FT5: First CD

0522top5cover8-Tracks. Cassette Tapes. And now, another one bites the dust. Today’s Top 5 is dedicated to the memory of the compact disc. Honestly, when was the last time you bought an actual CD? Even if you have made a recent CD purchase, chances are you took it straight to your computer to put it on your iPod. So in honor of the CD’s demise, we’re taking another trip down memory lane. Most of us here at The ATH were in our early teens when CD players became the craze. So the day we brought home that first CD was an epic experience. So without further ado, here’s a list of first CD’s from 5 ATH staff members. Be sure and stroll down memory lane with us when you’re done.

hammer_pleasehammerMC Hammer – Please Hammer, Don’t Hurt ‘Em

From raygun

It looks lie MC Hammer is becoming a regular celebrity in our nostalgic lists. Although I like to tell people that my first CD purchase was Pearl Jam’s Ten, that was actually the second CD I ever owned. Like millions of other pre-teens, I fell for the MC Hammer craze. Released in 1990, I had purchased Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em in anticipation of getting a brand new CD boombox for my 11th birthday. I can only imagine what I put my parents through practicing my “Hammertime” dance moves for hours on end in my bedroom. And who can forget the Saturday Morning cartoon, Hammerman?

billyjoel_stormfrontBilly Joel – Storm Front

From MrTrent

I bought this for “We Didn’t Start the Fire” and can specifically remember doing napoleon dynamite sledgehammer-style bmx jumps in the driveway while listening to this on my boom-box… which I purchased from Service Merchandise. It didn’t teach me jack $h*t about history, but it did teach about kicking ass, and having Richard Marx sing backing vocals on an album with a song about fire definitely kicks ass.

coolio_gangstasparadiseCoolio – Gangster’s Paradise Single

From RayRay

Technically my first CD purchases in the winter of 1995 consisted of 3 gems, Four by Blues Traveler, Deluxe by Better Than Ezra, and a CD single of “Gangster’s Paradise” by the incomparable Coolio. I had always longed for the soundtrack to Dangerous Minds, but damnit if my mom wasn’t up for buying me a parental advisory CD. Looking back, I didn’t really know any songs on the soundtrack and probably would have skipped to “Gangster’s Paradise” anyway. No matter what we were doing, my friends and I dropped whatever we were doing to sing a long to every word at the local church gymnasium dance. Death aint nuthin’ but a heart beat away.

newworldorder_republicNew Order – Republic

From nathan.lankford

I’m not going to sit around and pretend that I was into these guys way before you because I was really in the know; I had an older sister who would just leave tapes lying around, as well as put eyeliner on me before I took off for school. I loved her for it, even though it probably alienated me early on in life. Still, the best gift she gave was insight into music I wouldn’t have heard otherwise. I remember buying New Order’s Republic with its giant cardboard box, taking it home, and listening to it on repeat, over and over. It led me to go back and find out about other New Order albums, which led me to Joy Division, which led to The Cure. I admit it, I wasn’t cool; I was the weirdest kid in middle school.

gunsnroses_appetiteGuns N Roses – Appetite for Destruction

From corey.ayers

I remember looking at the abused half naked lady on the back of the cover and thinking “you are a man now.” There I was listening to songs about heroin addiction looking at cartoon boobs and robot rape, thinking that Guns N Roses were the pinnacle of everything awesome in my little corner of the universe. I’m glad that Appetite for Destruction was my first album it very easily could have been George Michael or the Lost Boys Soundtrack fueling my late night Sega Master System gaming sessions. I don’t remember much about the whole experience due to the fact my ten year old brain was melted by Slash’s licks but I do recall we picked the CD up at Circuit City the same day we picked up our first Compact Disc player. So there it is, I guess I got lucky it wasn’t Rick Astley or some shit.


  • I am loving these nostalgic Top 5’s!

    Alanis Morissette – Jagged Little Pill (cliche, I know!)

  • Indeed, the memories. Thanks for sharing.

    I had the hat trick for my first CD(s) purchase…R.E.M. ‘Out of Time’, The Black Crowes ‘Shake Your Money Maker’ and Tesla ‘Five Man Acoustical Jam’.

  • U2 – Joshua Tree

  • “Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em” was one of mine alongside MJ’s “Dangerous.”

    They came in the short-lived long, narrow cardboard cases…

  • Nice one, Greg- “Out Of Time” was one of my 1st 3 CD’s.

    The clincher, however, is if you still remember the dance moves to “Stand”.

  • Annie, I love these throwback FT5s too. I actually get to contribute.
    Michael Rice… Good Job.

    My 2nd CD was Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em. I chose it over Vanilla Ice.

  • My dad bought me Soundgarden- Superunknown and RATM – Evil Empire on the same day. Thanks Dad. I doubt he realizes how much those 2 albums changed my life.

  • My first CD was Yessongs by Yes. Make up that what you will.

    Corey’s paragraph reads like the diary of a serial killer. Just sayin’.

  • @Lazlo H.

    It does kind of read like Buffalo Bill’s diary.

  • In no particular order:

    Batman Returns Soundtrack
    Live – Throwing Copper
    Collective Soul – Self Titled

  • Green Day-Dookie


  • Savage Garden- Savage Garden

    … i know…. lol

  • Sweet first pick’s every one!

    – Black Flag, My War

    – Decendents, Somery

    – Black Uhuru, Red

    -Bob Dylan, Blood On The Tracks

    I remember the day clearly because I couldn’t believe I had just spent $100 on four shiny disc. I have no survivors from my early collections.

  • Well, my music experiences go back to 8-tracks (Bobby Bare, The Cars, something country but not western.) and albums (The soundtrack to Pinocchio, Hooked on Classics, Jethro Tull!), but I think some of my first CDs were The Smiths (The Queen is Dead) and The Georgia Satellites. Oh yeah, and Love and Rockets and Terence Trent D’Arby.

  • My first CD was 2Pac, Me Against the World. And don’t hate, that is still a good album!

  • first albums i really loved (sorry, i stated buying albums in the 90’s):

    – Garbage’s self-titled
    – Tool – Aenima
    – Sublime’s subtitled

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