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What was the 80's in music? (culture and society)

Discussion in '80's Music' started by cnbpjb, Jun 17, 2005.

  1. cnbpjb

    cnbpjb Senior Member

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    Jun 11, 2005
    Since someone started in decade of 1970's a thread about music & what trends were in that decade; I'd thought I'd start one about 1980's. Personally the 1980's were coming of age decade for me, I was a junior in high school when decade began & as decade ended I had graduated from the University of South Florida & was working at library (not to far from home in a town called, New Port Richey, FL) -- but there were a lot of memorable things & not just in music (but most of this is going to be about music, but some of the changes & movement in all culture {TV, movies}, science, politics & society in general {other academic disciplines, sports, other leisure pursuits} certainly affected music {yeah, perhaps not as much as in 1970's & 1980's, but it did.}) All do this by year, & maybe some definite dates given, but if anyone has anything to add, by all means go ahead & add them.

    As decade of the 1980's began, a couple of events in 1979, had already started to make an impact or were about to on what would happen in the 1980's altogether. These events were:

    1. Margaret Thatcher being elected British Prime Minister[/B]

    2. President Jimmy Carter's administration being beset by problems amongst them: galore, inflation, oil crises {despite his warnings}, 52 American hostages in Iran, & the U.S.S.R. invasion of Afghanistan (on last day of 1979).

    3. Musically speaking, disco was coming to a close, although in next couple of months there were to be a couple of hit disco songs, especially by Donna Summer still going up the charts, including, the #1 song on Billboard's charts that started the decade: "Escape (The Pina Colada Song)" by Rupert Holmes & a little later a #1 song, "Funkytown" by Lipps, Inc.; but soon disco & much of the other music would soon be eclipsed by a new craze, "New Wave".

    4. One TV show that had yet to make an impact (& really wasn't that high in the Nielsen ratings at this point -- on CBS), but soon would be & make a major impact on the culture of the new decade was: "Dallas" -- remember that!

    5. Also on TV, after success of ABC News' "Nightline" precursor, about the 52 American hostages -- a new Atlanta, GA based cable news organization -- owned by businessman Ted Turner, CNN, was about to have very unforseen (at this time) influence on America & the world & even on music as already there was thought of continuous music videos on at least another cable network.


    1. Throughout year, Jimmy Carter's woes continue to mount over the year, as former B-grade actor & California Governor Ronald Reagan easily wins GOP nomination (or coranation), & then picks former rival, former U.S. Rep. & ambassador to China, George H.W. Bush as his Vice Presidential nominee. Carter himself has to fight for Democratic nomination, but does win it, but has to fend off a stiff challenge from Massachusetts U.S. Senator Edward "Ted" Kennedy. Carter also has to deal with 52 American hostage situation, including a very failed mission to rescue them in April of 1980, with result of eight American army men being killed in a helicopter crash in Iran.
    Also Carter will still have inflation issue (with Reagan and all GOP bringing up a phrase Carter unfortunately used in summer of 1979, about country being in a "malaise") & also decides in best interest to lead a Western boycott of many nations during Summer Olympics in Moscow, Russia, U.S.S.R. (The only seemingly brief news to cheer up Americans comes in February 1980, at Winter Olympics when U.S. hockey team surprisingly win the Gold medal, and speed ice skater, Eric Heiden wins 5 Gold medals in Lake Placid, N.Y.) And then Carter will have to deal with the fact that in summer of 1980, there's a huge heatwave throughout most of the country. This is also summer of Muriel boatlift of Cuban refugees, some that were known drug lords & addicts from Cuba -- but many will become American citizens -- Haitians will also try to come to the country the same way, but will not succeed.

    2. In May, Mount St. Helens volcano erupts in Washington state & in Florida a barge runs into Sunshine Skyway bridge (just south of Pinellas county, Florida) which kills several people (The bridge itself will not be rebuilt, but better, until 1987 & not reopen until 1988).

    3. Albums out this year, making much noise & selling very well: "Off The Wall" by Michael Jackson; "The Wall" by Pink Floyd, "The River" by Bruce Springsteen, "Glass Houses" by Billy Joel, "The Boss" by Diana Ross, and "The Game" by Queen.

    4. A couple of new music artists are making a lot & making it big of noise this year, amongst them are New Wave artists, Pat Benatar, the Pretenders, & the B-52's (Gary Numan has his only American hit this year, as well, w/ "Cars".) New Soft Rock artists, Kim Carnes, Christopher Cross, Air Supply (an Australian import), Barbra Streisand (a older Soft Rock artist) & Robbie Dupree also make it big & have huge hits this year & also country artist, Kenny Rogers.

    5. 1980 at movies start off w/ success of "Kramer vs. Kramer" in winter, then comes the success of "Coal Miner's Daughter", "Norma Rae" in spring & also success of "American Gigolo" starring a young, Richard Gere that spins off a huge hit single in "Call Me" by Blondie (that rejuvenates their career.) In summer several other movies make it big, including "The Blue Lagoon", "The Empire Strikes Back" (second movie in "Star Wars" saga), "Urban Cowboy", "One Trick Pony" (which helps to revive career of singer, Paul Simon), "The Blues Brothers", "Honeysuckle Rose", "Roadie", "The Rose" (which helps to revive career of singer, Bette Midler), & "Caddyshack" (with a huge hit single, "I'm Alright!" by rocker, Kenny Loggins) & also movie named, "Xanadu" which would help career of Olivia Newton John & Electric Light Orchestra, & in fall there is a hit movie of "Fame" (which sets off career of a singer we'd come to know as decade would progress, Irene Cara, w/ title song of movie -- & you would want to "remember her name".) In fall of 1980, movies such as "Ordinary People" (starring TV's longtime sweetheart, Mary Tyler Moore), "The Jazz Singer" (which would help revive career of Neil Diamond) & "9 To 5" (that would net country singer, Dolly Parton her only solo #1 song on Billboard Pop charts).

    6. In May, T.V. audience would be surprisingly huge for "cliffhangar" on "Dallas" for shooting of J.R. Ewing. Many people shortly after November 4th elections, would be glued to their sets for the resolution of "Who Shot J.R.?" (it was his sister-in-law). The major new show this year is spinoff of "Magnum, P.I.", "Simon & Simon".

    7. Walter Conkrite (sp?) announces his retirement from being longtime evening anchor CBS, for March 1981, his replacement will be Dan Rather.

    8. Of course on that November 4, 1980 election day, Ronald Reagan would defeat Carter for Carter's attempted re-election, with a 51% margin in the popular vote (electorially though it was a landslide, with Reagan taking 489 electoral votes). The GOP also takes control of the U.S. Senate, 54 - 46, for the first time in 25 years (yes, 1955). And although the Democrats retain control of the Governors and the U.S. House (they slide down 33 seats in the House). (Also it didn't help Carter any that Illinois U.S. Senator John Anderson {and one of the few liberal GOP members at the time} ran for President as an independent). The polls on the Friday before the election, though, still showed a close electorate and Reagan's huge electoral win was not predicted at that time. One news organization showing a lot of moxie during this election was the newcomer, CNN. BTW, an offshoot of this election is the rise of the so-called, "Moral Majority", which would have impact on the culture as a whole throughout the decade, that would continue into the next century.

    9. Iran goes to war against it's neighbor, Iraq, in the summer of 1980.

    10. Some sad news for Rock music happens on December 8, 1980; it is announced by Johnny Carson on NBC's "Tonight Show" that the former Beatle John Lennon has been shot to death in the garage of his and his wife, Yoko Ono's apartment building by a crazed fan, later identified as Mark David Chapman. During the next two weeks of mourning for the "thinking man's" Beatle, the last album he was working before he died, released in November, without much of a great sales, "Double Fantasy" is starting to sell very well. Also, the #1 song (moving suddenly very swiftly to the #1 spot on Billboard singles Pop charts), "(Just Like) Starting Over" is #1 that next week.

    11. As the year ends, three albums are released that will make huge waves early on in the next calendar year, 1981; "Autoamerican" by Blondie, "Moving Pictures" by Rush and "Hi Infidelity" by REO Speedwagon.

    12. Also in the last few weeks of 1980, a little known bit of news is starting to make some bit of noise, and that's what maybe going on in two Central American countries that would later help define events of this new decade (for good and ill), El Salvador and Nicaragua. (But as yet, these two Central American countries and their battles over civil rights and whether they will be Socialist nations or Democracies is not making big enough waves with most average Americans).

    --There you have the events that defined the first year of the 1980's, I'll come back with events and music, and other cultures from 1981 to 1989. So be patient (I know if I continue on past this point, I will not to get to post this, because of the amount of words, but if I split this up I'll be able to continue -- things won't be so wordy in the next post, I promise.) I may not get back to this until early tomorrow morning (or I might only get to 1981 and 1982, maybe 1983, this evening, so please hold off posting until then, thank you.)
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2005
  2. cnbpjb

    cnbpjb Senior Member

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    Jun 11, 2005
    Re: What was the 1980's in music (+all culture, politics, society)

    To 1982.



    Jan. 20, 1981 Reagan inaugurated 40th President, Iran releases 52 American hostages.

    March 30, 1981 Reagan, Press Secretary James Brady & 2 security officers shot outside Washington Hilton by John W. Hinckley, Jr., victims though do survive.

    April 12 - 14, 1981 Columbia, 1st space shuttle lift off; orbits Earth w/ astronauts John W. Young & Robert L. Crippen.

    May 13, 1981 Pope John Paul II survives attempted assassination.

    June 12 - near end season 1981 Major League Baseball players strike cancels most of season.

    June 1981 "I WANT MY MTV!" MTV first all day, all music video cable channel! 1st video aired "Video Killed The Radio Star", Buggles.

    July 29, 1981 World watches on TV wedding of Britain's Prince Charles to Princess Diana.

    Summer 1981 Inflation woes plagued 1970's, end, many resources note that U.S. seems headed into major recession.

    Aug. 3, 1981 Major strike by federal air traffic controllers begins; Dec: ends w/ Reagan nearly breaking union (by lifting ban on hiring new air traffic controllers).

    Sept. 25, 1981 Sandra Day O'Connor, 1st woman Supreme Court Justice.

    Oct. 6, 1981 Egyptian Pres. & PM Anwar el-Sadat assassinated; Cairo suburb.


    Religious right gets ABC to cancel "Soap", badly written 4th & final season didn't help for once great comedy.

    "Cagney & Lacey" huge hit w/ women & "Lou Grant" continues to do well (this show will bow out though, spring 1982, CBS thinks too liberal for 1980's).

    New: "Hill Street Blues", "Knight Rider", "Fame", "Gimme A Break" (w/ new to U.S. households, Broadway singer, Nell Carter), "The A-Team" & "Knot's Landing" ("Dallas" spinoff).


    "Cats", entrenched show (it will survive into 1990's) & music becomes well known & covered by many singers.

    "Amadeus" (re: composer, Mozart), new hit this year.


    "Raiders Of The Lost Ark" w/ Harrison Ford!

    "Superman II" w/ Christopher Reeves.

    3 movies fall releasedl: "Endless Love", "Arthur" & "For Your Eyes Only" w/ successful hit singles (Diana Ross & Lionel Richie for 1st, Christopher Cross for 2nd & new Scottish imported singer, Sheena Easton for 3rd).

    Late in year, "On Golden Pond" released, will be last movie made by Henry Fonda.


    Punk & heavy metal seems run out of steam, but are being played on underground level.

    Year "For Those About To Rock" AC/DC & "Face Value" Phil Collins first solo effort (will return to Genesis late in year, "Abacab"), On charts: Commodores, "Lady, You Bring Me Up", Bill Withers w/Grover Washington, Jr., "Just the Two of Us", REO Speedwagon's "Hi Infidelity" w/ "Keep On Loving You", "In Your Letter", "Don't Let Him Go"), Moody Blues lp "The Voice" w/ "Gemini Dream", summer belongs to Kim Carnes & "Bette Davis' Eyes", Blondie's "Autoamerican" w/ "The Tide Is High" & "Rapture". Kool & the Gang w/ "Celebration" (winter), "GregRockKihnRollBand" w/ "The Breakup Song (They Don't Write 'Em)"; Easton w/ 1st #1, "Morning Train (Nine To Five)", country singer, turned pop, Juice Newton, "Angel Of the Morning" & "Queen Of Hearts", jazz legends, George Benson's "Turn Your Love Around" & Manhattan Transfer's remake, "Boy From New York City" go pop. Summer, actor-singer, Rick Springfield (while playing Dr. Noah Drake, ABC's daytime drama, "General Hospital") releases lp, "Working Class Dog" w/ #1, "Jesse's Girl" & shows some inclination soaps might not be bad, for pop music. Fall new lps by solo Stevie Nicks (formerly, Fleetwood Mac), "Belladonna", Journey "Escape", Cars "Shake It Up", Rolling Stones "Tattoo You", Foreigner "4", Hall & Oates "Private Eyes" & Olivia Newton-John "Physical" set tone rest of year & 1982. Near year's end 1 particular new group noticed by many (1st time all female group up for Grammy new artist) & group is the Go-Go's w/ lp sells quite well: "Beauty & the Beat".

    September, Simon & Garfunkel get together for huge concert; New York's Central Park, airs on cable channel, HBO.



    Recession continues. Job loss, unemployment huge. Farms failing. Stock market nearly bad as 1930's depression.

    Spring: During economic downturn miniskirts comeback.

    Jan. 13, 1982 Air Florida jetliner crashes, icy Potomac river killing 78 people.

    Falkland War, Britian & Argentina, major news.

    Over 10 year Equal Rights Amendment (E.R.A.) struggle, unceremonious end when Florida legislature, lack of 2 votes does not approve it.

    Nov. 2, 1982 W/ recession, homelessness & farm foreclosures major issues, Democrats make 26 seat gain, U.S. House & take many major Governorships (only losing California, Illinois, & Texas). Republicans keep majority of 54 - 46 in U.S. Senate.

    Dec. 2, 1982 First successful heart transplant.


    "Mork & Mindy" ends. Although we'd not see last of, Robin Williams.

    Cindy Williams departs "Laverne & Shirley", after she becomes pregnant & she doesn't appreciate show's writer's & producer Gerry Marshall want her to do, physically. Show struggles & carry on, but seen as, "Laverne (Shirleyless)"

    Big year "Quincy, M.E." in ratings, for 1st time.

    New, "Remington Steele", "St. Elsewhere", "Scarecrow & Mrs. King", "Gloria" (spin off of "All In The Family"; okay for CBS in ratings, CBS seems not to want to stick w/ it), "Family Ties", "Square Pegs" (shows what kind new things were going on w/ many young people & airs "Valley" talk & highlights artists such Waitresses & B-52's) & lest I forget, "Cheers" (isn't huge Nielsen hit during 1st season {won't be 3rd season} w/ minor hit for singer, Gary Portnoy -- theme song, "Where Everybody Knows Your Name")


    Major hit show, many think somewhat biographical for Motown group Supremes: "The Dream Girls", w/ minor hit , via lead singer, Jennifer Holiday w/, "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going".


    Early in year hit, "Chariots Of Fire", "Rocky III" big in summer 1982 (w/ #1 for group called Survivor w/ "Eye Of The Tiger"); follow up 1st tepid, "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" widely acclaimed, "Star Trek: The Wrath Of Khan" (picking storyline from 1960's original TV series, helps boost ticket sales & helps revive interest in "Star Trek" universe & science fiction), but year belongs to Steven Spielberg's "E.T.: The Extra-Terrestial" ("E.T. phone home.")

    Fall: "An Officer And A Gentleman" released w/ great reviews, does well w/ women & men. Movie has wonderful #1 song for Joe Cocker (duet w/ Jennifer Warnes), "Up Where We Belong".

    Late in year, Dustin Hoffman's movie, "Tootsie"; & epic "Gandhi" released w/ much acclaim & huge audiences.


    Early in year big hits:

    "Centerfold", J. Geils Band, "I Love Rock 'n Roll", Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, "We Got The Beat", Go-Go's & "Ebony & Ivory", Paul McCartney & Stevie Wonder.

    Rest of year, two new artist have success: One British supergoup Asia w/ self titled debut (w/ "Heat Of The Moment") & Canadian John Mellencamp (going by last name he didn't want: Cougar) w/ lp, "American Fool" w/ "Hurts So Good" & "Jack & Diane".

    Fleetwood Mac w/ "Mirage" lp w/ "Hold On" & "Gypsy".

    Fall: Billy Joel, Don Henley, Bruce Springsteen release much anticipated lp's, for Joel, "The Nylon Curtain" (salute Vietnam War vets & another song Billy Joel goes off about economy being in pits especially factory workers, "Allentown"), for Henley (now solo flying Eagle), "Building The Perfect Beast" (w/ hit, "Dirty Laundry" indicting TV news media); & for Springsteen, "Nebraska" (doesn't sell as well as, "The River" & no hits from album).

    Fall: Three songs revive careers of America ("You Can Do Magic"), Steve Miller ("Abracadbra") & Chicago ("Hard To Say I'm Sorry"). Near end of year Marvin Gaye releases hit, "Sexual Healing" (unfortunately, not yet known, will be Gaye's Billboard chart hit). Former Genesis' members, Phil Collins & Peter Gabriel release 2 mildly successful lp's, "Hello, I Must Be Going" & "Peter Gabriel 4".

    Summer: New keyboard Brit synth group ushers onto American soil bunch of other new Brit & Aussie groups, & many Americans would wonder if New Wave everyone been talking about coming over for # of years would mean we were facing new British mini-invasion (not unlike original '60's Brit invasion led by Beatles); this new group, the Human League w/ lp, "Dare" & #1 song, "Don't You Want Me". Following Human League would be groups as Australia's Men At Work w/ "Who Can It Be Now?" & "Down Under", Soft Cell w/ "Tainted Love", Kim Wilde w/ "Kids In America" & Split Enz w/ "I Got You", etc. Of course one of 2 big names was about to come, & that is Duran Duran ("Girls On Film", "Rio" & in 1983, "Hungry Like The Wolf"; other big name of Brit. mini-invasion, make it big not until 1983). Many new mini-invasion groups very comfortable & actually very creative w/ new medium to sell music, music videos & many of these only starting to become mini-movies & present storylines about the songs. 1 new American group does okay, Huey Lewis & the News' "Picture This" w/ "Do You Believe In Love?" Fall: 2 U.S. women artist would have huge success in attempt to be "New Wave", Laura Branigan w/ "Gloria" & Toni Basil w/ "Mickey". Last few weeks December an lp would released w/ much importance for rest of decade, Michael Jackson's "Thriller".
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2005
  3. cnbpjb

    cnbpjb Senior Member

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    Re: What was the 1980's in music (+all culture, politics, society)



    U.S. Recesssion subsiding?

    Latin American country, El Salvador becomes major issue, U.S. politics.

    Start up 1984 Presidential elections.

    April 18, 1983 Truck packed w/ explosives blows up U.S. Embassy in Beirut, killing 63 people.

    South African violence against Apartheid starts heating. Many people in U.S. start to demand from their government & businesses, divest from business in that country.

    June 18, 1983 Sally K. Ride 1st U.S. woman astronaut, in space, on space shuttle, Challenger.

    Aug. 29, 1983 1st U.S. military men killed in violence in Beirut, 2 U.S. marines.

    Summer 1983 Ma Bell, forced to break up her phone company.

    Sept. 1, 1983 Soviet warplane shoots down South Korean airliner, kills all 269 people; U.S.S.R. claimed plane was in Russian territory.

    Oct. 13, 1983 Reagan decides to launch attack on island of Grenada (you say, where?; you weren't alone.)

    Oct. 23, 1983 Suicide bombers launch more attacks in Beirut, killing up to 241 Americans.

    Nov. 20, 1983 ABC television airs made for TV movie, "The Day After", about nuclear war, draws about 100 million viewers.

    Violence continues in Beirut.


    On Feb. 28, 1983, "M*A*S*H" comes to end w/ 3 hour much watched finale. Also coming to end, w/ much less hype, are "Archie Bunker's Place", "Gloria", "Square Pegs", "Quincy, M.E." & "Laverne & Shirley" & "Hart To Hart". Spring new: "Hotel" (ABC) & "Riptide" (spin off of "The A-Team", NBC). Fall very little new to replace them that become big (although CBS has minor hit w/ nighttime soap, "Falcon Crest" & ABC has minor hit w/ another nighttime soap, "Dynasty" -- at least at time.) NBC's "The Facts Of Life" & "Family Ties" (makes actor Michael J. Fox a star) improving in ratings, gradually. First Lady Nancy Reagan spring appearance on NBC's "Diff'rent Strokes" preaching people must, "Say No To Drugs"! (What you talking about Nancy?)

    3 spring miniseries do very well (last of 3, surprisingly): 1 & 2 expected hits: ABC's "The Winds Of War" & "The Thorn Birds" (w/ controversial idea of Richard Chamberlain's priest tempted to marry), & finally 3rd one is sci-fi, loosely based on NAZI's takeover of Europe, although in miniseries, aliens from another world, disguised as humans (actually lizards) try to take over Earth by taking water & harvesting humans for food. Name of last chilling miniseries, "V" on NBC.


    Big movies 1983 are in spring, "Mr. Mom" & in summer, "National Lampoon's Vacation", "Risky Business" (starring young, in his underwear, Tom Cruise lip sincing Bob Seger's hit, "Old Time Rock 'n Roll"), "The Right Stuff" & lest I forget last for then of "Star Wars" saga, "Return Of the Jedi" (everyone learns surprising revelations that Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker's father & that Luke & Princess Leia are twins.) :p
    Fall 1983 two hits released: "Terms Of Endearment" & "The Big Chill".

    Another summer minor hit movie summer is, "Flashdance" w/ very sexy Jennifer Beals dancing w/ songs, while working in factory. "Flashdance"'s soundtrack two #1's, Irene Cara, "Flashdance ... What A Feeling" & Michael Sembello, "Maniac" by Michael Sembello. Beals starts new fashion trend.


    Year of "Le Cage aux Folles", French transplant & racy one at that.


    February 4, 1983, pop singer, Karen Carpenter dies of anorexia -- had long been rumored.

    Year belongs decisively to Michael Jackson's "Thriller". This event in music is not to be underestimated. At time, MTV wasn't showing any videos from African-American artists. & Epic's business end forces MTV to accept airing Jackson's video to 1st major hit from lp, "Billie Jean". Would be learned as year went along this lp had guest such as Paul McCartney ("The Girl Is Mine"), Eddie Van Halen ("Beat It") & Vincent Price (the title track) to help bolster sales & acceptance to larger audience. Videos were all exceptional & along w/ country tinged, "Wanna Be Startin' Something", MJ is, as we would later learn at top of his game. Of course looking back on history, song from lp, "Pretty Young Things" take on whole new meaning. :p

    Jackson's acceptance help bolster another African-American artist, Prince (Rogers Nelson) & his lp, "1999" (w/ title track, "Little Red Corvette" & "Delirious") becames huge hits & puts Prince on map. Also African-American, Jeffrey Osbourne & group, Debarge have minor hits, "On The Wings Of Love" & "Time Will Reveal".

    Older artist making dents in charts, were Toto w/ "Toto IV" (which had actually released, summer 1982 w/ "Rosanna" & "Africa"), Greg Kihn Band w/ "Kihnspiracy" ("Jeopardy"), Journey w/ "Frontiers" ("Seperate Ways {Worlds Apart"} & "Faithfully"), David Bowie w/ hit lp, "Let's Dance" had title track #1, Stevie Ray Vaughn w/ "Texas Flood", ZZ Top w/ "Eliminator"
    ("Sharp Dressed Man" & "Legs"), Kenny Rogers & "Eyes That See in the Dark" (& #1 duet w/ Dolly Parton, "Islands In The Stream"), Lionel Richie & "Can't Slow Down (w/ #1, "All Night Long {All Night}", reformed again Genesis w/ "Genesis" ("That's All"), Linda Ronstadt w/ lp she dueted w/ big band leader, Nelson Riddle's band, "What's New?", Tina Turner w/ lp, entitled "Private Dancer" (would sell big in 1984) & return of disco diva, Donna Summer, w/ something lot less disco, "She Works Hard For the Money" & lest I forget, the Police w/ "Synchronicity" w/ summer #1 -- 8 weeks, "Every Breath You Take".

    On comeback trail, Welch singer who had some success late 1970's being compared as male Rod Stewart, Bonnie Tyler. Her lp, "Faster Than The Speed Of Night" produced by master wizard producer, Jim Steinman #1 in fall, "Total Eclipse Of The Heart".

    British mini-invasion, started summer 1982, continued w/ Duran Duran ("Is There Something I Should Know" & "Union Of The Snake") & Human League ("(Keep Feeling) Fascination") w/ more hits. Joining them, such acts as Musical Youth ("Pass The Dutchie"), UB40 ("Red, Red Wine" -- released again later in decade), Eddy Grant ("Electric Avenue"), Madness ("Our House"), Jo Boxers ("Just Got Lucky"), Naked Eyes ("Promises, Promises" & "Always Something There To Remind Me"), Spandau Ballet ("True") & etc. Not to be overlooked were success of two cross dressing lead singer acts: Culture Club (had boy that looked like girl lead singer named, Boy George), released hits, "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me?", "Time (Clock Of The Heart)", "I'll Tumble 4 Ya" & "Church Of The Poisoned Mind" & at end of year, #1 (in early '84) "Karma Chameleon" & other act was duo Annie Lenox (who looked like a man to many) & David Stewart, w/ summer #1, "Sweet Dreams (are Made Of This)". Again all these acts had one thing in common, great appearance on music videos. Longtime 60's group, the Kinks got into mini-invasion w/, "Come Dancing" & joining was punk rock survivalist, Clash w/ "Rock The Casbah" (released, late 1982) & "Should I Stay Or Should I Go?" At year end, return of progressive rock act, Yes, to charts w/ lp, "90215" & #1 (again early '84), "The Owner Of A Lonely Heart".

    Canadians also had good year w/ new acts, including Bryan Adams, Saga, Men Without Hats & return of Rush w/ lp called "Signals" (actually released, fall '82). Also German import in fall, Peter Schilling w/ update of David Bowie tune, "Major Tom (Coming Home)".

    Americans weren't to be denied, led already by such acts as Talking Heads ("Burning Down The House") & more recent hit makers, Huey Lewis & the News ("Heart & Soul"), Motels (in '82 w/ "Only The Lonely" & in '83 w/ "Suddenly Last Summer") & Stray Cats ("Stray Cat Strut", "Rock This Town" & "Sexy + 17"); newer American acts included, the Romantics ("Talking In Your Sleep"), Berlin (w/ very suggestive song title, "Sex {I'm A}"), Moving Pictures ("Destination Unknown"), amongst others. Two new American heavy metal groups revive that genre that would grow in '84, in spring: Def Leppard releases lp, "Pyromania" (w/ hit "Photograph") & in late fall: Quiet Riot releases "Metal Health" (w/ #5, "Cum On Feel The Noize".)

    All in all 1983 may have been most diversive year in music, since 1960's.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2005
  4. cnbpjb

    cnbpjb Senior Member

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    Re: What was the 1980's in music (+all culture, politics, society)



    Lebanon & Syria continue Reagan administration headaches.

    Jan. 7 - 17, 1984 Chinese Premier Ziyang 1st China leader visit U.S.

    Jan. 10, 1984 U.S. & Vatican establish full diplomatic ties 1st time, since 1867.

    Jan. 11, 1984 U.S. Army helicopter pilot killed in Honduras by hostile fire.

    Jan. 29, 1984 Reagan announces bid for reelection.

    Feb. 7, 1984 Challenger astronauts Bruce McCandless & Robert L. Stewart become 1st human beings fly free in space w/out lifeline to their spacecraft.

    Feb. 8 - 19, 1984 Winter Olympics held, Sarajevo, Yugoslavia. Major stars: Katarina Witt, E. Germany; Scott Hamilton, U.S.A.; Torvill & Dean, G. Britain & Mahre brothers, U.S.A.

    Feb. 9, 1984 Soviet leader Yuri Andropov dies.

    Feb. 13, 1984 Konstantin Chernenko succeeds Andropov.

    Feb. - May 1984 Despite former Minnesota U.S. Sen. & former VP Walter F. Mondale's so-called front runner status for Democratic nom., he can't seem to shake competition from Colorado U.S. Sen. Gary W. Hart & Rev. Jesse Jackson.

    Feb. 28, 1984 Supreme Court rules federal gov. can bar sex discrimination by schools only in programs that receive fed. funds, not in school programs as whole.

    South Africa keeps providing U.S. administration & businesses w/headaches.

    Mar. 5, 1984 Lebanon cancels 1983 troop pull out agreement w/ Israel.

    Mar. 5, 1984 Supreme Court rules city's display of Nativity scene does not violate constitutional seperation, church & state.

    Mar. 6, 1984 U.S. conducts 1st flight test of cruise missile over Canada.

    Mar. 20, 1984 Despite GOP control, U.S. Sen. fails to pass proposed constitutional amendment to allow organized, spoken prayer in public schools.
    This is 1st of many issues that show GOP is not as overly conservative reactionary as Reagan campaign would lead people to believe.

    Mar. 25, 1984 First El Salvador presidential elections since 1977, runoff is required.

    April 11, 1984 Challenger astronauts complete history's 1st satellite repair in space.

    April 13, 1984 Reagan by passes Congress, send $32 million in emergency military aid to El Salvador.

    April 15, 1984 10 people shot to death in 2-family home in New York City, one of worst mass murders in city's history.

    April 17, 1984 London police blockade Libyan embassy when someone shoots into crowd of demostrators killing policewoman.

    April 18, 1984 U.S. Army helicopter w/ 2 U.S. Sens. aboard, shot at in Honduras, near Salvadoran border.

    April 25, 1984 Late U.S. Sen. Robert F. Kennedy's son, David A. Kennedy (28 years old) dies of drug overdose.

    April 26 - May 2, 1984 Ronald & Nancy become 1st President & First Lady to visit China since Nixons.

    May 2, 1984 Pope John Paul II visits Alaska.

    May 8, 1984 U.S.S.R. withdraws from L.A. '84 Summer Olympics. This is seen as tit for tat for U.S. led boycott of '80 games in Moscow. Other communist countries, that might have won many medals that also boycott: Cuba, North Korea, Poland, Bulgaria, E. Germany, Czechoslovakia, Vietnam & Hungary (5 other countries do not attend). Only 3 Communist countries that attend are: China, Romania & Yugoslavia.

    Canadian soldier opens fire w/ submachine gun in Quebec's National Assembly, killing 3.

    May 10, 1984 World Court orders U.S. to stop military action aiding Nicaraguan rebels. Reagan will not.

    May 17 - 28, 1984 In India, Hindus & Muslims riot causing 225 deaths.

    May 22, 1984 Supreme Court rules, federal antidiscrimination laws apply to partnership decisions in law firms.

    June 5, 1984 Although Mondale finally wins Democratic nomination, seemed as uphill battle for him to win fall election.

    June 10, 1984 U.S. missile, in test, shoots down an incoming missile for 1st time.

    June 12, 1984 Iran & Iraq agree to cease fire.

    Supreme Court rules courts not order employers lay off white workers to protect jobs for minorities w/ less seniority.

    June 14, 1984 MX missile survives by 1 vote, in Senate, George H. W. Bush's.

    June 27, 1984 After meeting w/Jesse Jackson, Fidel Castro agrees to release 22 American prisoners, most of them held on drug charges.

    June 28, 1984 Israel & Syria agree, release prisoners of war.

    July 12, 1984 Mondale makes historic announcement for VPl running mate, U.S. Rep. Geraldine Anne Ferraro of New York.

    July 16 - 19, 1984 Democratic Convention Mondale/Ferraro are nominated for President/Vice-President. But convention, in San Francisco, isn't percieved well by majority of Americans. Most Americans perceive it as "too liberal" & there was some major disagreements on issues on floor of convention. (Although is found in polls throughout fall that an overwhelming majority of voters support issues as stated in Democratic platform that was adopted & will strongly disagree w/ Republican platform adopted in August.) Mondale/Ferraro don't get much of "bounce" out of convention only having 48%-47% lead over Reagan/Bush.

    July 18, 1984 James Oliver Huberty shoots & kills 21 people at McDonald's restaurant just outside of San Diego.

    July 23, 1984 Israel's national election is seen as wash, w/ no party really gaining much of majority.

    On same date, 1st black Miss America, Vanessa Williams, is surprised to find nude photos of her, taken earlier, are printed in Penthouse.

    July 25, 1984 Soviet cosmonaut, Svetlana Savitskaya becomes 1st woman to walk in space.

    July 28 - Aug. 12, 1984 Summer Olympics are held. W/out Communist nations that boycotted it's obviously predictable outcome. U.S. wins most medals (a record): 83 gold, 61 silver & 30 bronze. Resulting jingoism that comes out of outcome bleeds into use by Reagan reelection campaign. Stars include: Mary Lou Retton, U.S. (who becomes 1st U.S. woman to win gold medal in Olympic all around gymnastics competition), Carl Lewis, U.S., many U.S. swimmers, track & field athletes, Joan Benoit, U.S. (1st woman to win first gold in 1st ever running of woman's marathon), Li Ning, China (1st gymnast to win Gold from his country -- he actually wins 3), & Zola Budd, representing Britain (who is actually from prevented from participating, South Africa) for rather unfortunate incident when she collides w/ presumptive favorite in 3000 meters track competition, Mary Decker, U.S. which leads to woman from Romania winning gold.

    Aug. 1, 1984 Britain & China reach agreement; hand over control of Hong Kong to Chinese in 1997.

    Aug. 11, 1984 Reagan during microphone check for radio program jokes about outlawing & bombing Russia. But Reagan's reelection chances aren't percieved as damaged.

    late Aug. 1984 Ferraro's husband, John A. Zacarro comes under media scrutiny for descrepiencies in his financial records. (There also unconfirmed suspicions of Zacarro's ties to mob.) Although Ferraro conducts news conference that seems to go well, these problems w/ Zacarro will continue to plague Ferraro long after Nov. 1984. Ferraro's political career is seen as permanently damaged after this.

    Aug. 20 - 23, 1984 GOP meets in Dallas to coronate (er, I mean) nominate Reagan/Bush for President/Vice-President. "It's morning in America!"

    Sept. 4, 1984 In preview of Nov. U.S. elections, Canada's Progressive Conservative Party, led by P.M. Brian Mulroney wins in landslide.

    Sept. 9 - 21, 1984 Pope John Paul II visits Canada.

    Sept. 20, 1984 Van packed w/ explosives blows up U.S. Embassy in Aukar, Lebanon, killing 14 people.

    Sept. 24, 1984 Reagan announces at U.N. General Assembly; proposed new arms control talks w/ U.S.S.R.

    Sept. 26, 1984 Congress approves bill for stiffer warnings on cigarette packages, Reagan signs bill on Oct. 13.

    Oct. 2, 1984 3 Soviet cosmonauts return after record 237 days in space.

    Oct. 5, 1984 Challenger lifts off w/ record seven crew members aboard.

    Oct. 7, 1984 Reagan & Mondale debate, Louisville. People unnerved when an elderly Reagan seems to drift in his comments on issues.

    Oct. 11, 1984 Bush & Ferraro debate, Philadelphia.

    Oct. 12, 1984 Reagan signs most comprehensive changes in federal criminal law.

    Bomb planted, by Irish Republican Army, in hotel that Brit. P.M. Thatcher is staying, explodes killing 5 & injuring 33. Thatcher is unhurt.

    Oct. 21, 1984 Mondale & Reagan debate in Kansas City. Reagan is seen as victor & reassures people about his age, when he responds to question that he won't mention his opponents youth.

    Oct. 31, 1984 Longtime India P.M. Indira Gandi is assassinated by 2 of her own bodyguards.

    Nov. 4, 1984 Despite Reagan's administration attempt to prevent it, Nicaragua's ruling Sandinistas win elections for president, vice president & national assembly.

    Nov. 6, 1984 Reagan wins landslide. Popular vote is 54% to 46%, while electoral margin lopsided as Reagan wins 49 states. Mondale only wins native Minnesota & District of Columbia. Appears to be popular mandate for Reagan, because his coattails aren't that long. Democrats hold U.S. House, but drop 14 seats. GOP holds U.S. Senate, but drops one to 53 - 47 (the one seat to change hands is in Tennessee, where retiring Sen. Howard A. Baker is replaced by future Dem. V.P. & Pres. candidate U.S. Rep. Albert A. Gore, Jr.)

    Nov. - Dec. 1984 Westerners become increasingly concerned about pictures coming out of Ethopia about on-going famine there.

    Nov. 26, 1984 U.S. & Iraq announce will resume diplomatic ties for 1st time since 1967.

    Dec. 3, 1984 U.S. firm Union Carbide gets a blackeye when it's pesticide factory in Bhopal, India springs a poison-gas leak killing 2500 people, in the worst industrial accident in history.
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2005
  5. cnbpjb

    cnbpjb Senior Member

    Likes Received:
    Jun 11, 2005
    Re: What was the 1980's in music (+all culture, politics, society)

    1984 News continued:

    Dec. 9, 1984 Iranian troops storm a hijacked Kuwaiti jet in Tehera, Iran, capturing 4 Arab hijackers who seized plane on Dec. 4 & killed 2 American passengers.

    Dec. 10, 1984 Astronomers announce the 1st sighting of planet outside of our solar system.

    Dec. 27, 1984 First arificial comet, cloud of barium gas, is released in space by American, Brit & W. German scientists.


    Four shows, that reached back into the 1970's, come to an end this year: "The Love Boat", "Happy Days", "AfterMASH" (a failed attempt to bring to the air, what happened after the events in the Korean War, to television), and "Three's Company" (ABC attempts in a fall revised version of this show w/ just John Ritter staying on, but "Three's A Crowd" fails miserably).

    Four shows that will have impact much impact for the rest of the 1980's began this year (two of which will continue into the 1990's): "Murder, She Wrote", "Miami Vice", "The Cosby Show" & "Who's The Boss?"

    The mini-series is noticed as dying this year, with very few new ones. And only one tha becomes a huge rating success and that is the follow up to the surprise hit, "V", from last year: "V: The Final Battle", in May. NBC attempts a regular series for "V" in the fall, on Fridays, but it fails miserable because the writing and the special effects don't match the miniseries ability.

    TV movies become very serious as TV movies become staples of presenting very strong social issues, to wit we have: On ABC: "Something About Amelia" (starring Ted Danson of "Cheers") about incest. On CBS: "Silence of the Heart" about teen-age suicide. And on NBC: "The Burning Bed" based on true story of woman who torched bed in which her abusive husband was sleeping, killing him (this stars, former "Charlie's Angel", Farrah Fawcett, in a very different role for her), and finally, "Fatal Vision" based on a book about Green Beret Capt. Jeffrey MacDonald, who was convicted of killing his wife & 2 children.


    This is the year of new musical by Stephen Sondheim, "Sunday in the Park with George". This new Sondheim musical centered on the life of French impressionist painter, Georges Seurat stars a revitalized career of actress-singer, Bernadette Peters, & and an upcoming actor-singer-dancer, Mandy Patankin (as Seurat) who will become a huge success well into the next century.


    After several years, 1979 - 1983, of horrible ticket sales movies make a huge comback with some with great soundtracks:

    "Places In the Heart" (starring Sally Field), "Country" (starring Jessica Lange), "The River" (starring Sissy Spacek & Mel Gibson), "Footloose" (starring Kevin Bacon; w/ the soundtrack doing quite well, & it includes the #1 hit title track hit from Kenny Loggins), "Against All Odds" (which had the #1 hit on it's soundtrack by Phil Collins), "Going To Rio", "A Soldier's Story", "Under The Volcano", "The Natural", "A Passage To India", in the summer there was "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" (that again stars Harrison Ford in the sequel to 1981's hit, "Raiders Of The Lost Ark"), "Ghostbusters" (starring many "Saturday Night Live" alumni & the hit soundtrack has another #1 of the titletrack by Ray Parker, Jr.), "Gremlins", "Splash" & a biopic of singer Prince, "Purple Rain" (the soundtrack yield 4 big hits, the title track, the #1's "When Doves Cry" & "Let's Get Crazy" & "I Would Die 4 You"). Finally in the winter of 1984 there were five other soon to be released hits in 1985 (two that would be featured at the Academy Awards): "Amadeus" (based on the Broadway play about Mozart), "The Killing Fields" (culled from a novel about the exploits of a journalist covering the aftermath of the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia that took control after the Vietnam War; this movie features John Lennon's "Imagine"), "Dune" (a sci-fi movie based on a series of best selling novels about the future), "2010" (a follow up to Stanley Kubrick's classic from 1968, "2001: A Space Odyssey") & "Beverly Hills Cop".

    --I will return w/ 1984's year in music this afternoon, so again patience. :eek:
  6. Magic

    Magic Woman of the World

    Likes Received:
    Apr 20, 2009
    Ohio, USA
    Re: What was the 1980's in music (+all culture, politics, society)


    This thread is chock full of information about the 1980's. Well written.

    The 80's seen a huge formation of new bands and the ending of some oldies.

    The 80's marked some HUGE changes for the music industry: the formation of Compact Dics and MTV. Music became more accessible to the public and easier to keep and store. Digital recording has forever changed the industry. Music videos has become one of the most popular marketing tools a musician can have.

    Music itself took some big changes as new wave, new country, alternative rock, rap, and heavy metal began to bloom. Glam metal became a huge genre, and the "rock ballad" became the most listened to songs.

    Television and Film makers, including TV commercials began to use music as a marketing tool. The "jingle" became less popular. Music Videos became the rage, with MTV spotlighting videos 24/7.

    What changes did you notice in the 1980's? What were you sad to see end in the 1980's?
  7. FoxyPage

    FoxyPage Guest

    I didn't get a chance to read everyone's posts so I am sorry if it has been mentioned already but I think it was in Halifax where there was a shooting at a busy McDonald's. My mom was scared to bring us to any McDonald's restaurants after that.

    Also, if no one mentioned it, that little girl, Jessica, that fell down a well.

    Worst thing about the 80's had to be the fashion and the ugly cars. I personally think the 80's had the best music, cartoons and movies ever.

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