If you hadn’t heard Sony Corporation has chucked the Walkman.
And the world emits a sorrowful cry…
Liz’s post on 13 Things She Misses From the 80’s got me thinking about a few things myself. I agreed with her on pretty much everything she listed, esp. the music and fashion items. Candy bars were only 25 cents though! Does anyone remember the Reggie bar?
Here’s my take (on a mix of ’80’s and early 90’s things that impacted me) after the jump —
Even as technology improved on the original model and we switched from cassettes to CDs, to MP3s, if you were a kid growing up in the Tri-State area who watched WPIX (locally or via cable) then we know where you were after 3pm. Playing Asteroids by shouting out the station call letters (Pix, Pix, Pix) to win a brand new Sony Walkman. Bonus points for the first reader that can name the song played during the game. If your family was on a budget like mine was, then that was more or less the only way you were going to get one aside from a birthday or holiday gift from other relatives.
Centepede, Donkey Kong, Tetris, PacMan & Ms. PacMan
Were there any others that were cooler?
Club Kids/NYC Clubs
Yes, I was one and proud of it, too! My Club Name was Faith Faithful. Don’t laugh! I already had enough grief when George Michael’s solo CD came out and title track. I remember wondering if God was going to send a lightning bolt to strike us down for kids dancing in a church (Limelight). I know now that was the twisted thinking of men, not a Higher Power in an effort at exerting control.
One of the doormen had been a member of a little band called Visage and we used to hum Fade To Grey under our breath every time we went. I’m not sure whether it annoyed him or not. The Michael Alig sponsored Disco 2000 parties were as amazing as you’ve read. This will bleed into the 90’s but I have a distinct period of my life that revolved around wearing outrageous costumes, making friends with the velvet rope gatekeepers and dancing until 4am. There were some really cool pre-rave underground clubs/club nights. Mars. The World. Save the Robots. I ignored the drinking and drugs and luckily for me the DJs hired were so darn good we could spend all night on the dancefloor surrounded by amazing beats. My favorite though was —
Elizabeth Taylor sure casts a long shadow. That’s what I thought when I researched who Mike Todd was since he had a room named after him that I spent so much time in. Well it’s an NYU dorm now but at one point it was the club in lower Manhattan. MTV even sent VJ Julie Brown there to host a show, Club MTV. Remember that?! Wubba wubba wubba. It took me years to find out who the DJ was. It was Detroit’s own Electrifying Mojo. Mojo had a radio show where he played a lot of European music including bands like —
The German pioneers have cast a long shadow of influence. Trans Europe Express. Including on a host of Detroit musicians who founded techno in the US. Juan Atkins, Carl Craig, etc. Who went on to influence other bands like Depeche Mode and so it all comes full circle. After 20+ years Kraftwerk decided to go on tour and it was freaking amazing!!! I saw them twice because the first time I was so excited it was all a blur I thought I was dreaming.
Another pioneering DJ. I never got to see him perform live but there are quite a few club mixes that bear his name. Whether they’re legit or not is another question. House music all night long.
Their debut release NEVER gets tired. Play Devotion and tell me you don’t feel closer to humanity and spiritual rebirth. Byron Stingilly’s falsetto should be a national treasure.
The John Hughes Filmography
I was going to highlight The Breakfast Club since it’s my favorite out of the bunch, but Weird Science was on basic cable recently and I found myself laughing at how silly it was. When I was younger I used to think it was too racy. Boy was I sheltered! There was a definite innocence captured that’s missing from today’s uber-jaded and oversexed culture. I really feel for kids today. Gossip Girl and threesomes should not be in their lexicon so early. I also liked Pretty In Pink (mostly for the soundtrack though).
Classic 80’s Movies
Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
The Legend Of Billie Jean
Nine to Five
Wendy’s commercial: Where’s The Beef?
New Wave, New Romantics & 80’s Pop
I once tracked down John Taylor’s high-rise Upper West Side apartment based on the mention of it in a magazine. I cross-reference new construction and pinpointed its radius by looking up the NYC planning records. This was all before computers and paparazzi stalking so my ingenuity deserves applause. Black girls rule the world you know.
Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam
I Wonder If I Take You Home
All Cried Out
They still get played to this day. Lost In Emotion…not so much hehehe.
Pre-Guiliani New York City
Yes, if you came of age during a certain period of time then you took note at the tenure of the City before he took office and after. I’m not even talking about 9/11. He ushered in the corporatist takeover that was cemented when Bloomberg became Mayor. Prior to that NYC had been “broke” but it was the coolest city in the world. People squatted apartment buildings. You could actually afford to rent an apartment in Manhattan without having to earn a six figure salary. Real artists lived in SoHo. Keith Haring was alive. CBGBs was still around. So was Tavern On the Green. NYU’s annual tuition was a mere $20K. Police masqueraded as homeless people in parks to bust you for buying drugs from drug dealers pretending to be homeless as well. That really annoyed me because I used to pass out food to actual homeless people which is how I found out all of this was going on.
Night Flight was one of the first television shows to air music videos and they tended to lean towards the newer cutting edge artists versus the sanctioned major label artists. I was going to be serious and efficient but then I remembered the Saturday morning live action show that also played music videos and had to mention it “from my radio/to my video”. Jem “glamour and glitter/fashion and fame” was the cool version of Josie & the Pussycats.
I’m going to stop because this could go on for days. What are some of your memories?