Eighties Number Ones

Before plodding into another random topic, I’d like to apologise for what’s turned out to be another neglectful week. Thank you for bearing with me.

So, the Eighties. As much as it may well have been a fine decade for Christmas singles (thank you, Cliff), could anyone list ten chart-toppers that they still like?

Here’s one for you. Be sure to take note of the incredible pointed sideburns of Band/Live Aid’s all-too-often-forgotten hero, Midge Ure.

My first thought was that the best the decade had to offer would have to include a couple of re-releases: Jackie Wilson’s ‘Reet Petite’, in 1986, or Ben E. King’s ‘Stand By Me’, a year later. My second thought was rudely invaded by Glenn Medeiros, so I’ll probably never be able to recall it without breaking down. Sorry about that.

However, the following classics all topped the charts somewhere, proving that the Eighties weren’t quite so bad after all. What do you think?

– Blondie, ‘Atomic’
– Sam Brown, ‘Stop’
– Peter Gabriel, ‘Sledgehammer’
– George Harrison, ‘Got My Mind Set On You’
– Michael Jackson, ‘Smooth Criminal’
– John Lennon, ‘Imagine’
– Los Lobos, ‘La Bamba’
– Roy Orbison, ‘You Got It’
– Roxy Music, ‘Jealous Guy’
– U2, ‘With or Without You’

To help you list your favourites, have a look at this site, which conveniently lists the decade’s biggest hits from Australia, Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway and Switzerland, as well as the more commonly cited UK and US (Billboard Hot 100) charts. With its help, you too can easily waste an entire afternoon finding out who to thank for the continued airplay of ‘Funkytown’ by Lipps Inc. (it didn’t make the top spot in France, Italy or the UK for some strange reason), or trying to decide which Michael Jackson song you liked best. (The gloved one notched up an incredible eight Number Ones in both Belgium and the States throughout the ’80s, and all those hours spent playing ‘Moonwalker’ on the Master System II made my song choice for me; if you played it, please don’t be ashamed to say so, and refresh your memory here.)

It goes without saying that a Worst list would be too easy, but feel free to make us cringe if something’s on your mind – with or without the help of YouTube et al. One that really grates on my nerves is this one. Such a horrible little song…

Author: FEd

Features Editor of David Gilmour’s official blog, The Blog (‘Features’ previously being its rather naff title), affectionately – or lazily – shortened to ‘FEd’.

92 thoughts on “Eighties Number Ones”

  1. 😀 So funny. We did the same Eighties listing last Friday and noticed that 80 was musically rich compared to 2000.

    And we agree about mind and ear irritating TIGHT FIT!!!

    The Eighties music should make a comeback.

  2. The ’80s were a horrible decade for music, just hideous…

    We went from in the ’70s (and in their prime)

    Pink Floyd
    Led Zeppelin
    Black Sabbath
    Alice Cooper
    The Doors
    Queen
    Yes
    The Beatles
    The Stones
    Renaissance
    David Bowie
    Allman Brothers

    To (in the ’80s)

    Culture Club
    A-Ha
    The Human League
    Starship (good God)
    Mr. Mister
    Men Without Hats
    Debbie Gibson
    Dead or Alive
    Dexy’s Midnight Runners
    Falco
    Irene Cara
    Kim Carnes

    …and a million more acts that were just crap.

  3. Wasn’t Funkytown released in ’80? The very tail end of the disco era over here. The only good thing about the Disco era over here was that my interest in it was very brief.

    Bought 2 DVD set for RTN and the newest version of making The Dark Side of the Moon the other day and had a great time watching and listening. David and Richard were absolutely flawless together.

    I wish Pink Floyd would release more DVDs on making their albums and songs.

    Pink Floyd represented more than just a band in that they created music in which they engineered and brought to life. It seems preposterous that I could say they brought the music to life but what other word could be used which best describes the sound of Pink Floyd and David Gilmour.

    Making of “The Dark Side of the Moon” showed that there was enough creativity to go around within the band. David, Richard, Nick and Roger gave fantastic interviews and insight into the making of the album.

    One problem that I had with Best Buy was I was going to go ahead and purchase “Oh, By the Way…” and LiG 5 box but they didn’t have it in stock. There were plenty at the warehouse, but I would have to order online. Seems as though they are still underestimating the selling power of David and Pink Floyd.

    I’ll do that next month…

    Momentary Lapse of Reason is my favorite Pink Floyd album of the ’80s. I have listened to and like “Final Cut” but not as much as MLoR.

    About Face is a great album as well as David’s first solo project.

    1. G’day Bruce,

      I recently got myself “The Great Gig in the Sky”. It’s an 8 DVD, album by album set. I’ve read some not so good reviews about it but for me it’s priceless. I don’t think it’s a Pink Floyd release.

      Do you have P.U.L.S.E?? This is another great DVD (VHS Hi-Fi video).

      The “Live in Gdansk” DVD is another jaw dropper, maybe not a Floyd release but just as good.

      I was an 80s fan as I turned 17 in 1980, lots of good memories.

      My LP collection is 80% 80s, list to follow.

  4. The Synth sounds in the 80s are what make the music horrible for me. They didn’t age very well… even “On the Run” from Dark Side of the Moon sounds fresh compared to some of the music.

    Eagles in Belfast next Tue, Fed… report will follow.

    Cheers
    Paul

    1. Looking forward to that, Paul.

      That reminds me, I need to order train tickets. I’m seeing them in Birmingham the following week.

    2. That reminds me, I need to order train tickets. I’m seeing them in Birmingham the following week.

      FEd, I hope you enjoy your time in Birmingham. The area around the NIA is really nice now especially down by the canals. The canalside has been revamped and is a great success.

      The city centre has lots of nice architecture and now that New Street is pedestrianised it is a fatanstic place. Funnily enough, I used to walk past Julian Smith of Britain’s Got Talent fame and enjoyed his soprano saxophone playing.

      Enjoy the concert too.

  5. Well, I always thought that the eighties had not been the worst period for the music I love. Nineties were worse… but reading the titles you put in your post remind me of those years, and the mood I was in then… Sledgehammer, Mind Set On You, Imagine, Jealous Guy… all those pieces speak to me, and remind me of these years.

    Finally, music is a way to remember, and for many of us, life is rhythmed by songs, tunes, that make a deep impact in your brain. Well, look at Forrest Gump! 😀

  6. I’m in a state of shock, I actually had to whittle this list down. I thought I’d be pushing it to come up with five:

    Blondie – Atomic
    Fergal Sharkey – A Good Heart
    Kraftwerk – The Model/Computer Love
    Nena – 99 Red Balloons
    Pet Shop Boys – Always On My Mind
    Police – Every Breath You Take
    The Jam – Going Underground
    The Specials – Ghost Town
    Mike Oldfield – Moonlight Shadow
    UB40 – Red Red Wine

    I was going to include Bruce Springsteen’s ‘I’m On Fire’ but this guy does it better. 😛

  7. I loved Vienna and still do, one of those all time classics. It was used on the first episode of Ashes to Ashes when Alex went back to 1981.

    Another 80s song I remember liking a lot was Duel by Propaganda.

    The First Picture of you by the Lotus Eaters gives me goose bumps when I hear it now, beautiful song.

  8. Thank you for the video and all the links. I think ‘Vienna’ is a beautiful and epic song, but I found the video a little bit scary and it made me feel uncomfortable.

    I’m not a big fan of the Eighties, I find the music too superficial and lacking soul.

    So, no list of favourites, I just chose one song per country in your list of 12.

    – US: Guns N’ Roses – ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’
    – UK: Simple Minds – ‘Belfast Child’
    – Germany: Richard Sanderson – ‘Reality’ (Because of the lovely movie ‘La Boum’ with Sophie Marceau, where we can hear this song)
    – Australia: Michael Jackson – ‘Billie Jean’
    – France: Ennio Morricone – ‘Chi Mai’
    – New Zealand: The Rolling Stones – ‘Harlem Shuffle’
    – Italy: Pippo Franco – ‘Chi Chi Chi Co Co Co’ (Just because I like the sound of the title) :))

    – Austria: Status Quo – ‘In The Army Now’
    – Norway: Sam Brown – ‘Stop’
    – Switzerland: Enya – ‘Orinoco Flow’
    – Netherlands: Dire Straits – ‘Private Investigations’
    – Belgium: ABBA – ‘Super Trouper’ (Just to make you wave your pointy stick) 😛

    Michèle

    1. I’m not a big fan of the Eighties, I find the music too superficial and lacking soul.

      That’s so very true.

    2. – Italy: Pippo Franco – ‘Chi Chi Chi Co Co Co’ (Just because I like the sound of the title) :))

      I’m so happy you chose it only for the title, Michèle. :))

  9. quero deixar meu elogiu pelo fabuloso trabalho composto de uma grande qualidade musical no DAVID GILMOUR – LIVE IN GDANSK.

    jurandir soares

    VITORIA PERNAMBUCO BRASIL

  10. Oh, the ’80s… 8|

    There were a LOT of horrific songs during that decade… in my opinion.

    Excellent call on ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’, FEd. I don’t even know where to begin with that mess.

    I have to throw in this rubbish as well.

    And now because I’ve even thought about that song, it’s stuck in my mind. The worst ones tend to do that. 😛

    On the other hand, very good calls on your favorites too, FEd.

    ‘Got My Mind Set on You’ and ‘Sledgehammer’ were some of my absolute favorites from the ’80s. I loved the videos for both as well. I like ‘Big Time’ as well. ‘With or Without You’ was brought to my attention thanks to my dad. I do remember having the LP for Thriller (I really need to find out what happened to that too), and I cannot lie about the fact that I think Jackson’s ‘Smooth Criminal’ is a great song too.

    I also used to be in possession of a “45” of ‘Abracadabra’ and ‘Maneater’ (yeah, I know :v). I used to listen to those two songs repeatedly and I even remember what my little plastic record player looked like.

    I can’t believe I even remember all of that really. I was 3 or 4 years old at the time. Oy…

    1. ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’ brings me out in a nasty rash.

      Did you ever see, courtesy of YouTube, two people (who I suspect had escaped from a mental hospital) auditioning for ‘American Idol’-esque ‘X Factor’ with that song, complete with painted whiskers, lion print gloves and oh-so funny tails?

      Simon Cowell’s face at the end, a mixture of disgust and disbelief, says it all – have a look.

      With the sound turned off, naturally.

    2. No sound and still… gag me with a soup ladle! Whatever made those broads think that whole act would be a huge hit with the judges?

      I am dying at the judges’ reactions though. Especially at Simon Cowell’s face at the end, as you mentioned. :))

    3. Oh dear. Having watched it again, I realise I must have imagined the painted whiskers, which is slightly worrying. But just one word compensates for the lack of face paint: Lycra.

      Sticking with a songs-from-the-Eighties-covered-badly-in-reality-TV-show-auditions-with-hilarious-results theme, does anyone remember this wonderful moment from ‘American Idol’?

      Two words: God Bless.

    4. I love these crazy auditions. :))

      I don’t think I could even try and list 10. There were many more great 80s songs for me.

      Has anyone mentioned “Tainted Love” by Soft Cell?

      I loved to follow the Top 40 singles charts on Sunday afternoons back then. Every week was exciting. Top of the Pops was good, too.

    5. Oh, Lycra… You’re so right, FEd. *shudders in horror* I just watched that video again. I’m just going to say it – Those two make me want to gouge my eyes out.

      I’ve never seen that little gem from American Idol you posted. That was one of those folks that makes me gasp loudly when the singing starts. I thought he was going to vomit at several points during the audition too. He made me want to gag! I also just love it when they randomly start singing again while they’re receiving negative critiques.

  11. Thanks for the link to the world charts, FEd.

    My list:

    John Lennon – Imagine
    Dire Straits – Money for Nothing
    The Police – Every Breath You Take
    Michael Jackson – Man in the Mirror
    Genesis – Invisible Touch
    Eurythmics – Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)
    Mike Oldfield – Moonlight Shadow
    Queen & David Bowie – Under Pressure
    U2 – With or Without You
    David Bowie & Mick Jagger – Dancing in the Street

    1. ‘Money for Nothing’…

      We’ll do Classic Promo Videos soon. Bet that one will come up (and ‘Sledgehammer’).

  12. After looking through lists from more countries and wondering why even performers you like didn’t seem to be at their best in the ’80s, here are 10 from me, some for fun, others more truly loved, and some associating to special memories. Darn, it’s a long time ago.

    Mike Oldfield – Moonlight Shadow
    Madness – House of Fun
    Tracy Chapman – Fast Car
    The Police – Don’t Stand So Close To Me
    Eurythmics – There Must Be An Angel
    Michael Jackson – Wanna Be Starting Something (I always wondered what it is, the choir sings at the end?)
    Prince – When Doves Cry
    Pet Shop Boys – Always On My Mind
    Nena – 99 Red Balloons
    Falco – Der Kommissar (watch the video – priceless kitsch)

    1. Great video, Lene. :))

      By the way, we’ll also have a day to discuss the Best Female Vocalist before too long. Annie Lennox will rank highly, I’m sure.

  13. hi FEd,

    back posting here after a while…

    so as a profound lover of the ’80s, this is a very welcome one. here goes…

    1. Der Kommissar – Falco (obvious choice for someone born and living in Vienna)
    2. Mike Oldfield w/ Maggie Reilly – Moonlight Shadow
    3. David Bowie – Let’s Dance
    4. Mr. Mister – Broken Wings
    5. Tears for Fears – Everybody Wants To Rule The World
    6. Level 42 – Lessons In Love
    7. Peter Gabriel – Sledgehammer
    8. INXS – Suicide Blonde
    9. Simple Minds – Don’t You Forget About Me
    10. Mike & The Mechanics – Living Years

    seriously, I could go on forever, so many artists not included here. apart form the floyd, for me personally most obviously U2 and the police.

    the ’80s being a crappy period for music, I really couldn’t agree less. what a great decade for courageous, well crafted, visionary pop music, sth. utterly rare these days…

    cheers, bernhard

    1. Some classic tracks there, Bernhard.

      Tears for Fears were good. I always liked ‘Sowing the Seeds of Love’, even if it was an obvious Beatles rip-off.

  14. These are based on your link Fed, I would have struggled otherwise:

    Bruce Hornsby – That’s The Way It Is (still like this)
    Christopher Cross – Sailing (don’t like it now)
    Daryl Hall & John Oates – I Can’t Go For That (at least one of them is still employed, as seen on TV doing the 118-118 adverts)
    Dire Straights – Money for Nothing (I can play this, after a fashion)
    J. Geil’s Band – Centrefold (still like it)
    Kenny Loggins – Footloose (still like this too, what’s wrong with me?)
    Men at Work – Down Under (yup, this still does it for me)
    Survivor – Eye of the Tiger (shame, I threw out my grey trackies)
    UB40 – Red Red wine
    Yes – Owner of a Lonely Heart

    Cringe video link – here.

    Dress down day tomorrow at work, dare me, go on.

    OK, you win.

    1. Now the office is humming “U can’t touch this”, no dancing though… yet. Vanilla Ice would go down a treat now Fed.

      Oh! That Vanilla Ice.

  15. Hi Fed,

    Back from Scotland and we survived Rockness, lots of crap on but worth seeing Orbital.

    Dare I say! I’m a bit of a Spandau Ballet fan and off to see them in Oct.

    Damian

  16. After reading these responses, this thread should have probably been titled “Eighties Number Twos”.

  17. The 80s…

    For me totally dominated by my children being born and growing. So from that period I remember Rod, Jane and Freddy and Rainbow very well.

    Musically I remember:

    Owner of a Lonely Heart – Yes
    An album by Asia
    Three albums by different formats of Pink Floyd

    1. The 80s… For me totally dominated by my children being born and growing.

      I was in the same situation as you, Pete.

      Total Eclipse Of The Heart – Bonnie Tyler always comes to mind when my 1st born came along. Even though the dreadful Too Shy(te) – Catch-a-poo-poo were actually at #1 when Ben was born.

      When my daughter, Sarah, was born it was Easy Lover – Philip Bailey & Phil Collins on top of the pile.

      The whole of the ’80s seemed to me to have been overwhelmed by Phil Collins pouring his heart out here, there and everywhere… Tenuous link time, apparently David Crosby sang backing vocals on ‘Another Day In Paradise’. But Seriously.

      Despite the 80s being a decade of decadence and kitsch, I recall seeing some pretty good gigs. David’s About Face, Pink Floyd’s Delicate Sound Of Thunder, Rainbow’s Down To Earth, Queen’s Magic Tour and even Genesis’ Invisible Touch.

      Just heard on the news about Michael Jackson’s passing… 😮

  18. The 80s…

    For me totally dominated by my children being born and growing. So from that period I remember Rod, Jane and Freddy and Rainbow very well.

    Musically I remember:

    Owner of a Lonely Heart – Yes
    An album by Asia
    Three albums by different formats of Pink Floyd

  19. My favorite bands from the 80s:

    Tears for Fears
    The Police
    Kate Bush
    R.E.M.
    Camper Van Beethoven
    Hindu Love Gods (R.E.M. with Warren Zevon)
    Talking Heads
    UB40

    My LEAST favorite bands:

    Phil Collins
    ABBA
    Christopher Cross
    Beastie Boys
    Vanilla Ice

  20. The best thing that happened musically in the 1980s was the King Crimson album Discipline.

    The worst thing was Frankie Goes to Hollywood!

    1. Aren’t opinions great? I personally am a huge fan of Frankie Goes to Hollywood. The track ‘Welcome to the Pleasuredome’ is fantastic. As a matter of fact I love every song on the album with the title of the same name as the aforementioned track. There is also some great guitar playing on that album.

      My top ten eighties songs are (not necessarily in this order):

      Gary Numan – Our Friends Electric
      David Bowie – Let’s Dance
      Frankie Goes to Hollywood – Two Tribes
      Human League – Sound of the Crowd
      The Specials – Ghost Town
      Madness – Baggie Trousers (I have been a Madness fan from day one)
      Kraftwerk – Model
      Orchestral Manoeuvrs in the Dark – Enola Gay
      Michael Jackson – Billie Jean
      Michael Jackson – Beat It

      Rest in peace, Michael.

  21. FEd,

    I agree with the point taken that 80s music affects people in different ways. It’s hard to do a list because that decade was like someone else said, one of raising children so not much focus on music of the 80s. Didn’t like it compared to the 70s and late 60s.

    Still was into Pink Floyd then and your new solo albums. Liked that more than anything and played DSOM even though 10 years old. My daughter memorized the lyrics in the car when she was 4.

    The link you put to the “X Factor” and Simon Cowell’s face was really funny. :))

    I would disagree about the favorite female vocalist being Annie Lenox. For me it will always be Joni Mitchell. Here is a nice video of her and I tend to like this song a lot.

    Her live performances were as good if not better than her studio records and a lot of times in concert she would play new songs from an album about to be released and you would think “why can’t we hear what we like?” Then months down the road when the new songs were hits, we were glad she introduced it to us live.

    Sorry just not inspired enough with music of this decade to do a “Top 10”.

    Enjoy your concert in a couple of weeks. 8)

    Patricia

    1. An all time fav of mine as well, but her best work was…

      …wait for it…

      …in the seventies. 8)

      Court and Spark is a masterpiece.

  22. Hi, FEd.

    Oh well, the 80s are my favourites years. I remember this period and I listen to these songs now again!

    My list from my Blog categories “Back to the 80s”:

    Tears for Fears – “Head over Heels”- Album: “Songs From The Big Chair” (1985)
    Dire Straits – “Brothers in Arms” (1985)
    Level 42 – “Something About You” – Album: “Level Best” (1986)
    Brian Ferry – “Is Your Love Strong Enough”? – Soundtrack “Legend” (1985)
    Paul McCartney -“Once Upon A Long Ago” – Album: “All The Best” (1987)
    Alan Parsons Project – “Eye In The Sky” (1982)
    Midnight Oil – “Beds are Burning” – Album: “Diesel and Dust” (1988)
    Kate Bush -“Running Up That Hill” – Album: “Hounds of Love” (1985)
    Tina Turner – “We Don’t Need Another Hero” (Thunderdome) – Soundtrack “Mad Max” (1985)
    Village People – “5 O’Clock In The Morning”- Album: “Renaissance” (1981)

    Maybe this decade has been too commercial, but, as you can see in my list, these are some of the best songs that contribute the history of contemporary music.

    Bye, Hydrea 😀

  23. Has anyone noticed that quite a lot of our favorite songs of the ’80s were performed by artists who were established in the ’70s or earlier? But, the ’80s did bring us, off the top of my head;

    Crowded House
    Tears For Fears
    U2
    REM

    On the negative side, we also had “Hair Metal”, which alone should prevent any sane person from further ’80s exploration. All of that hairspray must have left a huge carbon footprint!

    Cheers;
    Bill C

    1. :)) A frightening thought, Bill.

      I still feel that the mullet has to be the finest hairstyle on display throughout the Eighties.

      The decade’s best mullet, anyone? Steve Perry’s gets my vote.

      And, if I’m not mistaken, I believe he had a Number One in 1984…

    2. Mullets are too funny. :))

      Does it have to be someone who had a mullet in the 80s and went to No 1?

      If so, Rod Stewart (Baby Jane). Check it out.

    3. Rod’s mullet is impressive, I’ll give him that.

      I think we’ve both overlooked George Michael’s 1986 performance of ‘A Different Corner’ on Top of the Pops.

      As you’ll probably agree, it truly is a sight to behold (especially when twinned with brown leather).

  24. I would have to say my list of bands are:

    David Gilmour
    Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
    The Clash
    Pink Floyd
    Neil Young
    The Pretenders
    Social Distortion
    The Psychedelic Furs
    Steve Winwood
    Eric Clapton

  25. Fed, I just wanted to add that if you get a chance give a new soloist a listen. His name is Jamison Young and I think you’ll really enjoy his music.

    Have a great weekend,
    Thomas

  26. Didnt Luke and Laura get married in the 80s?

    Oh dear, I’ve said too much… :v

  27. Sticking with my unnecessarily narrow format of all UK No 1’s and one per year, I come up with:

    1980 = The Jam – Going Underground
    1981 = The Specials – Ghost Uown
    1982 = Madness – House of Fun (filmed in our very own Great Yarmouth, a house of fun in no sense at all)
    1983 = Whacko – Billie Jean
    1984 = Band Aid – Do they Know it’s Christmas
    1985 = Madge – Into the Groove
    1986 = The Communards – Don’t Leave Me This Way
    1987 = * I give up*
    1988 = Yazz – The Only Way Is Up (which after 1987 is at least true)
    1989 = Madge again (feat Guymundo Pratt) – Like a Prayer

    So we start in depressed war-torn Thatcher land and end in vacuous poppy boom-town Thatcher land.

    Ah, the memories…

  28. Hi Fed and everybody!

    The topic of today is really a coincidence. What do you think of the death of Michael Jackson? David was a little bit influenced by his music, although it is not the same style at all.

    I think nobody could not be indifferent to Michael; in the eighties it was such good music, a good beat and a new style. And you Fed, are you touched by his death?

    By the way I am happy to talk to you after such a long time!!! 😉

    1. I’m very happy to talk to you, too. 🙂

      I am saddened by Michael Jackson’s death. I adored him throughout my childhood.

      He was ’80s music for me, something exciting and unique in a musical decade of small talents, big hair, effeminate-looking men in make-up and weak power ballads. I loved his eccentricities and his dancing. I loved the fact that the world’s biggest star was black (even if it seemed as though he wanted to be white). It was as if he came down from another planet, wasn’t it?

  29. It may just be my taste in music, but I never really enjoyed much music from the 80s. When I think of that decade, I think hair bands, Bret Michaels, Boy George… etc.

    It may also be because I wasn’t even thought of in the 80s, but that is besides my point.

    But don’t get me wrong, there was some pretty good stuff from that decade: U2, REO Speedwagon, and the later Pink Floyd albums, just to name a few.

    REO Speedwagon tends to get overlooked, really? They have some great chord changes. But, if you’re more of a new millennium music fan, chord changes are totally out and everything is about the melody and words. Maybe even pulsing beats. I have no idea, I hardly listen to anything that’s not older than my parents, or very close to it. :v

    But anyway, the 1980s definitely wasn’t the best decade for music. It nowhere near compares to the amazing talent and originality that came out of the 60s and 70s.

  30. I’d like to add Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean. The moonwalk move is the ultimate dance move ever created.

    Sad day to hear about his passing. At least he can rest now and be remembered for what he truly was worth, not the crap that he went through. 🙁

    1. Well said, Frank. I’m just waiting for some of his ‘celebrity friends’ to start spewing out hypocrisy.

      His life was a circus, so I don’t see why his death won’t be.

      Shame.

    2. Frank and FEd,

      I remember my daughter trying to learn how to do the moonwalk from Billie Jean.

      Michael Jackson really had his own style in those music videos, not black or white, just Michael. I think because of this he transcended all racial barriers and national boundaries. He was adored and loved all over the world.

      Of course I never believed the stuff about his criminal charge and trial about abuse. I think that led to his demise because he remained a recluse until he recently started rehearsing for the London concerts July 13 and he planned to bring some new moves for old fans and new ones.

      Already the headlines have started in the US “Did he die of drugs”. I wish the press would give him a break.

      A very kind and sweet soul who was one of the best entertainers of all time. He will be surely be missed. But his music and videos of his dancing will last forever. I think some day he will be the “Fred Astaire” of our time.

      Patricia

  31. Wow, ironic or just odd that this blog entry goes up and Michael Jackson dies.

    I was not a huge fan of his music but it is pretty cool that Eddie Van Halen played along side him on the Thriller album. Those songs are probably some of his best.

    Thanks.

    Andrew

  32. I never considered myself a fan of Michael Jackson, but I loved some of his songs in the past and, in my mind, he has always been a sort of symbol of the 80s.

    I’m sad to know he’s passed away and I’m also sure they’ll immediately try to exploit his death, as they did with his life.

    I was reading the news on the web, when I found a picture of him while the doctors were trying to resuscitate him.

    Maybe that’s exactly what some people want to see, but, for me, I think there is actually no respect in publishing something like that.

    1. None whatsoever.

      The desperate need that some people have to push themselves ever closer to those in the public eye – whether it be to boost egos or bank balances – sickens me at the best times, but to do so at a time like this is disgraceful.

    2. I’ve never been much of a fan of Michael Jackson’s music either. I’ve always felt sympathy for him as a person, goodness only knows what it took to turn that gorgeous wee boy that sang ‘Ben’ into, what looked to me anyway, to be a very troubled soul.

    3. Its a sad sign of the times when the media is allowed to get away with such thoughtless, heartless muck raking just to sell a few thousand/million more copies of their yellow journalism.

      I can remember the media frenzy when Elvis died in 1977. My family and I were on vacation in Toronto and you wouldn’t believe the media coverage there regarding his death. Thankfully I was too young to remember (or even care) about all the sensationalistic tabloid details being dredged up by the slime calling themselves ‘journalists’ at the time. This can’t be any easier for his family and close friends.

    4. It’s a sad sign of the times when the media is allowed to get away with such thoughtless, heartless muck raking just to sell a few thousand/million more copies of their yellow journalism.

      Yesterday the news (more gossip than news) about Michael Jackson came in the first place in our TV news, before everything else.

      Of course, his music has been very important and, apart from tastes, no one can deny he’s been a mass phenomenon, but I think it’s a little exaggerated, for example, that what’s happening in Iran these days had to come after that.

      That’s how the media guide people’s attention.

  33. Did Joe Dolce not keep Vienna from Number One????????

    Anal Geoff Duffy (Dublin)

  34. I have to chime in here regarding Michael Jackson.

    He was a brilliant performer but that brilliance was forever dulled by his ego’s enablers as well as his questionable desires. I was a casual fan of The Jackson Five and one or two songs by Jackson himself so I cannot mourn his music although I can mourn the childhood he never had…

  35. Well, I was thinking of my list of songs from the 80s and then I heard about Michael Jackson dying. How tragic! So I dedicate my 80s music to him.

    The king of pop was what I listened to a lot in my teen years. I remember his first Pepsi commercial, I was 16 and I stayed home from school just to see it air. He will be missed, that’s for sure.

    Farrah Fawcett also died yesterday with a long battle of cancer, she too was my idol. I was one of the girls with the Farrah haircut. And the passing of Ed McMahon this week, I was always hoping he would show up at my door with the sweepstakes winning, he was always giving out.

    These were big icons, they will always be remembered by me.

  36. It’s funny (or is it sad?) how much praise people get when they die, even if they have been criticized during all their life.

    I have no problem with the media paying all sorts of tributes to Michael Jackson or with the music industry making a lot of money by exploiting his death (after all, nobody forces us to buy anything, if we do, we are to blame too).

    But I feel very uncomfortable when I see how the ‘event’ itself has been covered by the media (eg, what Alessandra said and the news following the helicopter carrying his body to the coroner’s office.) No respect. Disgusting.

    I appreciated him as a genius dancer.

    Here is a video that I like very much. Maybe the quality is not be good, but it doesn’t matter…

    Wasn’t he a lovely child?

    Michèle

    1. It’s funny (or is it sad?) how much praise people get when they die, even if they have been criticized during all their life.

      It’s true. When they die, they suddenly become saints.

      Anyway, there is also no sense in criticizing someone without knowing him, but some people think to know someone only reading about him on newspapers and magazines.

      Maybe it makes them feel as they were more important, that’s why the gossip sell so much, I think.

  37. Hi FEd,

    For starters, MJ’s passing is indeed a sad day. He was a turning point in pop music culture and set a standard that has yet to be matched.

    As far as bands, I was listening to a lot of Def Leppard, AC/DC, Metallica, G&R etc. Attire aside, these bands rocked it out pretty good. My sisters were big fans of Cheap Trick, Journey, Mr. Mister, Styx, and REO Speedwagon.

    My ’80s list would look like:

    “Back in Black” album- AC/DC
    “Photograph”- Def Leppard
    “Sweet Child o Mine” G&R
    “The Turn of a Friendly Card” album- Alan Parsons Project
    “Mr. Roboto”-Styx
    “Walk This Way”- Aerosmith w/ Run D.M.C.
    “Bust a Move”- Young MC

    There are others that elude me right now, but that’s a start.

    I don’t remember seeing Duran Duran mentioned yet- kind of surprising. “Hungry Like the Wolf” is still engrained in my memory.

    Gotta love the 80s- It’s still my favorite VH1 series. 😀

    1. I’m still a big fan of Alan Parsons Project, Styx and AC/DC.

      I have to give Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers some props as well. Purchased Damn the Torpedos under advisement of Stereo Review Magazine and absolutely loved the Album and all that followed for the band.

  38. The 80s were never a favorite time of mine for music. I had become more musically attuned to bands whose hayday I had missed (Pink Floyd, The Who, Led Zeppelin) and I was desperate to catch up on those back catalogues. In the process I scoffed at the offerings of that decade… until college. Bands like Journey, REO, Styx, Foreigner littered the airwaves while older acts were fast becoming the classics of today.

    Still, there were enough worthwhile songs to enjoy (thanks, in no small part, to that funny thing called MTV).

    Here’s a chicken-scratch list of #1s that I enjoyed during that musically turbulent decade:

    Queen & David Bowie – Under Pressure
    The Jam – Start!
    The Jam – Town Called Malice
    The Police – Don’t Stand So Close To Me
    The Police – Every Breath You Take
    The Police – Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic
    The Pretenders – Brass in Pocket
    John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over
    David Bowie – Ashes To Ashes
    Band Aid – Do They Know It’s Christmas?

    Its funny, now, that I’m more forgiving for most of the bands that I list above. Its not that the music they played was bad, nor that the DJs were instructed to flood the airwaves with their hit tunes, its just that I was more interested in my favorites to be bothered with the new pop pablum of the time. Go figure.

    Thank heavens we still had Pink Floyd, The Who, Gilmour and Waters, The Firm (yup, I’m nuts), Queen, Aerosmith, and others of their ilk still creating some pretty nice music for the time. Cheers!

    1. Glad to see The Police mentioned here. How could I forget them? They were a fantastic band.

  39. The Eighties were kind of fun musically. I really got a kick out of some of the New Wave bands like Oingo Boingo, DEVO and the B52’s as that music was intelligent but was also fun to hear. The return of Pink Floyd was also a highlight during the 80s as I got to see 2 shows during their L.A. Sports Arena residence over Thanksgiving weekend.

    In a way the 80s was kind of a “recovery from the 70s” decade as I really hated the Disco thing, not so much for the music but for the attitudes that went with it. It was a relief to get away from some of the pompousness of the 70s and just enjoy things again.

  40. My issue with the majority of 80s music were bands like Oingo Boingo, DEVO and the B52’s, Bananrama, Human League, Flock of Seagulls, etc. were all too quirky and funny. They relied too much on fashion and too little on substance.

    I was spoiled rotten in the 70s and never really recovered from the banquet that was laid before me.

  41. Will miss you all and will have to catch up when I return. Off to my sisters to welcome her new grandchild and also a wedding reception, the off to see my dad for a few days.

    See you in a week or so.

    Yes, FE’d missed you, but always glad when you get back. Thanks for keeping this all going.

    (Isn’t the Astoria just gorgeous?)

    Jan

  42. The 80-ies… going out in the local venue for students; Stufa, with new wave, ska, die Deutsche Well and Rock (Jethro Tull, Frank Zappa, Yes), the first big love…

    Simple Minds, U2, Police, Dire Straits, Joe Jackson, seeing Floyd, Genesis, Roger Waters, Marillion for the first time…

    Thriller – Michael Jackson… R.I.P.

  43. 8| I made a big mistake of language. I meant; Was David influenced by Michael’s music? Not David was influenced by his music…. Sorry Mr. Gilmour…

    But I think it is not a bad comparison… with all my respect.

  44. What a great decade for music (thanks for the link FEd), here´s my list (I resisted listing the obvious BananaRama one, LOL): 😉

    1. Billie Jean – Michael Jackson
    2. One Vision – Queen
    3. The Power of Love – Frankie Goes to Hollywood
    4. Gold – Spandau Ballet
    5. Paradise City – Guns n Roses
    6. Against All Odds – Phil Collins
    7. It Must Be Love – Madness
    8. Being Boiled – The Human League
    9. Greatest Love of All – Whitney Houston (Live at Statue of Liberty)
    10. If You Don´t Know Me By Now – Simply Red

    Obviously there are many many more that I could go on forever listing if I didn´t want a wine ASAP. Namaste.

  45. I am not a Michael Jackson fan, but he is a fascinating figure. Was a fan of Jackson 5, when I was a kid too.

    I remember a TV special in which they played all of my favorites. They had no instruments and were all on the same rug. It was not until later that Michael Jackson became an interesting character: the glove, the child molestation stuff, the lightening of his skin, the plastic surgery, and the lavish lifestyle.

    I think that Michael Jackson was a person who disliked himself (why else would he have changed his physical appearance so dramatically? — not just a nip and tuck like other celebrities, but a dramatic change). And the more bizarre it got, the more interesting he was. And the more dramatic.

    I think different people will remember him for different things. I will remember the tragic figure.

  46. Off topic, sorry.

    I found this news on some websites today, this is only one of them.

    Since it doesn’t seem official news (because I couldn’t find it in any official newspapers, websites or agencies), “The man behind the world’s biggest online MJ fan club”, to quote the article, should be very careful to give it out to the world. Doesn’t he realize the possible consequences?

    Lots of blogs and forums all around the world are now sharing this news and discussing it, taking for granted it’s all true.

    Going on this way, it doesn’t matter if it happened or not, because, probably, someone will make it real soon.

    1. Then, why do you inform us/another blog about this crap ‘news’? 😛

    2. :! I picked it up somewhere (Twitter?) and assumed it was true.

      There are a lot of irresponsible people out there, blurting out half-truths and rumours to the waiting world. I guess it’s no big deal to them if they don’t have to deal with the consequences, but you’d like to think that they’d have a bit more consideration (for his fans if nobody else).

      And aren’t there plenty of people waiting, like rats with their noses twitching, for a new scrap of information to tear to pieces? It’s enough to make you sick.

    3. :)) You’re right, Michèle. I was thinking the same while I was writing the message, but I couldn’t resist and I had to share it.

      As you, FEd, I also read it somewhere and I thought it was true, then I looked for a confirmation, because I had the time to do it and I was online for other reasons.

      I can’t imagine how many times I believe something (even more important than this) it’s true, because I can’t check it.

      Anyway, I don’t know if the news has now been confirmed or not. If it wasn’t, I think the man who invented it is very irresponsible.

      Yes, a bit more consideration would be good.

  47. FEd,

    Noted alot of feedback regarding the passing of Michael Jackson. Lots of media coverage in the US also. I believe that world known artists such as MJ, Elvis, Eddy Arnold, etc., deserve the media attention for the mark they have made in the world. These artists have touched every life in one way or another and of course in their time frames.

    I really appreciate venues like VH1 classics for their coverage when a great personality passes. They did wonderful tributes to Syd on the anniversary of his passing and Richard on his passing. VH1 seems to hit them all with great music and information on the singer/artist. My preference to the typical news media.

    Love to the world.

  48. One post here made me think…

    Has anybody ever noticed that many of the most popular bands of the 1970s were formed in the 1960s? And I even have late 1960s clothes shop ads featuring Afghan coats, flared trousers, maxi skirts, etc.

    So many “70s fashions” are really 1960s. What was cutting edge fashion in 1967/1968 was being worn by the likes of Noele Gordon in Crossroads by 1973!

    The 70s were the 60s hangover decade, when the brilliant music of the mid-to-late 1960s slowly went stale. I remember hearing songs in the mid-1970s and wondering if they were mid-to-late 1960s.

    But the 70s revival of the 1950s was excellent.

    The ’80s were, like the ’70s, another decade of music.

    I don’t really agree with rewriting decades to massage my ego.

  49. As for me I really liked some music from the 80s.

    Some from Metallica/Guns n Roses/ Nirvana. And other pop music too from Michael Jackson/Madonna.

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