Desert Island Discs with Gaston Light

Written by Desert Island Discs, Music

If you could only listen to five albums, which ones would you choose? In this edition of Desert Island Discs, Jason Corcoran of Gaston Light makes his picks.

Gaston Light

Gaston Light

If you had to go away for awhile and you could only take five of your favorite albums with you, which ones would you choose? Yes, we know it isn’t a fair question, but that hasn’t stopped us from asking music fans who happen to be recording artists in their own right. This edition of Desert Island Discs comes courtesy of Jason Corcoran, a.k.a. Gaston Light, whose debut album, Peel, is out now. Visit his official site for samples of his music — after reading his Desert Island picks, of course!

This is way too hard. It varies…but I will dive a littler deeper than usual to capture those rare barnacles that will leave their ship and instead join me to drool in the sand. (The puns…I know.) As a challenge of sorts, though, all of the songs I pick will have the simple requirement of being written after 1985.

The Replacements – “Swinging Party” from the album Tim

This song makes me feel weak and hallucinating in the last city in the last basement on the last avenue. The party continues but it was closing time a year ago. Paul somehow cheerfully portrays that rotten realization on this number….The good times had taken their toll. He knew it, tried to laugh about it, but the joke was getting less and less funny for him.

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Neil Young – “Bandit” from the Album Greendale

A later cut from Neil, but this song has meant so much to me recently (a hard choice, sort of). It’s a universal sentiment of hope from Neil to himself (my own assumption) or to a man who has led a life of crime, fear, heartache, whatever the case may be. Either way , this song so elegantly captures that odd moment of hope one can experience when there is blood on their hands or at least in the sink. The sun is sinking but you follow the moon with a smile. Breathe….

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Tom Waits – “Day After Tomorrow” from Real Gone

It’s a song that makes me go WHY? My thoughts tumble but I’m way to scared to open my mouth, because my answer is always the same. “I don’t know.” Truly one of the best lyrical compositions ever written. Tom has taught me so often, specifically in this song, that it is not defeat to throw your hands up when they were already tied at birth pertaining to those overwhelming questions, that we as humans must ask ourselves. And fucking fear asking them.

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Wilco -“Misunderstood” from the album Being There

I felt totally angry and at peace with myself when I heard this song at around age 13. I picked up a guitar and wanted to scream for something or at someone. It had to be done after this, and I’m not kidding when I partly thank Jeff and Wilco for creating that appetite. However, writing this in Lincoln, NE tonight on a foreign couch (22 years old and completely lost), he might have been whispering to me as a young man to stay far away from whatever I was feeling. I don’t think so…Jeff once asked, “Is any song worth singing if it doesn’t help?” …Okay, now I’m more confused. Anyway, nothing more needs to be said about this song.

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Bruce Springsteen – “Long Walk Home” from the album Magic

In essence this song is my conclusion of what Rock ‘n Roll means to me. It’s the HOPE that is forever buried in this 3 1/2 minute song reflecting “the times” ….The power and community in a rallying chorus surround by a Telecaster riff that cries yet recognizes that every tear on every face tastes the same. A drunk, a criminal, a heart surgeon, or a musician like myself (you can be the judge of that) will all have are moments of absolute fear. Bruce has been there for me since I was kid to tell me that I am not alone when I’m afraid. Grab a drink, call your pastor, or simply sing along, for god’s sake…it’s good for you.

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I’m sorry how in depth I took it, but I love music so much — and these songs. Please listen to them, but please try to avoid to getting stuck on a fucking island…that is my real commentary regarding all five of these songs.


Sample five tracks from Gaston Light’s Peel:
Gaston Light Peel