Tuesday night family tree challenge #9

Apologies for lateness! This was supposed to be here last night but I was a bit busy yesterday and forgot to schedule it.

Anyway, last week I said that I had two candidates for the challenge and ended up tossing a coin. Therefore this week the challenge concerns last week’s losing artist.

The person I am offering up this week is someone who is surely known to everyone, because he was a member of one of the world’s biggest bands. He was also a session musician who played on a huge number of 1960s hit records and albums by all kinds of people. He doesn’t really need any more introduction because he is Jimmy Page.

There shouldn’t be any shortage of people and bands to link to this week and lots of different types of music too.

Here he is with The Yardbirds performing an early version of a song that became a live classic with Led Zeppelin.

As usual, there is a YouTube playlist, which is here and which will open in a new tab.

Songwriting in the 1980s

80s

I’ve been thinking about this for a while, ever since we’ve been doing the Picks of the Years thing. What got me really started on this was the way that the 1980s divides people. For some, it is the Decade That Taste Forgot and for others it is Pop Heaven. Personally, I reckon that the 80s were like all the other decades, there was good and bad.

One thing that is very 1980s is a kind of glossy slickness, perfect production and a big, wide-screen sound, but never fear, you won’t be hearing anything from the artists in the picture above.

Of course, there are other sides to ’80s music but it is the songwriting, production and general “bigness” of the whole thing that I have been thinking about. Even the intimate and emotionally-charged songs seem to have a sense of epic scale about them. OK, so sometimes it ends up being a musical equivalent of Top Gun, but that just screams out “1980s” anyway.

So, here is a playlist that showcases the glossy sound, the production, the soulful flourishes (without being soul music) and the all-round epic qualities. All of the artists are British, some are bigger names than others, one or two are probably not as well-known as they should be but all of the tracks I’ve picked show up at least one facet of what I’ve been rambling on about.

 

‘Spillyear 1988

At the end of last week’s hugely enjoyable thread Fuel posted a link to a Guardian article that contained the line “1995 sits with 1967, 1977 and 1988 among pop culture’s true glory years”.

I’m sure the Guardian doesn’t go in for phone hacking, but I’m a little put out that I appear to have had my head hacked.

1988 it is (we’ll come to 1977) though there is some confusion about whether the “Second Summer of Love” was 1988 or 1989. Wikipedia hedges its bets:

The Second Summer of Love is a name given to the period in 1988–89 in Britain, during the rise of acid house music and the euphoric explosion of unlicensed MDMA-fuelled rave parties.The term generally refers to the summers of both 1988 and 1989 when electronic dance music and the prevalence of the drug MDMA fuelled an explosion in youth culture culminating in mass free parties and the era of the rave. LSD was also widely available and popular again. The music of this era fused dance beats with a psychedelic, 1960s flavour, and the dance culture drew parallels with the hedonism and freedom of the Summer of Love in San Francisco two decades earlier. Similarities with the Sixties included fashions such as Tie-dye. The smiley logo is synonymous with this period in the UK.

I have vague memories of repetitive beats coming from the hill a couple of miles away from our house, and smiley stickers made it as far as my primary school. But I also remember the charts: this was a time when Rick Astley was not an ironic internet meme, but a popular recording artist. Ye gods.

So, ‘Spillers: were you leaving an important part of your brain somewhere in a field in Hampshire, swallowing Stock, Aitken and Waterman, or celebrating the twilight of hair metal? Or none of the above?

Listen to the playlist here 

Add your top 3 here

 

A Case for Late 80’s Pop

Nothing new to anyone on here, just a quick and cheap post I guess to try to convince Bish that pop didn’t suck after 1984, i think it got even better. More polished – probably peaking around 1987 for the swooniest pop for my money. (A monster year overall. We have our work cut out on that one.) Then it started to sort of unpolish itself, and started to go other places by the end of the decade. Which was all good.

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URGENT! Paging the 1980s … Please contact Reception immediately

1980s

I’ve just been told that the friend I’m being Best Man for on Monday wants a glorified 1980s mixtape to play at the wedding reception when the band isn’t on. I’m going to see him over the weekend to put a CD-R together. We both have lots of 80s stuff, but we were both out-&-out metalheads back then. There’s a file in the ‘Box if anyone with DJ experience/sense wants to Drop anything more generally suitable than HM for a 25-85 year-olds (i.e. no kid, but lots of older folks) dancefloor.

Off to work; back later.

Ta.