I die.
But I could never be your bride ’til I tame my wicked side.”

Maria McKee BW TOP 10

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