2008-03-09

Thank goodness for the 80s!

The mid-70s were a low point for American popular music. This period marked the exit of folk and rock and roll while disco and harder rock had yet to hit their respective strides. In the vacuum between there was . . . a bunch of generic-sounding R&B and soft rock, bleh. Seriously, if I hear any more Barry Manilow I may strangle someone. And Paul McCartney, your knighthood should be stripped for besmirching your reputation as you did with Wings. The Eagles, anyone who has seen The Big Lebowski knows how I feel about them.

Don't get me wrong; there was definitely some great music being made; it just wasn't all that popular--according to Billboard, at least. This is perplexing because it's not as if America's taste took a sabbatical. Look at the Academy Award's for Best Picture during that period: The Godfather, The Sting, The Godfather II, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Rocky, Annie Hall (should have been Star Wars, of course, but Annie Hall was still a great choice) . . . not exactly a shabby line-up. Oh well, at least this period saw the rise of Queen.

Around 1978 things started picking back up. Disco really found itself and began churning out the iconic songs we still associate with it today. New rock bands began popping out of the woodwork. And hey, Grease; you can't beat that. 1979 continued the momentum and the stage was set for the fabulous music of the 80s. What could explain this resurgence of musical quality? Let's see, was there anything important that happened around this timeframe? Hmm. Oh, hey, that's right, I was born! I'm not drawing any conclusions--just throwing it out there . . .

3 comments:

Katie said...

I love the music posts...how very Patrick Batemen...

Bryan Guido Hassin said...

I know! I immediately thought of American Psycho too when I encountered Genesis's first song in 1980. Just wait until I write a chapter on Huey Lewis and the News!

Mike Cox said...

The Big Lebowski is forever tied to me learning a new technique for bowling... that of removing one's shoes and hurling them at the pins when the ball is ineffective.