It's a curious thing sometimes, how two people who love the very same thing can love it for very different reasons, or even define what it is in very different ways. This isn't the first time I've been poked to action after reading or viewing something musician/actor/radio auteur/record label owner Little Steven Van Zandt has said, which does surprise me. After all, he started "Underground Garage," bringing some slammin' garage rock back to the airwaves, for which I am eternally grateful. But after watching this video on Van Zandt's picks for top garage bands of the, I gotta weigh in here. Watch it first.

THE LIST: Steven Van Zandt's Top Five Garage Bands

What???? In NO way do I consider the Beatles, the Stones, the Who, the Yardbirds, and THE F-IN' BAND to be "garage bands," not even from the first day they played a note together. Even under Van Zandt's own definition, all of these bands fail to meet the test: "white kids trying to play black music, and failing gloriously." Let's just cut right to the chase: yes, the Beatles, the Stones, the Who, and the Yardbirds were all pasty-white skinny English kids that sounded funny singing Howlin' Wolf; HOWEVER, each band integrated far more into their music than just mimicked American R&B. Think of the Beatles propensity for Everly Brothers-style harmonies, Sun Records cool cat scratch, and (yes) classic Broadway show tunes, The Who's Beach Boys-influenced multi-part harmonies as well as Keith Moon's Gene-Krupa-on-meth drumming, and the Eastern flavor to the Yardbirds' melodies and Jeff Beck's sinewy sitar-y guitar work. The Stones come closest to Little Steven's criteria, with sometimes-laughable early blues covers and Jagger's Parkinsonian take on James Brown dance moves, but moved so quickly into broader sounds and songs that it's still a "no." Most importantly, all of these bands were just too competent to be considered "garage" in any way -- too much musical talent there, with some really gifted vocalists, instrumentalists, and of course, songwriters. And THE BAND?? THE BAND???? What this turgid, plodding, hick-tone borefest of a group is doing on anyone's "garage band" list is a complete mystery to me. I know people love 'em, but I just don't get it. AT ALL.

It seems to me that Van Zandt wasn't really defining "garage rock" here. Most influential big DIY bands of the 60s? Arguably so. But still..."garage rock" to me is, briefly, this: a desperately passionate, wholeheartedly eager, monstrously stupid, joyously fun, snot-nosed punk, three-chord, three-minute, anyone-in-the-world-can-do-it bash, unhampered by competency, practice, or giving a rat's ass what anyone thinks. With that in place, here are MY Top Five Garage Bands, a tough, tough pick to say the least.

The Cramps: The creepiest garage band ever, in the best possible way -- sparse, dark, silly, aggressive, reverent, crazy, wild. The Cramps took the weirdest from '50s rockabilly, stuffed it into a poisoned Halloween candy apple, and fed it to us. Delicious.

The Cramps, "Garbage Man"

The Sonics: It's probably reasonable to state that the Pacific Northwest bred the first batch of garage rockers, post-Elvis yet pre-Beatles, with a trademark "Animal House" slop that reeked of testosterone, spilled beer, and too many days cooped up in the rain. The Sonics had such a filthy dirty sound that it nearly popped the needle off the records.

The Sonics, "Psycho"

The Gories: Detroit's post-punk Gories embody the finest of the spirit of the garage: a black dude, a white dude, and a woman, none of whom knew how to play their instruments at the start, grinding through strange, thumping primal tunes. Fearlessly messy, and so much fun. I shot this one when they played in Seattle. When Mick Collins broke a string on his guitar, throwing it out of tune, it DIDN'T EVEN MATTER!

The Gories, "Charm Bag"

Gonn: The very definition of what '60s garage rock was all about, Gonn was a bunch of Iowa teenagers who farted around in different bands, recorded two singles with pressings of around 500 copies each, played Battles of the Bands, got the reputation of "the loudest band in town," and broke up within two years. Years later with exposure from the "Pebbles" series of garage rock reissues, their "Blackout of Gretely" became a cult hit, complete with tremendous screams, trashcan drums, and mistakes aplenty. Gonn was not afraid to be bad, which made them great. They are now in the Iowa Rock n' Roll Hall Of Fame.

Gonn, "Blackout of Gretely"

Green Fuz: And who out-does them all to win the Most Garage-y Garage Rock Band Of All Time? A Texas band that had one -- count it, one -- single, a theme song named after the band, which was named after a member's green guitar fuzz box, recorded at an empty cafe with a single mic, completely out-of-tune, and nearly as stupid as a box of rocks at the bottom of the sea. And the cherry on top of the sundae? The Cramps covered "Green Fuz" in 1981. Gentlemen, the medal is yours!

Green Fuz, "Green Fuz"

Now, see, Van Zandt? This is how we do it, son. THE BAND??? Git oudda heeeer!