100 songs Long Islanders should know

As we prepare for the upcoming Long Island Music Hall of Fame Induction Gala on Oct. 18 at the Paramount in Huntington, we wanted to pull together a list of the songs that should be a source of civic pride.
These are the 100 songs every Long Islander should know -- songs by people from here, about here, and written and recorded here, that also have changed the world of music. And by here, we go along with the LIHoF's definition of Long Island: Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau and Suffolk.


87. "Better Than Ever," Randy and The Rainbows

The doo-wop group from Maspeth, Queens, was on the brink of a major career in 1963 when they released the peppy "Denise," which bounced all the way to No. 10. However, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy derailed their equally upbeat follow-up and then the British Invasion made it tough for doo-wop to find a place on radio. "Denise" -- named after Denise LeFrak, a girl songwriter Neil Levenson met at a Long Island swimming pool, lives on in two versions -- the original, and the punkier version Blondie released in 1978, "Denis."

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