The green sliver to your right represents songs that express environmental concern and don’t suck. It is populated by “Big Yellow Taxi” from Joni Mitchell. Oh, and “Mercy Mercy Me” by Marvin Gaye. “Earth Song,” by Michael Jackson, if you’re into that kind of thing. A couple of Neil Young songs. They call it a sliver for a reason.
With the recent explosion of “green” over the past few years, though, we’ve noticed a new wave of tunes that try to do better — to hip green so, you know, the kids can dance to it. Unfortunately, few of these new efforts have found their way to the sliver.
Here’s a list of recent eco-minded tunes, ranked from most to least cringeworthy. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
10. Dave Stewart (the Other Guy in the Eurythmics) has been instrumental in starting a posse of green celebrities called “Greenpeace Works,” which he characterizes, God help us all, as a “think tank.” The brain trust’s inaugural production is “Go Green,” a forgettable piece of didacticism set to stale mid-’90s pop beats. Imagine “We Are the World,” only with B-list celebs. And a corkscrew jammed in your temple.
The song is Greenpeace’s “Earth Day anthem,” which is as good an indicator as any that the human race is done for. When grumpy red staters imagine elitist liberal greens and their Gulfstream-flying Hollywood buddies, this is the soundtrack to their fuming.