A guitarist's first love is music.
Which presents a real problem when it comes to setting the mood for a little romance.
Who can possibly concentrate on making out when the real hot licks are emanating from the speakers?
Relax, Johnny Hammer-on. The songs below constitute the perfect score for your next date. Score!
10. "Wonderful Tonight," Eric Clapton
Take a lesson from ol' Slowhand.
First, the slow-hand thing works quite well on real necks, too. And second, if you get too wasted at a party, just toss the car keys to your date and be very quick with the compliments—there's still a chance to salvage this thing with the sensitive-artist angle.
09. "Bed of Roses," Bon Jovi
With this song, yet another rock 'n' roll clown (not Jon Bon Jovi—we mean the character in the song) attempts to make amends to his main squeeze for his loutish behavior, thereby setting impossibly high standards for the rest of us. A bed of roses? Right. Not in the budget. Will the lawn do?
08. "Feel Like Makin' Love," Bad Company
Subtlety? Never a strong suit for Paul Rodgers. (Nice that he adds the lyric "to you," though—how romantic.) Take advantage of Rodgers' forthrightness and use this track as a laugh-inducing icebreaker. Then strike while the iron is still hot.
07. "(Don't Fear) the Reaper," Blue Öyster Cult
If laughter doesn't work, try instilling a little fear. With "Reaper," so-called thinking-man's heavy-metal band reminded lovers everywhere that they might not live to see tomorrow. During Buck Dharma's wicked solo, lean in close and whisper, "Carpe Diem." That's Latin for "more cowbell."
06. "Patience," Guns N' Roses
Like a good solo, a memorable date should build towards its climax—the goodnight kiss. This epic ballad lets her know she'll have to wait for those fireworks. And more important, it'll allow you to warm up by whistling along to the best lip solo since The Andy Griffith Show theme song.
05. Side One of Led Zeppelin IV
Who could forget Mike Damone's key piece of advice in Fast Times at Ridgemont High? Apparently Mike Ratner, because in the very next scene he's playing "Kashmir," from Physical Graffiti. And look where that gets him with Stacy.
04. "Heaven," Warrant
No one has ever called Jani Lane a genius. At least no one outside of Akron, Ohio. Still, you have to credit the guy with understanding the female psyche. The key line here is "No matter what your friends might say." Break through that defensive line of rumormongers she calls "friends," and, indeed, heaven isn't too far away.
03. "I Want to Know What Love Is," Foreigner
Begging? Generally not a good move. Best to let Lou Gramm do the pleading for you.
02. "Keep on Lovin' You," REO Speedwagon
"I don't want to sleep; I just want to keep on lovin' you!" Careful here: don't let Kevin Cronin put any promises in your mouth that you can't keep.
01. "Open Arms," Journey
And, of course, no one captures the quietude of post-make-out bliss quite like Steve Perry. "Lyin' beside you, here in the dark; feeling your heart beat with mine..." Zzzzzzzzz ...