Steve Black

Steve Black

The WRIF air staff continues looking through the music catalog and picking their favorite tunes from artists A-Z. Jump in and let us know your favorite songs from all these bands and hopefully we’re sharing some new tunes with you as well! This time around we’re starting with the letters F, G H and I.

  • Faith No More:

    Jade Springart: “Epic”.

    Meltdown: “Midlife Crisis” and “Falling to Pieces”.

    Steve Black: “We Care a Lot” I always kind of liked it but was reminded how much due to its inclusion in the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 movie.

    Anne Erickson: “Epic”.

    Jonel Jaksa: “Be Aggressive”. From Angel Dust, FNM’s second album with singer Mike Patton. Haunted house-style keyboards, teen cheerleaders on the chorus, a guitar solo that seems out of place, and highly suggestive song lyrics. Super catchy and super weird, kind of like Faith No More themselves.


    Nathan Franklin: “War Pig” cover.

    James Campbell: “Epic”.

  • Five Finger Death Punch:

    Jade Springart: “A Little Bit Off”. This is one of their newer songs, but I’m a big fan of it. It’s one of their less aggressive songs and has a great rhythm. The lyrics are great as well.

    Meltdown: “Wash it all Away”, “American Capitalist”, “Sham pain” plus I dig their covers.”.

    Steve Black: “Dot Your Eyes”. What a great anger song. “I’ll dot your eyes and cross you F#&ing Ts” indeed.

    Anne Erickson: “Wrong Side of Heaven”. I like this song, because if I remember correctly, it was written in honor of the troops. And it’s just a beautiful rock ballad.

    Jonel Jaksa: “Wash It All Away”. You know the drill. A driving guitar riff and angst-filled lyrics about how crappy things are, but how we’re not letting that bring us down. Formulaic, but who cares? I love it.

    Nathan Franklin: “Far From Home”.  Believe it or not I actually enjoy some of Five Finger Death Punch’s lighter stuff. Overall, I don’t go for as much heavy metal as others. I really enjoy the flow and the purposeful lyrics of “Far From Home”.

    James Campbell: “Wash It All Away”.

  • Foo Fighters:

    Jade Springart: Quite hard to pick one Foo Fighters song. Dave Grohl is a rock God and all the musicians that have been involved with the Foo are highly talented. “No Way Back” “These Days” and “The Pretender” are definitely at the top of my list.

    Meltdown: “The Pretender“, “Times Like These” and “Rope”.

    Steve Black: I Do love me some Foo Fighters, so this is difficult. I’ll choose “Times Like These” just due to the depth of its meaning. But I must at least mention “Run”, “Let It Die” and “DOA” are all outstanding.

    Anne Erickson: “Everlong”. Something about Dave Grohl’s raw and emotive vocals on this song gets me every time.

    Jonel Jaksa: “I’ll Stick Around”. I’m such a big Foos fan. Their debut album remains one of my all-time favorites. Like the best Foo Fighters songs, “I’ll Stick Around” is both melodic and aggressive. Reportedly one of the first songs Dave Grohl wrote after Kurt Cobain’s passing. And, apparently, it was written about Courtney Love.

    Nathan Franklin: “My Hero”.

    James Campbell: “Monkey Wrench”. I remember buying the album this song was on (The Colour and the Shape) and being so disappointed cause I wanted every song to sound like this one.  Then forgot all about it until Guitar Hero put this track in the game and rediscovered the whole album. Didn’t even realize I owned the CD with “Everlong” and ‘My Hero” on it!

  • Ghost:

    Jade Springart: Anyone who has tuned into my radio show knows that I absolutely love Ghost. They are definitely one of my favorite bands of all time. Their live show is incredible, and I highly recommend checking it out! As for favorite songs, “Year Zero” “Ritual” “He Is” and “Absolution”.

    Meltdown: Long list….”He Is”, “Square Hammer”, “Rats”, “Cirice”, “From the Pinnacle to the Pit”, “Hunter’s Moon”, many, many more…

    Steve Black: I’m not a big Ghost fan, but I always use a supped-up version of “Rats” for my annual Halloween Special. I’m also digging their new cover of Iron Maiden’s “Phantom of the Opera”.

    Anne Erickson: “Square Hammer”.

    Jonel Jaksa: “Square Hammer”. Great hook. Great harmonies. Ghost knows a thing or two about pop sensibility in heavy metal.

    Nathan Franklin: “Square Hammer”.

    James Campbell: “Square Hammer”.

  • Godsmack:

    Jade Springart:  I’ve always really liked Godsmack and the supposed story behind “Cryin’ Like A Bitch” is hilarious. I also like “Whiskey Hangover” and the opening riff to “Voodoo” always hits.

    Meltdown: “1000hp”, “Bulletproof”, “Legends Rise”….their live drum battle is awesome!

    Steve Black: “Shinedown” is still my A-Number 1 go to song from Godsmack. I love the heavy blues, the harmonica and the overall vibe.

    Anne Erickson: “Under Your Scars” – I’m so used to Godsmack pushing out hard rock numbers, so this one surprised me. It’s a heartfelt song that I can listen to over and over.

    Jonel Jaksa: “1000hp”. Taking a page out of the tried and true “Turn The Page”/“Wanted Dead Or Alive” book of songs about being on the road, “1000hp” was a Godsmack song I initially didn’t pay much attention to. But it happens to be one of my best friend’s favorite Godsmack songs. When I first began working at WRIF, he’d text me every now and again asking me to play it. I was only able to oblige him a handful of times, but I’d end up listening to it in the studio a lot when he’d send out the request. It’s kind of become a personal guilty pleasure and always makes me think of my buddy, Dragan.

    Nathan Franklin: “I Stand Alone”.  This is my top Godsmack song mostly because I really resonated with first few lines growing up. “You can’t control me, if you try to take me down you’re gonna break”. As an independent and slightly defiant kid I connected with this song exceptionally well. Yes, I was a kid in 2002.

    James Campbell: “Whatever”. I remember seeing commercials for this album on MTV. Thought it was weird and that this band that is buying commercials is NEVER gonna go anywhere if they have to BUY commercials…look who has their foot in their mouth now….

  • Green Day:

    Jade Springart:  Clearly an iconic band. “Basket Case” is probably the first song I remember hearing from Green Day, but the entire American Idiot album is my favorite. “Jesus of Suburbia” (the entire 9 minutes) is my favorite on the record.

    Meltdown: “Blvd of Broken Dreams” and “Jesus of Suburbia”.

    Steve Black: “Boulvard of Broken Dreams” is probably my fav.

    Anne Erickson: “Time of Your Life”. Not to be trite to pick this one, but this is an epic jam. It’s also the first Green Day song I ever heard.

    Jonel Jaksa: “Who Wrote Holden Caulfield?”. When Dookie came out, I became such a big Green Day fan that I ran out and bought up their back catalog. “Who Wrote Holden Caulfield?” was on their second album, Kerplunk!, and is everything I love about pop-punk. Great riffs and great choruses. Three chords and the truth, as they say. Plus, not too many songs out there influenced by J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher In The Rye.

    Nathan Franklin: “American Idiot”. As a 90’s baby, Green Day is one of my favorite groups. While I greatly admire “When September Ends”, “American Idiot” takes the cake because of me viewing the musical American Idiot back in my early teens. After that the song stood out amongst them all.

    James Campbell: “Basket Case”.

  • Greta Van Fleet:

    Jade Springart:  Love these guys and it’s been so cool to watch their success and support them. “When The Curtain Falls” has to be one of my favorites.

    Meltdown: “When The Curtain Falls”, “Black Smoke Rising”. Pretty much anything off the Anthem of a Peaceful Army album.

    Steve Black: I love the guitar solo on the extended version of “Lover Leaver (Taker Believer)” Jake plays with a lot of heart! Honorable mention to “Black Smoke Rising”.

    Anne Erickson: “Highway Tune”.

    Jonel Jaksa: “Highway Tune”. Their first single is still my favorite. They got hassled from the get-go for sounding like a certain iconic rock band from the 1970s. But comparisons be damned. This still sounded fresh to me. Good stuff from the best thing to come out of Frankenmuth since chicken and beer.

    Nathan Franklin: “When the Curtain Falls”.

    James Campbell: “Highway Tune”.

  • Guns 'N Roses:

    Jade Springart: “Patience” or “Nightrain”.

    Meltdown: “Estranged”, “November Rain”, “There Was A time”, many, many more. I’m a huge fan of the terribly underrated Chinese Democracy album.

    Steve Black: “Rocket Queen”

    Anne Erickson: “Sweet Child O’ Mine”.

    Jonel Jaksa: “Dust N’ Bones”. GN’FN’R fan from jump. So, I wanted to stay away from the obvious fan favs. I really think they took a hit when Izzy Stradlin left the band. Terrific songwriter. They had two tracks on the Use Your Illusion albums that Izzy sang, accompanied by Axl Rose. “Dust N’ Bones” was one of them and it’s just such a jam. Bluesy, dangerous-sounding. Like a late-night walk through a dark alley. A super underrated track.

    Nathan Franklin: “Sweet Child O’ Mine”. I am a huge Guns N’ Roses fan. There are not many tracks that I don’t like. But I have to roll with “Sweet Child”. The vocals, the sweet sound of the guitar throughout and the longevity that this track has endured and are why it makes my list. Guns N’ Roses has such a unique sound combined with sheer ability that it’s one of my all-time favorites.

    James Campbell: “Welcome to the Jungle”. This was used in a GTA commercial and it made me think GNR was cool when for a long time I did not think they were cool.

  • Halestorm:

    Jade Springart: “The Steeple”. Also a newer Halestorm song but I love the hook. Lzzy Hale is a total rock star.

    Meltdown: “I Am The Fire”, “Here’s to Us” and “Love Bites”.

    Steve Black: “The Silence” is one of the greatest songs of all time when it comes to capturing longing, the freedom of youth and the eternity of love. Runner up for me is “Killing Myself to Live”.

    Anne Erickson: “I Miss the Misery”.

    Jonel Jaksa: Love Bites (So Do I)”. I remember reading somewhere that this song was musically inspired by Skid Row’s “Slave To The Grind” and Guns N’ Roses’ “Out Ta Get Me”. Both songs Halestorm eventually covered. This song really is a nice companion to those tunes. Full of fire and brimstone. A powerful Lzzy Hale vocal performance. Joe Hottinger’s guitar is relentless. And Arejay Hale goes 100mph through the whole darn thing.

    Nathan Franklin: “I Miss the Misery”. Somehow, I only got into Halestorm recently. I am addicted to Lizzy Hale’s voice. I think she has a dominating vocal ability and truthfully, I love most of her group’s songs. “I Miss the Misery” just so happens to be the one I’ve heard the most. Honorable mention for Lizzy and Daughtry’s cover of “Separate Ways”.

    James Campbell: “I Get Off”.

  • Iron Maiden:

    Jade Springart: “2 Minutes to Midnight”.

    Meltdown: “Flight of Icarus”, “The Trooper”, “Number of the Beast”, “Aces High”….I could go on and on.

    Steve Black: A top 10 band for me so this is soooooooo hard. Give me “Hallowed Be Thy Name” with a side of “Where Eagles Dare”. Oh, and I give Maiden the nod for best cover song of all-time as well with “Cross Eyed Mary”.

    Anne Erickson: “2 Minutes to Midnight”. This was a tough one! I love all of Iron Maiden’s jams! This one is just classic.

    Jonel Jaksa: “Aces High”. Ah, Maiden. So many to choose from. “Aces High” is about an air battle over Great Britain from the view of an ace pilot. A classic with soaring vocals from Bruce Dickinson and rocking bass from Steve Harris.

    Nathan Franklin: “Flight of Icarus”.

    James Campbell: “Run to the Hills”.

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