Top 10 Chris Isaak Songs

Chris Isaak Songs

Photo: Public Domain

Our Top 10 Chris Isaak songs list looks back at the songs of a performer that in many ways personified the King on so many levels. By the King we mean Elvis Presley in his 1960s prime. Chris Isaak has the looks, the moves, the voice, and the style all very reminiscent of Elvis Presley. However, add a little Dick Dale style guitar playing and some of the most haunting noir-style songs we have ever heard, and you have an artist that should have been ten times more popular than he ever was. Hands down, Chris Isaak is one of our favorite musical artists of all time. We saw him open for Lisa Marie Presley one time and it should have been the other way around. The man blew away the crowd of Elvis fans who were there to see his daughter. His stage presence was intense, fun, and at times threatening to all the men who had brought their wives and girlfriends to the show.

With the exception of his loyal fan base, most people know Chris Isaak from his popular song “Wicked Game.” However, once you take a look at Chris Isaak’s spectacular catalog of songs, you are blown away by the abundance of great material he has released. Our Top 10 Chris Isaak songs list attempts to present a small sampling of some of his best songs. We are assured that once you take a listen to these great Chris Isaak songs, you will be hitting up your local record store in search of his sensational record albums.

# 10 – Can’t Do a Thing To Stop Me

We open up our top 10 Chris Isaak Songs list with the song “Can’t Do A Thing To Stop Me.” This one is chilling in many ways. Laced with some stinging minor chord guitar licks, a floating marimba, and Chris Isaak’s flawless falsetto, this song is dark. This seems to be a song about adulatory and if it is, it can be quite painful to anyone who has been cheated on. There may be something else going on. Maybe it is revenge cheating, maybe not. Either way it’s haunting.

The song “Can’t Do a Thing To Stop Me,” was the lead single from his album San Francisco DaysThe album was released in 1993. The song became a top 10 hit on the U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary music charts.

# 9 – Please

Continuing with our top 10 Chris Isaak Songs list we turn to his acoustic song entitled “Please.”  This one sounds very different from “Can’t Do a Thing To Stop Me,” It almost sounds like a different artist until he gets to the chorus.  The song was released on his album called Speak Of The Devil. The album was released in 1998. “Please,” was the album’s opening track and second single released from the record. The song did not appear on any of the U.S. Billboard charts.

# 8 – Gone Ridin’

Chris Isaak’s blend of rockabilly and Dick Dale 60’s style surf guitar collided head-on in this great song Gone Ridin’. The song was released on his debut album Silvertone in 1985. Gone Ridin’ was the second single released from the album. The song appeared in an episode of  Beverly Hills, 90210

# 7 – You Owe Me Some Kind Of Love

“You Owe Me Some Kind of Love” was released on Chris Isaak’s second album entitled Chris Isaak. The album was released in 1986. The song and the album’s production is in stark contrast to the sound of the big 1980s when bands like Tears For Fears, Def Leppard, and U2 all had this huge arena rock sound filled with synthesizers and multiple guitars, tons of echo, etc….. Chris Isaak’s band sounds like they could be out of the 50s 60s or 70s with great production. These were timeless songs Chris Isaak was releasing and they still sound as fresh in 2021 than they did in 1986 or they would have in 1956.

# 6 – Blue Spanish Sky

At number six on our top 10 Chris Isaak songs list we flip over to the sensational song “Blue Spanish Guitar.” Once again, Chris Isaak delivers a haunting song carried away by a brilliant vocal performance, some spectacular Spanish guitar playing, and just a daunting performance by everyone involved in the production of this song.

# 5 – Dancin’

As we get ready to embrace the second half of our top 10 Chris Isaak’s songs list we turn to the first single Chris Isaak ever released. The song “Dancin'” appeared on Chris Isaak’s first album entitled Silvertone. The album was released in 1985. The record featured the great Charles Lempriere known as Prairie Prince on drums. Prairie Prince was the drummer in The Tubes and also Jefferson Starship. On the album was also the guitarist James Calvin Wilsey who really helped shape Chris Isaak’s sound. On bass was Chris Solberg. The legendary Pee Wee Elis of James Brown’s band played saxophone on the record.

# 4 – Blue Hotel

Chris Isaak channels Elvis Presley vocally in the song’s opening segment. The guitar then rips in with that great beach surf sound and it’s all over. Chis Isaak’s music is just so compelling. “Blue Hotel,” was released on Chris Isaak’s second album entitled Chris Isaak. The album was released in 1987. “Blue Hotel,” was issued as the album’s second single. While the song did not chart in the United States,  it was a top 30 hit in France and a top 50 hit in the Netherlands. It just reached the top 100 in the United Kingdom.

# 3 – Somebody’s Crying

This heartbroken Chris Isaak song hits hard. This one was definitely written from the heart as the story goes that Chris Isaak wrote this song after a tough breakup with his girlfriend. The song “Somebody’s Crying,” was released in 1995. The song appeared on the Chris Isaak album entitled Forever Blue. It was the album’s lead single. The song was a top 10 hit in Canada and Australia but stalled in the mid thirties on most of the U.S. Billboard charts.

# 2 – Baby Did a Bad, Bad Thing

How could you not love this one? Chris Isaak hits the mark on the stellar song “Baby Did A Bad Bad Thing.” This one should have been a much bigger hit than it was. The song was released on the 1995 album Forever Blue. It was the album’s opening track. The song gained popularity when it was featured in the Stanley Kubrick film Eyes Wide Shut starring Nicole Kidman and her husband at the time Tom Cruise. One of the best songs of the 1990s.

# 1 – Wicked Game

We close out our top 10 Chris Isaak songs list with what is arguably Chris Isaak’s most popular song. The recording of “Wicked Game,” was not a big hit when it was first released in 1989 on the album Heart Shaped World. However, when the song was placed in the motion picture Wild At Heart directed by David Lynch, the song became a monster hit, “Wicked Game,” pretty much broke the top 10 on music charts all over the world. The song peaked at number six on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1990 making it the biggest hit of Chris Isaak’s career.  The interaction between James Calvin Wilsey’s guitar playing and Chris Isaak’s legendary falsetto made for a stunning recording that hypnotizes the listener at every play.

Updated November 1, 2023

Top 10 Chris Isaak Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023

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