Whenever someone asks me what band from the late sixties I adore besides the Beatles (which is everyone’s obvious first choice), I always reply with The Animals. Their music was part of the British invasion, meaning that they were right beside legends like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and The Who when new, more modern forms of pop music started to take over the United States. They were the meaty undertone to the bunch, and supplied the gritty rhythm and blues style music that this blend so desperately needed. The five-piece band operated as one single unit which gave the band as a whole a feeling of fluidity and effortlessness, which is why people lined up around the block to see them perform live. Yes, people came for the music, but stayed for the deep, majestic voice of Eric Burdon, who served as front man. His croon is now known throughout the world as the one who sang the legendary song “House of the Rising Sun,” a song about pain, mistakes, and regret. However, one of my absolute favorite songs by The Animals is their song “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood.” The song is a cover of songwriter Bennie Benjamin’s song of the same name, which he wrote for the singer Nina Simone. Of course, The Animals made it their own with the ingenious intro guitar riff, dynamic instrumentals, and Eric Burdon’s unforgettable, impassioned voice. It’s a song that begs to be played on the highest possible volume while driving to no particular destination, and letting all your troubles pass you by. It’s fierce, fiery, and tenacious. It’s a song I’ll always consider to be one of the best of all time, considering it was one of my dad’s favorite songs and he played it all the time (and still continues to love it) and it has tons of amazing memories for me. “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood” is one of The Animals’ first singles, being released in 1965, and it also appears on their greatest hits album. It’s always important to know the roots and pioneers of modern pop, rock, and blues music, and the Animals were definitely a part of it, which is why they deserve to be recognized.