The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Happy birthday to me: My 60-something all time favorite songs (as of today) with youtube presence, playable and in no order

Randy Newman Old Man


Tobin Sprout To My Beloved Martha


Destroyer An Actor’s Revenge


Sebadoh Brand New Love


Pinback Talby


The Velvet Underground White Light/White Heat


Nina Simone Pirate Jenny


Wire From the Nursery


The Quick Teacher’s Pet


Pink Floyd Lucifer Sam


Pavement Grounded


Butthole Surfers Sweat Loaf


Cheap Trick Auf Wiedersehen


Captain Beefheart & the Magic Band Big Eyed Beans From Venus


Guided by Voices Johnny Appleseed


Laura Nyro Gibsom Street


Alexander O’Neal Criticize


Drive Like Jehu Here Come The Rome Plows


Sonic Youth Schizophrenia


Ramones I Don’t Wanna Go Down To The Basement


Donovan Epistle to Dippy


Superchunk Untied


Eno The True Wheel


Airport 5 Stifled Man Casino


The Shangri-Las Past, Present And Future


Gram Parsons $1000 Wedding


Loudon Wainwright III Kick in the Head


Andy Pratt Inside Me Wants Out


Kurt Weill/Bertolt Brecht Song of the Insufficiency of Human Endeavor

Play it here


David Ackles Midnight Carousel


Buffy Sainte-Marie My Country Tis of Thy People You’re Dying


The Rolling Stones We Love You


Spacemen 3 OD Catastrophe


The Jesus And Mary Chain Some Candy Talking


The Melvins Joan of Arc


The Dickies Fan Mail


Xiu Xiu Blacks


Family Voyage


New Pornographers Use It


Sparks Mickey Mouse


The Cramps Garbage Man


Neil Young Tired Eyes


Cat Power Nude as the News


Swervedriver Rave Down


Björk Hyperballad


Spirit Aren’t You Glad


The Left Banke She May Call You Up Tonight


ABBA Knowing Me, Knowing You


Magazine The Light Pours Out of Me


The Flaming Lips The Spiderbite Song


Jefferson Airplane Two Heads


Bow Wow Wow Chihuahua


Husker Du Divide And Conquer


Vår Pictures of Today/Victorial


Wall Of Voodoo Factory


Lou Reed Sad Song


Fleetwood Mac The Green Manalishi


The Fall Smile


Sebadoh As the World Dies, the Eyes of God Grow Bigger


Roy Wood & Electric Light Orchestra Look at Me Now


Incredible String Band Very Cellular Song


Dwight Twilley Looking for the Magic


The Flamin’ Groovies Slow Death


The Groundhogs Cherry Red


Echo And The Bunnymen Over The Wall


The Kinks Susannah’s Still Alive


Van Dyke Parks The All Golden


Fugazi Rend It


Drunken Boat Pool


Alice Cooper Halo of Flies


S.O.S. Band Just Be Good to Me


Chic My Feet Keep Dancing


Tricky Diss Never (Dig Up We history)


Nick Drake Black Eyed Dog


Tim Buckley Pleasant Street


My Bloody Valentine Cigarette in Your Bed


Ride Vapour Trail


Mad River The War Goes On


John Cale Engine


Leonard Cohen Dress Rehearsal Rag


Colin Newman Life On Deck


Scott Walker + Sunn O))) Brando


Blink-182 Stay Together For The Kids


Gang of Four I Found That Essence Rare


Robert Pollard Far-out Crops


Serge Lama Je suis malade




p.s. Hey. Traditionally, when my birthday comes around, I use the blog as a place to self-indulge. Sometimes I’ve foisted big posts about my heroes like Bresson or Robert Pollard on you, and sometimes I’ve done what I’m doing today — go through my favorite all-time songs list, update it, check to see which ones have video presence, and make a post. Not sure what I expect you do do with it, but there are some awfully great songs up there, and I suppose they’re a way to for you look into my psyche and soul or something, if you’re curious. Anyway, somehow enjoy? ** David Ehrenstein, Buches should be so lucky, ha ha. ** David, Hi. I like fireworks, but I always find they’re always huge disappointments relative to their glorious packaging. Well, from what I’ve seen, Madonna’s son’s paintings are sub-high school art class incompetent crap, and charging $20,000+ a pop for them is kind of asking for abuse maybe? But, hey, rescue him. I’m sure it would him and his ‘art’ a world of good. ** Dominik, Hi!!! Yeah, after reading the description of ‘Deadly Dentists’, I decided to leave it safely in my imagination. Could be the premise of a cool cheap horror/slasher film though. Your love worked, I think, since an appropriate restaurant has been found, and tonight I’m gorging! Love replacing Harry Styles ‘internal organs with macaroni & cheese, G. ** Bill, I love fireworks too, but they’re like porn films. They could and should be more … something. Ooh, nice, about that firework from your childhood. That sounds like an exception to my above mentioned gripe. Yeah, excited avoid the Buttholes doc. That could be wild. Happy day, sir. ** l@rst, Hi. No, I never quit smoking. No doubt I should have and should still, but I have no plans to. All I’ve got left is cigs and coffee. Ouch. I had a root canal recently and it was no fun whatsoever, but then it was over, and now, apart from a new little valley in my mouth to entertain my tongue, it’s like it never happened. Enjoy the twilight sleep if you can. Me too: re: the Buttholes doc. Happiest day! ** _Black_Acrylic, I completely agree. I love your new PT episode. It was wild. I think I’m going to give it another birthday spin in fact. But without headphones! Glad you’re a fellow jab survivor supreme. Wow, about your uncledom. Nice, buddy. ** T, Hi, T. I think the last you were you were in Gare de Lyon? So you were here. Physically. IRL. Oh, shit, hugs about the overworkload. I hope your colleagues’ health is back to a noses-to-the-grindstone point. I’m very happy that you saw and liked ‘TIHYWD’ so much! Thank you! Yeah, I’m proud of that piece, and, boy, it was a lot of hard work getting it to work right originally, as you can probably tell. If you have any friends in London, it’s being performed there on March 18 & 19 at Sadler Wells. I wrote the lyrics to the song, but not the music. I’m not sure who wrote that. The voice singing the song belongs to Tojiko Noriko. She has a lot of albums out and she’s great. Anyway, yeah, I’m so thrilled you liked it. I’ll greedily take that wished-for week, of course. Thank you. To go obvious too, I hope your week is like your top 7 all-time favorite songs. ** Steve Erickson, Hi. There are plenty of Ethiopian restaurants here, it was just finding one that was fairly guaranteed to be good. And, more importantly, open on Mondays because almost none of them are. I think we have a winner, but I’ll I’ll find out tonight. Is the Ethiopian restaurant you mention the one on Ave B just north of the park? I’ve been there a few times and loved it. What we’re waiting to hear is if some funding will come through or not, and I don’t know exactly when we’ll hear. Hopefully any minute, or at least any day. ** geymm, Thank you, pal, and awwww. Fuck postal rules, and thank you kindly for the thought. Have a great day on my emotional dime. xo. ** Brian, Hey, Brian. Nice descript. of the firework packages. When I know the ‘Crowd’ @ BAM dates, I’ll let you know. Fujiko Nakaya is so great. One of Zac’s and my ongoing protects is a documentary about her. We shot a lot of footage some years ago, and we need to go back to it, probably after ‘Room Temperature.’ Oh, ‘TIHYWD’ is ‘This Is How You Will Disappear’. What Cadinot did you watch? The earlier films are by far the best, I think. My weekend? Hm. I had my Zoom bookclub with my US writer pals, and that was great. It was very rainy here, which kind of hampered stuff. Not too much happened, actually, I don’t think. Huh. Well, here’s to a week that sacrifices itself on the altar of your joy. ** Right. You know what’s what today. Enjoy my birthday in whatever form you do, and I’ll see you tomorrow.


  1. David

    Happy birthday Dennis!!! did this card for you…
    also posted it on today’s facebook post just in case.the link downt work…. (deliberate spelling mistake there as always)

    I’ll go through these fine tunes later on….


  2. Misanthrope

    Dennis, Happy Birthday!

    Should be 69 songs, right? 😉

    Wait, what, no Doors or Suede? Okay, you saved the day with my favorite Jesus and Mary Chain song. Hehe.

    It’s a strange world. I know a few people who tested positive after someone at their work tested positive and they never had a symptom and had no idea. At the same time, I know fully vaxxed who got it and had a really hard time with it. Kerazy.

    I was able to chill, though David was a mess again. He’s promising to change everything soon, but he’s been doing that for 6 years now. Eek.

    Onward and upward!

  3. David Ehrenstein


    Marvelously idiosyncratic list as one would expect.So glad to see Laura Nyro and Van Dyke Parks represented on it.

    My Favorite Song is of course by Larry Hart

    And high on the list of my favorite singers –Marianne

  4. cal

    Happy birthday Dennis! Hope it’s a fun one for ya! Love lovely cal

  5. Niko

    Hey Dennis, happy birthday to you, hope your day is a blast! Doesn’t seem that self-indulgent to share your favorite songs here, it’s generous, so I feel provoked to really push you into self-indulgence with my question. I read ‘I Wished’ a few times last year and its effect is incredible and wild. When we were chatting here last year, you said the last section of ‘God Jr.’ is your favorite thing you’ve ever written, and while I was reading ‘I Wished’ I wanted to ask you if the two Craters have replaced that favorite spot? It’s a feeling I got, because in all three of those separate sections it feels like you reach the threshold of something totally ineffable while remaining in total control of a unique aesthetic. At the end of the second Crater I just burst into tears, it’s so hard to explain what exactly is that heightened point it reaches, but emotionally it hits a few hidden notes that are unnameable. I have some questions about emotionality in that novel which I’m dying to ask but they’re too hard for me to type out.

  6. rav

    Happy birthday, you wonderful individual, you changed the worldview so much of this anonymous internaut, you wouldn’t believe.

  7. David Fishkind

    Happy birthday, Dennis! Here’s my favorite song I’ve heard in 2022 so far: Are you 69 today? That’s wassup.

  8. KingDooDoo69

    Happy Birthday Dennis! Today is my first day of sobriety, and I’m going to dedicate it to you as a sort of stupid gift from a stranger.

    I’ve been reading your novels since I was 11; I used to have my grandma buy them for me off of Amazon, back when Amazon was just a river of books. I’m 29 now, and you’re still my favorite author. Your work has meant more to me than anything else I’ve come into contact with all these years, like it’s really gotten me through a lot. like some sort of molten core to my earth. Anyways, I’m not really anyone, and this is really self serving so far, but I just wanted to say that I’m really glad that you’re still around, and that you still grace us with your work and these daily blog posts, and I hope that you are having a good 60th. Thanks really doesn’t cut it, but thank you so much, and happy birthday again!

    • Bernard

      very nice to hear this message here. Really, nobody is anyone, and anyone isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, I think. Not that I’d know. I’m not anyone, too.

  9. _Black_Acrylic

    Happy Birthday and thank you about the new PT episode! Very much enjoying hearing Ride – Vapour Trail again, giving me a flashback to my 90s Indie days. I used to make cassettes to listen to this stuff on in my bedroom, with the Ride side coloured in with blue felt tip pen and the My Bloody Valentine side in pink. Ah, good times.

  10. Sypha

    Well, I said it on Facebook but I’ll say it again, happy birthday Dennis! Hey, I’ve actually heard a lot of these songs… though I think if I were to choose my own favorite Velvet Underground it would be “Sister Ray”… Bjork would probably be “Army of Me”… Sonic Youth would be maybe be “Death Valley 69″… Fleetwood Mac would be… nah, it’s your birthday, I won’t go there, ha ha. Hope you have a good day!

  11. h now jean

    Happy Birthday Dennis!

    My comments here have been filtered somehow but hope this one will be published. Thanks for the music day! Have a lovely day today.

  12. Zak Ferguson

    What an eclectic shuffle of songs Dennis.

    Also, a very happy birthday. 🍻 here’s to you and many other birthdays.

    I’ll need to make a Dennis Cooper play list now, (like everyone else whom frequents this blog space) and give it a tributary listen every 10th of January.

    My birthday is next week on Wednesday, 19th, and to be honest, meh, birthdays to me, for myself personallu are shrug worthy…

    I love celebrating other people’s, and giving out gifts and love and well wishes.

    But…hmmm, for myself … I’m introverted about it. Maybe a little nihilistic and cynical about my existence. Who knows? Maybe I need to get over myself.
    I was that kid that cried when everyone sang happy birthday to him up until he was about ten. I hated it. (I lie, I still cry).

    Anyway, much love from Brighton xxxxxxx

  13. Dominik


    Happy, happy, happy birthday, Dennis!! How was the restaurant – or I mean, the food? Did you find it worthy of the occasion?

    Hahaha, poor Harry! Who knows what he’s hiding inside, though? Thank you! Love walking up to your table – strictly after you finish your celebratory dinner! – and serenading you with The Flaming Lips’ “The Spiderbite Song”, Od.

  14. Daniel

    Happy Birthday! Can’t wait to listen!

  15. Andrew

    Happy Birthday, Dennis!

    I turned this into a public Spotify playlist if anyone cares to listen this way:


    • Bernard


  16. Brendan

    Happy Birthday, Buddy! This list is most totally awesome. I’ll be crooning with you all day today. I think I can do all 60 before midnight tonight, right?


  17. Steve Erickson

    Happy birthday! Great list. I’ve never heard post-GOOD OL’ BOYS Randy Newman. Would you recommend any later Newman albums?

    No, the Ethiopian restaurant where I got food poisoning is on 6th St. I will look up the one on Ave. B and take a trip there some time.

  18. Ferdinand

    Happy bday Dennis , and woop what a generous birthday cake of a post you have made, perfect to melt to.after a seesaw few days , I think I will help myself to a generous helping here :))))))))) Hope 2022 I didnt know your also a capricorn. Im 27 Dec. Hope u got some gifts or gifted yourself something cool.

  19. T

    Oh, happy birthday Dennis! Many happy returns of the day 🙂 I really love Ethiopian food too, so that sounds like a dreamy plan, for personal reference what/whereabouts is the restaurant? if the I’m writing this with a mouthful of ginger nut biscuit, which I know some people dislike, but I love it, so I’m gonna wish you a first day in the next year of your life that’s just like a mouthful of your favourite biscuit or other appropriate comestible, xT

  20. wolf

    Happy Birthday Dennis!!!
    Christ on a bike, what a choice selection! Randy Newman! Nina Simone! Fugazi! Tim Buckley! Xiu Xiu! Scott&Sunn! Tricky! Björk! Cat Power before she got boring! Melvins!
    Wishing you much goodness and an ace 2022. Love hugs and poppadoms XXX

  21. James


    Happy birthday, my friend! I hope you had a great birthday today!


  22. Jeff J

    Happy birthday, Dennis! What a great banquet of songs. It was my background today as I worked my way through various freelance assignments. There were some great revelations. I know the Cale and Newman albums, but the songs you chose never stood out for some reason — but here their super genius really shone.

    Somehow I missed Drunken Boat entirely. Are any of their albums worthy of the amazing “Pool”? I also missed Airport 5 and loved that tune. What do you recommend from them?

    I stopped paying attention to Tricky before “Blowback” came out. That tune you picked was new to me – is the rest of the album anywhere near as good?

    Hope you’re feeling better about your birthday than starting the stack with “Old Man” and ending it with “Je Suis Malade” might suggest, haha. How was the day?

    I took off the week btwn Xmas and New years – it was blissful to relax and do a lot of reading. Saw “Licorice Pizza” which I thought was charming.

    Last week, I presented a screening of “Sisters with Transistors” at local museum, though the rampant covid numbers meant attendance wasn’t great. Looks like I’ll be able to present more experimental film on 16mm here once the virus calms down and excited about that.

  23. Bernard

    Big Happy Birthday energy to the Master and Commander of all the troops. Looks like some big birthday bash you have got going there. Many happy years coming I home. Yes it’s pretty lousy now but . . .well, it *could* get better.
    Tomorrow will be the first day in a long while that I’m not feeling stressed out over deadline pressure–unless I’ve missed something, which I usually do.
    I go through blog posts a few at a time, usually weeks behind you, catching up on the morsels.
    More news coming. Stay warm (ish) and healthy (very).
    PS I had anesthesia last week myself and it was sooooo relaxing . . .

  24. Maria, Isabella, Camila, Malaria, Gabriela

    Hey Cooper a Dennis! Happy the birthday is!! I dance a for you today somewhere special hey!! Just a little not as to draw a too much attention to myself a Maria, Isabella Camila Malaria Gabriela!! In a very lovely location! after I had a very nice food, Hey!!!! Should I kill a 69? for you? Or just a perform a the sex act? I will think Mr Cooper! Thankings

  25. politekid

    dropping in briefly to say

    1) many happy returns!! here are a couple of small presents, a part-continuation of the xmas hamper:
    > a raunchy episode of a Sims 2 machinima soap opera:
    it’s supposed to be part of some subculture or another, but i’m not which one. emo? gen x-ish? i can only find one other episode of the series ( which seems to take place eight years later.
    > Half Life 2 machinima of Mossman singing along to Nothing Compares 2U:
    someday i’ll run an acting workshop in which this is the only piece of instruction i give.
    > 16 & Pregnant, a Sims 4 soap opera which has been running since 2016
    admittedly, i haven’t watched much of this yet — not at all emo, more like Kardashian/American soap/E! — but the idea at least excited me and i hope it excites you too.

    2) what an excellent playlist, thank you for your generosity. it’s always great to see some love for Laura Nyro. New York Tendaberry is, if not my favourite album, one of my favourites.

    3) my wonderful dysfunctional bookshop at last got hold of I Wished, so i will finally be able to read it! i shall chalk that down to yet more of your generosity.

  26. l@rst

    Happiest of birthdays!!!!

    What a great list of songs! As The World Dies… by Sebadoh is a monster! I once drunkenly rode in a car with Eric Gaffney and I just gushed to him over that song. Embarrassing memory. That package of words I sent you just made it back to my house! Well you have the digital versions and now I know how that doesn’t work.
    Enjoy your day!


  27. Paul Curran

    Happiest Birthday, Dennis!! xx Hope you’ve had/are having a lovely day/evening/night. A gift of great tracks up there. Some I remember as being regulars on your birthday lists.

    Speaking of gift-related-isms, I saved I Wished to read over Xmas, and I loved it so much. A perfect and remarkable gift to your friends, fans, the world. I’m reading it again now. Totally incredible.

  28. schlix

    Hey Dennis! Happy Birthday! I hope you had a very nice day!
    Great group of songs. Thank you for that kind of birthday party!

    Two weeks ago I bought the German version of “The Sluts” – “Die Schlampen”
    a very beautiful book.

    See you and all the best


  29. Bill

    Happy birthday Dennis! That’s one of my favorite Gang of 4 songs too. I don’t usually think of you as a “Knowing Me Knowing You” kind of guy, but I guess I don’t know you that well, haha. Hope your day is packed with celebration and good news.

    Other than your weather, of course. Sorry to hear it’s taken a turn for the worse. We’re *finally* warmer and sunnier than Paris and New York.


  30. Billy

    Happy birthday Dennis
    I’m reading AWW Bremont’s Hey Boy from your recommendations and I’m very much enjoying it, so thanks for that xx

  31. Dalton

    Happy Birthday Dennis.
    Haven’t commented in a long time, but I still lurk.

    I’ve been on a huge Melvins kick as well as revisiting a lot of Xiu Xiu’s work, so it’s nice and prophetic to see them here. For some reason, I was expecting some Swans but that would’ve been too predictable I’d imagine haha. Also there’s something special about The Shangri-Las that I haven’t noticed about their contemporaries. They’re weird.

    Anyway, I hope you have a nice birthday.

  32. Gus CaliGirls

    Happy birthday Dennis !!! As a small birthday treat (maybe) this has been my favourite song over the past few month, from a band featuring members of Var

    Sorry to hear of the various, tedious, and ever-mutating pandemic pains, but glad you’re still getting on okay and hope you’ve done something great for the big 69. I’m always enjoying the blog updates and today blazed through Giraudon’s “Fur” on your recommendation. Her stories are so trippy, really like nothing I’ve ever read before. I’ve also recently read Elizabeth Bishop’s “The Man-Moth” and can maybe see some loose similarities, but Bishop is definitely much more romantic or something than Giraudon.

    Nothing too much going on in my life – chipping away at my uni work which at this point seems to be some kind of installation/stageplay about a seance with Darby Crash, but still figuring it all out. I feel both blessed and cursed having read “Castle Faggot” as it’s such a perfect text and great as a reference point, but how does one try and work after such an effortlessly monolithic work ! I’m also reading Dracula for the first time which is really fun, loving that it’s made up of letters and diaries.

    Also, part of my 2022 obsessive watching, I really wanna try find your 2 films to watch since I still haven’t seen either. A friend also told me I should really try get my hands on Michael Salerno’s “Godland” since it would be of relevance to my work.

    Sending all my best for your birthday week,

  33. Rafe

    Happy birthday Dennis, thank you for your unending artistic and intellectual offering– your passion makes me really excited to wake up in the morning and make make make. loved listing to the songs 🙂 I hope you have a great year and that the coffee flows.

  34. Brian

    A very happy birthday to you, Dennis!

    This is such a stacked playlist. Much of these are shamefully unfamiliar to me, so I’m going to wade through them tomorrow (thank you for assembling a playlist, Andrew!), but I spotted a handful of shared favorites, of which the Shangri-Las entry is perhaps my most cherished. Three perfect minutes of top-shelf melodrama; I love it so much. And the Weill/Brecht song, too. And the Nick Drake! (“Black-Eyed Dog” is my father’s favorite of his too.) And the ABBA—but there are so many. A very generous gift of you to offer us all today, thank you very much. A Fujiko Nakaya documentary sounds cool as hell. I hope you get to finish it some day. Ah, that’s right, I’ve heard that title before somewhere: “This Is How You Will Disappear”. Very beautiful. The Cadinot I watched was 1980’s “Scouts”. I decided to start with that because my favorite guy from “Equation to an Unknown” is in it, and this is evidently his only other screen appearance. I thought it was very funny and, of course, effective as porn, if not as cinematically interesting or experimental as something like “Equation” or any number of other art porn movies from that period. But I really have to watch his “Les Minets Sauvages”. I hear that one’s the best. What book did you discuss in your Zoom bookclub? The weather was frigid here today, so I didn’t get out much either. But I did a lot of writing on “In a Glass Cage” for a very small film essay gig I have, so I accomplished something, at least. And I got my brother to read “Story of the Eye”, and he surprisingly totally loved it and is talking about it a lot now, and might even do some drawings in response to it, yay. Hope you had an over the moon birthday in every possible way. Pierre Buisson serving you a massive, customized bûche de noël on a silver platter or something along those lines. May it be the magnificent start to a wonderful week. All my love.

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