The White Stripes

TrackAlbum
AstroThe White Stripes
I'm Lonely (But I Ain't That Lonely Yet)Get Behind Me Satan
300 M.P.H. Torrential Outpour BluesIcky Thump
Hello OperatorDe Stijl
DoThe White Stripes
Hotel YorbaWhite Blood Cells
The Air Near My FingersElephant
Instinct BluesGet Behind Me Satan
Truth Doesn't Make A NoiseDe Stijl
Ball and BiscuitElephant

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Contributor: Fi Stimpson

The White Stripes grabbed my attention back in 2001 when I heard this little song called Hotel Yorba, which is still one of my absolute favourites now. Of course, I was two years late to the party, but I didn’t waste any time in checking out the two albums prior to White Blood Cells.

I love Blues music, I love Indie, and this pair had buckets of both. The White Stripes consisted of husband and wife duo Jack and Meg White. Meg contributed with her raw, simple, punky drums and percussion, and Jack brought along his Blues influenced guitar, quirky vocals and intelligent lyrics. He’s an admirer of musicians like Blind Willie McTell and Son House, and that is very evident in the music he produces himself.

I went to see them gig, and was in love with this little yet huge band from Detroit. I’ve picked a good variety of songs that throw a spotlight on all six albums. If I had to pick a favourite song by The White Stripes it would be Ball and Biscuit. This is a song I could listen to all day, every day, and never get bored. When you hear it live, it blows you away. It is the one song I would always recommend to anyone if they had never spent time listening to The White Stripes. It encompasses everything that they are, and it doesn’t fail to deliver.

The White Stripes didn’t last forever, of course – Jack and Meg unfortunately split as a couple, and later ceased performing together too. Jack had already started to explore new musical dimensions, experiencing relative success with The Raconteurs, and towards the end of The White Stripes’ career, he formed a group called The Dead Weather. He’s had an extensive solo career on top of all of this, and I’ll be covering that in a future Toppermost.

The White Stripes’ music has remained fresh, and relevant, and will continue to do so.

 

The White Stripes official site

The White Stripes biography (iTunes)

Fi’s toppermost 10 is in descending order of preference. She tweets from @musicvstheworld and writes about music and new bands at her website, Music vs. The World.

TopperPost #222

6 Comments

  1. Ian Ashleigh
    Mar 13, 2014

    Well, well, well. My brother raved about White Stripes and I just didn’t get them. I’ve listened through these ten and completely changed my mind. Many thanks Fi.

  2. Stephen Lawrence
    Mar 13, 2014

    Nice piece Fi, you’ve just reminded me to fill a couple of gaps in my collection (I’m missing “Icky Thump” & “Get Behind Me Satan”). Though the breakthrough album “White Blood Cells” is my favourite. Many Thanks.

  3. David Lewis
    Mar 14, 2014

    ‘Seven nation army’ is one of the songs of the century, and perhaps the last great rock song. Perhaps. Of course we all know it, so it’s not necessary to be on the list, but the White Stripes are a band who had more than the one classic song. Great list.

  4. Kasper Nijsen
    Mar 14, 2014

    Good list, and an excellent reason to revisit my old favourites. I don’t listen to their first (The White Stripes) and last (Icky Thump) album that much anymore but still think the four in between are all great. Jack’s visceral blues and feeling for tradition are always a joy. Perhaps if I could add one song to your list, I’d go for their Son House cover ‘Death Letter’ .

  5. David Lewis
    Mar 14, 2014

    Actually, one I would try to slip in is the cover of Jolene they did on Under Blackpool Lights.

  6. Keith Shackleton
    Mar 14, 2014

    Icky Thump is the album I go back to now more than the others, but at this time in my life I’m a Stripes heretic and I’m thinking “Please, if you’d had a bass player it would have been so much better.” Steven McDonald of Redd Kross got it right.

    Just putting that one out there. Sowing a few seeds. You do what you can.

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