Soundtrack Selection!!

PLAY: David Foster – Love Theme from St. Elmo’s Fire (instrumental)

“I can’t remember who met who first… or who fell in love with who first… all I can remember is the seven of us always together..”

david_foster_love_theme_from_st_elmos_fire_1985_the80smanSt. Elmo’s Fire, 1985

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PLAY: Madonna – Borderline (Immaculate Mix)

madonna_borderline_immaculate_mix_1983_the80smanA Madonna classic!

One of the great singles off Madonna’s self-titled dance debut album back in ’83 that quickly helped her win the hearts of many fans across the globe. Particularly here in the US where the music video featuring a dancing Madonna plucked from the streets to be the subject of a photo shoot, garnered heavy rotation on MTV.

This is one of the more innocent tracks of hers from the early days. Cute pop, as I say. And this particular mix comes from the famed Immaculate Collection which features a slightly different mix from the album and original single version.

It’s funny when I hear this song I can’t help but think of this great old interview where Mark Goodman asks Madonna “So you’ve got a new record coming up that you worked with Nile Rodgers (Like A Virgin) when are we going to get to hear that?” and Madonna replies “As soon as Borderline fizzles out.. (praying) please, please!” and Goodman is like “I don’t think I’ve ever heard an artist ask that their record fizzle out”. That’s Madonna for you!

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PLAY: Stevie Nicks – Stand Back

stevie_nicks_stand_back_1983_the80smanSo I have mixed feelings about the solo career of the mystical Stevie Nicks. I mean it’s alright, and she had a few good duets in there, but overall I’d lean more towards the Fleetwood Mac stuff which I think is supreme.

However, I’ll give “Stand Back” a decent plug as I think it’s the most powerful hit of her solo tenure. Released off her second solo album The Wild Heart in 1983, I’m convinced this is a Mac-track not only in spirit but in execution.. tell me that’s not Lindsey Buckingham (uncredited) yelling “stand back” toward the end.. it’s probably not, but I like to think it is :)

The downside here in no extended mix! I had the 12″ vinyl of this and there was absolutely nothing special about  it as it was the standard mix. Why on earth would you do this? I think it did play at 45rpm which is good for better sound, to a degree, but they could have put together a different mix for us people who dig that type of stuff.

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Key Album Cut Alert!!

PLAY: Peter Cetera – How Many Times

peter_cetera_how_many_times_1981_the80smanIn 1981, at a time when the band Chicago was kind of on the slide (or at least taking a brief hiatus) singer and bass player Peter Cetera would make his first attempt at chipping out a solo career with an LP release all his own.

While the resulting record gained little fanfare by comparison to the later success Peter would have as a solo artist in the 80′s and into the 90′s, it did feature some quality cuts on it that really haven’t had the exposure they deserve.

One of my favorites off this album is this track called “How Many Times”. It’s a bit of a slow rocker, and I’d even say it has an early new wave slant to it. Definitely not mainstream rock by any stretch, yet it has a quality to it that is worth exploring.

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PLAY: Def Leppard – Pour Some Sugar On Me

I had refrained from breaking this one out simply because it’s one of those “played out” songs for me. I used to play this one to death as a kid, when it was new, and today this track is like the set list staple for every hack cover band. Drives me mad really. Plus it’s a little more rock than this pop kid is into digesting these days.

def_leppard_hysteria_1987_the80smanBut I do have a childhood story with this one which is why I decided to do it. And after all, that’s a lot of what this blog is all about!

So late 80′s, my Mom’s got the Hysteria album and this track is on there which is a really big deal at the time. It was like their big-big hit, and the fact that their ever so talented drummer (now missing an arm due to an unfortunate automobile accident) was still rockin’ it out, if not even better than before, kind of gave this band “comeback” status, even though they weren’t really coming back by the general use of the term.

I had a friend in school who was a Def Leppard fan, we had that in common between us. And he had this Hysteria T-Shirt that I was totally envious of. He told me he got it somewhere in the city. Being the kid that I was, I just had to have the same shirt. I remember going with my Mom to stores in the mall, but nobody seemed to have it. I have a vague memory of saying something like “We gotta go to the city, he said he got it in the city” as if that was actually going to happen! Trek all the way to some unknown location in the city all for a T-Shirt. Delusional kid to say the least. Anyway I never got that shirt.

If my buddy wasn’t wearing the shirt, I’d tell him “Wear the Def Leppard shirt tomorrow” as if I could pretend it was mine  and live vicariously through him. And when he didn’t wear it, I was totally pissed off the rest of the day!

Funny how life changes though, I still appreciate Def Leppard, but I wouldn’t be caught dead in that shirt today :)

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PLAY: Rick James & Smokey Robinson – Ebony Eyes

One might say “Rick James and Smokey Robinson doing a duet, that’s an odd pairing?” but I don’t think that’s the case at all. While lifestyle and persona may have been drastically different, at the heart of the music, these were two great soulful singers who were perfect for an R&B ballad.

rick_james_and_smokey_robinson_ebony_eyes_1983_the80smanReleased in 1983, the duet featuring original Motown songsmith and current Motown “Super Freak” has become a bit of a lost gem. I’ve been a big fan of this track for some time, and it’s probably one of my favorites from Rick even though it isn’t nearly as funky as his more uptempo stuff. It’s got a dreamy quality to it, and it’s certainly melodically heartfelt. I think there is a perfect balance between these voices on this one.

I had this fragment of a memory in my head of this music video, all I could remember it had something to do with an airplane. Thank goodness for Youtube, I watched this video recently and practically fell over laughing at parts. It’s ultimate 80′s cheese which I think is awesome. The two singers are flying a plane named “Ebony Eyes”, they end up crashing and are stranded on an island, singing this song. Best part, a crate washing up on shore and what’s inside… not food, not first aid supplies, nope.. it’s two perfectly tailored white suits! I love it!!! :)

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Lost Gem Alert!!

PLAY: The Romantics – One In A Million (Dance Mix)

the_romantics_one_in_a_million_dance_mix_1984_the80smanThis was a great tune released by pop rock new wavers The Romantics back in that awesome of all awesome years,1984. Geeez, some 30 years ago :(

I’ve never quite understood why a cool little track like this has managed to get lost in the shuffle. Definitely a bouncy tune, in fact it sort of  has the retro flair of a 50′s bop, but with that cool 80′s pop production that makes it totally enduring for me. I only wish more people knew about it.

Fortunately these guys were wise enough to issue a 12″ for this one that included this “dance mix” which is much better overall than the standard single edit.

Tell a friend we’ve got a totally cool lost gem today at The 80′s Man.

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Laura Branigan – How Am I Supposed To Live Without You (1983)

April 7, 2014

Smooth Groove Alert!! PLAY: Laura Branigan – How Am I Supposed To Live Without You OK so… 1983, singer Laura Branigan records the now classic heartbreak ballad “How Am I Supposed To Live Without You” which was co-written by none other than, yup you guessed it, Michael Bolton. (He was doing more rock oriented stuff […]

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The Cars – Drive (1984)

April 5, 2014

PLAY: The Cars – Drive This is the biggest selling single of The Cars career, and with good reason, it’s absolutely awesome! The undisputed “ballad” off the bands critically acclaimed Heartbeat City record, “Drive” with it’s super sleek production and cruise along tone is a must in all 80′s collections. It’s more commercial rather than […]

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Power Station – Get It On (Bang A Gong) (Extended Mix) (1985)

April 4, 2014

PLAY: The Power Station – Get It On (Bang A Gong) (Extended Mix) So this is the track that set the Power Station project in motion.. As the story goes, Duran Duran members John Taylor and Andy Taylor (no relation:) wanted to develop a side project that was a little more aggressive than the type […]

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