The letter E has grown more significance than any other, thanks to the advent of technology. We have email, ebay, ebooks, and emags.
Soon, parents will start giving their newborns names that start with E. Instead of the current trend of using last names for first names, society will be populated with Ekennedy, Elincoln, and perhaps even Emckenzie.
I personally hope that most parents, if they insist on using E names, will stick to the more traditional ones. There are plenty of choices, as one can see by just examining titles of songs from the last half century.
“For Emily, Wherever I May Find Her” by Simon and Garfunkel: Paul Simon writes about a beautiful dream where he walked with her “on frosted fields of juniper and lamplight” and “kissed her honey hair.”
“Come on Eileen” by Dexy’s Midnight Runners: This alt-country classic from a one-hit wonder owes its success to a frequently-played video on the early days of MTV.
“Elvira” by Oak Ridge Boys: This tribute to a girl that sets “hearts on fire” was the country group’s biggest hit.
“Cold Ethyl” by Alice Cooper: With lines such as, “She’s cold in bed, well she ought to be, ’cause Ethyl’s dead,” this track about necrophilia fits right into the Welcome to My Nightmare album.
“Eleanor” by the Turtles: The 60s band here takes a break from doing Dylan covers to plead their desire for a girl who is their “pride and joy etc.”
“Eleanor Rigby” by the Beatles: Paul McCartney’s portrait of a deceased spinster is decorated with haunting orchestration on this track from Revolver.
“Emma” by Hot Chocolate: The group’s “You Sexy Thing” is more popular, but this track from Every1’s a Winner has the more enduring chorus. One can almost sense the lover’s adoration for the girl, as he stutters “Emma-Emma-Emmaline.”
“Eve” by the Carpenters: Though the brother-sister duo had many more popular tunes in the 70s, this tribute to the first female name should be included on any anthology.
“Ellen” by 10,000 Maniacs: Natalie Merchant and her band mates hit their stride lyrically and musically on this hit from The Earth Pressed Flat.
“Emmy Divine” by the Dimes: This insightful track from The Silent Generation is characteristic of Johnny Clay and his folk-pop band.
“Erin” by Sister Hazel: The band never matched the success of “All for You,” but they continue to make catchy pop songs like this one from Lift.
“Endora” by the Shame Idols: The power-pop group on this track from Rocket Cat quickly makes you forget Der-Wood’s officious mother-in-law on the classic Bewitched TV series.
“I Never Loved (Eva Braun)” by the Boomtown Rats: Bob Geldolf and his Rats didn’t like Mondays, but in spite of the title they seemed to have once liked this girl very much.
“Emmie” by Laura Nyro: Nyro’s gift at imagery is evident from the song’s opening line, “Emily and her love to be, carved in a heart on a berry tree.”
“Elizabeth on the Bathroom Floor” by Eels: This track about suicide reinforces the dark themes indie artist Mark Everett ponders throughout the rest of Electro-Shock Blues.