Something a little lighter today, huh? A little Hall & Oates, a little song about New York City, a little 1982 sound and look, a little “Maneater”. Love that bass groove.
I was checking the weather – it’s thirty-eight F right now, suny and clear – when I noticed the neighbors. Monday has begun. The weekend is over. Elementary and high school students walk down to catch buses or walk to school. The college students leave next. Neighbors drive off to work. Each departs at the same times Monday through Friday, except for Holidays.
The slow but regular daily exodus reminds me of the 1982 Loverboy song, “Working for the Weekend”. Loverboy was a hot flash in the early 1980s, coming out of Canada to storm the world with a number of hits. I was living on Okinawa, and I can tell you, they were very popular in the music clubs there. It has that eighties techno-rock sound to me.
Anyway, from the looks on the faces most people had today, most looked like they were sighing and trudging. They seemed more energetic last weekend.
I stole this song off of John Scalzi’s post from earlier this week.
I’d never heard of Burning Sensations or their MTV hit, “Burning of the Whale”. I listened to it and was intrigued. It appears to be about a guy living in a whale, and the production is a bite out of the eighties, just in a slightly different direction. I figure it’s a good theme song because it’s an artistic attempt, and it’s different, and they tried, and these things are what art is about, no matter which venue we pursue. Have a dream, apply some imagination and work, and put it out there.
You get a twofer today.
This photo on Facebook reminded a friend and I of a conversation we once had about the songs, “Our House”. One version is by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. Madness did the other. We just chatted about how different these songs were as we went about something else.
I haven’t seen him since around 2003 but I remember him fondly. FB connects us, so sometimes FB works as designed.
I have friends who love this song, “The Safety Dance” (1982). It is quite catchy, and troubling for me, once it’s in my ear, it’s hard to dislodge. Those lyrics —
We can dance if we want to
We can leave your friends behind
‘Cause your friends don’t dance and if they don’t dance
Well, they’re no friends of mine
Say, we can go where we want to
A place where they will never find
And we can act like we come from out of this world
Leave the real one far behind
And we can dance
The words are easy to exploit to use for other purposes. For example, I have sung to my cats, “You can eat if you want to, or you can leave your food behind. But if you don’t eat, you won’t get a treat, and it’s your fault, not mine.”
So, here, enjoy “Men Without Hats”.
Continuing a newly established trend of using my walking to inspire my theme music instead of my dreams and pets, this song popped into my head today.
I’m not an amazing walker, but I usually manage to walk seven to ten miles a day, typically in three or four segments. I like walking as part of my writing rituals. But once I’m done writing in my head, my thoughts wander. Sometimes, inspired by the writing or editing process, a song pops in.
So it was today. Finishing with my phantom writing/editing and feeling happy, I told my muses and myself, “That’s it. We got it.” That prompted the drumming intro to the popular hit by The Go-Go’s (a spelling which maddens me, as I think that it should be The Go-Gos, but whatever), “We Got the Beat” (1982).
Just yesterday, I was walking along, thinking, here I go again, naturally downloading the White Snake song, “Here I Go Again” (1982).
Although I respected Coverdale’s skills and talents, except for Deep I never became a great fan of him. I tried. I had White Snake albums and Coverdale-Page (where I thought Coverdale often sounded like Plant, with the overall result that C-P sounded like Led Zeppelin), but I thought there was too much glam-rock to Coverdale after DP. I thought the glam-rock sub-genre was often derivative, simplistic, and repetitive.
That doesn’t stop me from thinking of this song when I take a deep breath and tell myself, here I go again.
I was streaming “Eye of the Tiger” (Survivor, 1982) in my head as I was cleaning the carpets today.
“Eye of the Tiger” is one of those songs that was released and gained popularity while my wife and I lived outside of America working for Uncle Sam. In this case, we were at Kadena AB, Okinawa, Japan. I was mostly working twelve-hour shifts in the 603rd MASS Command Post. Between those shifts and typhoons, it seems like we didn’t hear much from the outside world. When we visited Hawaii on leave, we discovered that McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets were the next greatest thing, MTV had launched and was gaining popularity, and Rocky III was the hot movie, with “Eye of the Tiger” as the movie’s defining song.
It all seemed a little surreal.
I worked with an officer while stationed at Shaw AFB, SC. He was a navigator who graduated college with a degree in Literature, and he wrote poetry on the side.
Music of the era set him off. He thought the lyrics were shallow and the liberties taken with grammar annoyed him. People used to sing in full, coherent sentences, telling a story, he would say, and the songs were often very poetic. He was my age, and it amused me that this upset him, because that’s not what popular music is about. It’s a reflection of the times and how language is used. It’s dynamic. Those were exactly some of the things that he mourned as going wrong.
I remember once we were getting ready to deploy to Egypt. Killing time as we had to do in those situations, we talked music, and he singled out this song, which had been released a few years before, as one that he particularly disliked – his exact words. His diatribe made me laugh.
Here is Eddy Grant with “Electric Avenue” from 1982.