The pros made their picks; now you make yours

By Mickey O'Connor
Updated March 16, 2001 at 05:00 AM EST
Judy Garland, The Wizard of Oz
Credit: Judy Garland: Bettman/Corbis

The NEA and the Recording Industry Association of America asked 200 musicians, critics, and industry execs to pick their favorite ”Songs of the Century.” The resulting top 100 list is a quirky compilation that ricochets between genres, bestowing similar praise upon Billie Holiday, Nirvana, Gene Autry, and the Village People. It’s as if you made a mix tape with you dad, grandad, and… you get the picture.

Critics have blasted the list for its ”old white guy” slant, and indeed what’s missing is almost as notable as what made the cut. Among the snubs: Madonna, Miles Davis, Janis Joplin, Sinatra, Hendrix, Patsy Cline, the Who, and Elton John. Take a look — and then tell us what you think.

1 ”Over the Rainbow,” Judy Garland
2 ”White Christmas,” Bing Crosby
3 ”This Land Is Your Land,” Woody Guthrie
4 ”Respect,” Aretha Franklin
5 ”American Pie,” Don Mclean
6 ”Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” The Andrews Sisters
7 ”West Side Story,” Original Cast
8 ”Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” Billy Murray
9 ”You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’,” The Righteous Brothers
10 ”The Entertainer,” Scott Joplin
11 ”In the Mood,” Glenn Miller Orchestra
12 ”Rock Around the Clock,” Bill Haley & the Comets
13 ”When the Saints Go Marching In,” Louis Armstrong
14 ”You Are My Sunshine,” Jimmie Davis
15 ”Mack the Knife,” Bobby Darin
16 ”Satisfaction,” The Rolling Stones
17 ”Take the ‘A’ Train,” Duke Ellington Orchestra
18 ”Blueberry Hill,” Fats Domino
19 ”God Bless America,” Kate Smith
20 ”Stars and Stripes Forever,” Sousa’s Band
21 ”I Heard It Through the Grapevine,” Marvin Gaye
22 ”Dock of the Bay,” Otis Redding
23 ”I Left My Heart in San Francisco,” Tony Bennett
24 ”Good Vibrations,” The Beach Boys
25 ”Stand By Me,” Ben E. King
26 ”Stormy Weather,” Lena Horne
27 ”Johnny B. Goode,” Chuck Berry
28 ”I Want To Hold Your Hand,” The Beatles
29 ”Midnight Train to Georgia,” Gladys Knight & the Pips
30 ”Imagine,” John Lennon
31 ”Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” Gene Autry
32 ”The Twist,” Chubby Checker
33 ”Happy Trails,” Roy Rogers & Dale Evans
34 ”Your Cheatin’ Heart,” Hank Williams
35 ”Swing Low Sweet Chariot,” Fisk Jubilee Singers
36 ”The Sound of Music,” Original Cast
37 ”’Round Midnight,” Thelonius Monk
38 ”What’s Love Got To Do With It,” Tina Turner
39 ”Over There,” The American Quartet
40 ”Stardust,” Hoagy Carmichael
41 ”Ain’t Misbehavin’,” Fats Waller
42 ”Georgia on My Mind,” Ray Charles
43 ”Oh Pretty Woman,” Roy Orbison
44 ”Every Breath You Take,” The Police
45 ”My Girl,” The Temptations
46 ”Hotel California,” The Eagles
47 ”Happy Days Are Here Again,” Ben Selvin Orchestra
48 ”Stand By Your Man,” Tammy Wynette
49 ”Take Five,” Dave Brubeck
50 ”America the Beautiful,” Louise Homer
51 ”When A Man Loves A Woman,” Percy Sledge
52 ”Light My Fire,” The Doors
53 ”Stairway to Heaven,” Led Zeppelin
54 ”Sweet Georgia Brown,” Ben Bernie Orchestra
55 ”When You Wish Upon A Star,” Cliff Edwards
56 ”Yesterday / Act Naturally,” The Beatles
57 ”Louie Louie,” The Kingsmen
58 ”God Bless the Child,” Billie Holiday
59 ”Born in the USA,” Bruce Springsteen
60 ”The Girl From Ipanema,” Stan Getz / Astrud Gilberto
61 ”I Walk the Line,” Johnny Cash
62 ”The Star Spangled Banner,” John McCormick
63 ”O Happy Day,” The Edwin Hawkins Singers
64 ”Great Balls Of Fire,” Jerry Lee Lewis
65 ”What’s Going On,” Marvin Gaye
66 ”Oklahoma!” Original Cast
67 ”Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah,” Johnny Mercer
68 ”Don’t Be Cruel / Hound Dog,” Elvis Presley
69 ”St. Louis Blues,” W.C. Handy
70 ”Yankee Doodle,” Vess Ossman
71 ”California Dreamin,”’ The Mamas & Papas
72 ”On the Road Again,” Willie Nelson
73 ”Auld Lang Syne,” Frank Stanley
74 ”Summertime,” Sidney Bechet
75 ”Theme From ‘Shaft,”’ Isaac Hayes
76 ”Beat It,” Michael Jackson
77 ”Sentimental Journey,” Les Brown Orchestra
78 ”Blue Suede Shoes,” Carl Perkins
79 ”The Sounds of Silence,” Simon & Garfunkel
80 ”Smells Like Teen Spirit,” Nirvana
81 ”It Had To Be You,” Isham Jones Orchestra
82 ”Minnie the Moocher,” Cab Calloway
83 ”Sixteen Tons,” Tennessee Ernie Ford
84 ”What a Wonderful World,” Louis Armstrong
85 ”Fire and Rain,” James Taylor
86 ”Y.M.C.A.,” The Village People
87 ”Heartbreak Hotel,” Elvis Presley
88 ”King of the Road,” Roger Miller
89 ”I Will Survive,” Gloria Gaynor
90 ”Ave Maria,” Marian Anderson
91 ”Begin the Beguine,” Artie Shaw Orchestra
92 ”Like a Rolling Stone,” Bob Dylan
93 ”Stop in the Name of Love,” The Supremes
94 ”Stayin’ Alive,” The Bee Gees
95 ”1999,” Prince
96 ”Please Remember Me,” Tim McGraw
97 ”Porgy and Bess,” Original Cast
98 ”Back in the Saddle Again,” Gene Autry
99 ”Shake, Rattle and Roll,” Joe Turner
100 ”In the Still of the Night,” The Five Satins

What — no Britney?! Who would make your list?