Thursday, October 27, 2005

Time After Time

That's the name of one of my all-time favorite songs and one of the best songs of the 80s IMHO .. I never get tired of hearing it (check out Cyndi Lauper's reinterpreted version of her song on her new album; pretty cool). For all the grief that the 80s get for greed, bad fashion sense, ugly car designs -- all of that well-deserved criticism, BTW -- the music from that decade doesn't get enough credit. There was some great music being made then .. New Wave bands like the Cars, the Boomtown Rats, Depeche Mode and New Order all churned out incredible songs. So did the metal bands like Judas Priest, Ozzy Osbourne (before he permanently hopped onboard the Crazy Train and drank away what was left of his musical ability), Motley Crue and the lighter fare like Ratt and Bon Jovi. Hey, say what you will about their unwise fashion choices and shameless flaunting of their feminine tendencies (c'mon guys; did you really need that much hairspray?); but you can't deny alot of those bands could write good songs. Bon Jovi in particular were masters of the Pop hook. Go ahead, raise your hand if you can sing along with You Give Love A Bad Name. Don't lie, you know you know the words. I just saw them in concert recently at the Nokia Theatre in Times Square as they were out promoting their new disc. I couldn't believe how well some of their songs have aged .. I hadn't heard Raise Your Hands since like 1987, but when they played it at the concert it sounded like a brand new song.
Bottom line is, a good tune is a good tune. Doesn't matter what the person singing it is wearing or if they're wearing spandex. So if you grew up in the 80s, don't be ashamed to listen to the songs of your youth. There's a reason 80s nights are popular in clubs; its the music, stupid! So hit iTunes and start downloading those closet classics. Whether you liked dance music like Lime (Say You Love Me) or Lisa Lisa (Can You Feel The Beat .. ) -- or metal like the Crue (forget Theatre of Pain; go for Shout At The Devil. Every song on that disc will tear you up, especially Looks That Kill) and Judas Priest (You Got Another Thing Comin' is just a bad-ass song. The utter coolness of this song is probably what made Priest fans overlook all the incredibly obvious signs of lead singer Rob Halford's homosexuality. Yeah, that had to be why they couldn't believe the guy who had a Caesar cut while wearing skin-tight black leather w/chains was gay. Uh-huh. Yeah. Right.).

I do recommend though digging past just the usual Top 40 songs from the era that always get airplay. I've had my fill of "Electric Avenue" and "C'mon, Eileen," thank you very much. Listen to T'pau's "Heart & Soul" .. or "Funky Little Beat" .. or how about "Do You Want It Right Now?" Great stuff!

Ok, I'm out. On my iPod right now: "Only Lonely" by Bon Jovi.

Oh. Yeah.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Weather Woes

As I stare outside my window here in NYC, another miserably wet (and cold!) day coming to an end, I'm thinking about my mom down in Miami. Hurricane Wilma ripped South Florida apart, left nearly 2 million people without power -- some won't get it back for 4 WEEKS! Can you imagine being without electricity for that long? Think about what that means -- no TV, no refrigerated food, no microwave, no TV, no radio, no computer, no ATM [which means no food, gas or water since without electricity most stores can't use their credit card machines so its cash only], no AC, no lights ...!! This has been an unbelievable year, one that really spotlights how woefully unprepared the world's most powerful and advanced country is for a temper tantrum by Mother Nature. If Hurricane Katrina didn't prove it, Wilma certainly has.
Or .. at least it would to those few people who actually know how bad it is in South Florida. If you're watching the major cable networks, its been buried the past 2 days beneath coverage of the Nor'easter dumping a couple inches of rain and gusting winds across the Northeast. Hey, I live in Manhattan, I'm seeing it firsthand, I know we're having miserable weather. But a major American region is thisclose to an emergency crisis, while not as bad as New Orleans after Katrina, but still much worse than many think, and a lot worse than the rain we're experiencing. We all learned during Katrina how important it is for the media not to get distracted by the story of the day, when a bigger picture item is still unfolding. Unfortunately, news stations and networks are run by the ADD generation, so its become a greater challenge to keep the media's eye on the ball, so to speak. Hopefully, for my family, friends and everyone else down in South Florida, that challenge will be met.