Jan
02
2015

Pop Music Hits – Not What it Used to Be

Pop music hits over the generations has really changed immensely and no more so than in the last five years. Throughout the evolution of popular music up until the last 20 years pop music usually encompassed only one genre of music. Take into consideration Baroque, Renaissance, and Classical music. The music was by different composers but stayed well within the same type of musical category. When recorded music came onto the scene and began being broadcasted over radio waves the transmission of pop music hits became different but not it overall mandate which was that it still retained its origin in one type of music.

Think about the advent of jazz during the early part of the 20th century. Jazz was prevalent for a while as the main type of pop music. Anything you heard would have a jazz feel to it. We’re talking pop jazz here not the blues, the blues although popular amongst musicians themselves were more of an influential genre than a popular one. Then of course there was rock and roll which really dominated the pop music hit culture until the advent of Motown and R&B music.

Rock and roll and R&B dominated pop music until Disco came along and then to a small extent country music gained some popularity as a main stream genre. The 70’s was a mixed bag of rock, R&B, ballads and country music, mixed in with a little kitsch. Remember, CW McCall? Rock and R&B still dominated though showing its resilience right up until the late 1980’s when Rap came onto the scene. The mix of pop music hits began to change a bit. Rock and roll was being knocked out a bit by Rap and R&B and was no longer the dominant force in pop.

Today, pop music hits has become an amalgamation of all the music genres. You can have a country song, R&B song, and Rap songs all on one pop chart. Indeed, even radio stations have changed around their formats to be more ubiquitous and less focused on only one kind of music. The influences are all still there thanks to rock and roll but the cadence and tunes themselves have changed and transmogrified into the mix of pop music we have adopted in the last five years. Like everything pop music has progressed and expanded exponentially in the 21st century most of which has occurred just in the last five years.

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Dec
01
2014

All Time Biggest 80’s Music Hits and Why We Love Them So

The greatest decade of them all, the 80’s!! Once again, here we are at the start of another memory lane. Travel with me once more as I recall some of the biggest music hits from the big 80’s!! The hair was big, the music loud, and the hits never seem to end. Rock, pop, country, whatever the style, there is a certain favorite song for everyone. I find it amusing that the more commercials I see, the more I hear 80’s classic hit songs. Just goes to show the longevity of this great music and of this great era!

So let’s get this gig started shall we? Let’s start with favorite pop hits. Everyone from Abba’s Dancing Queen, to Whitney Houston’s How Will I Know. Madonna’s Papa don’t Preach, to New Kids on the Block’s The Right Stuff. Quirky little gems to say the least. But somehow, they have a permanent spot in my memory. I think I can even still do the N.K.O.T.B. dance!! What about the ever popular band Genesis and all the great 80’s hits they had? Land of Confusion, No Reply at All, That’s All, just to name a few. Then you can’t mention the band Genesis without saying something about the ever popular, Phil Collins. Probably his biggest 80’s hit was In The Air Tonight. Does anyone else do the air drum solo near the end of the song like I do? Please, please, please, let there be someone else that does it!! I’ve almost wrecked cars trying to get it out!! But, hey, back to the subject here. Who can remember The Police and their stream of hits? Don’t Stand so Close To Me, Every Little Thing She Does is Magic, Every Breath You Take are just a very few of 80’s hits from this great band. Not to mention Sting and his solo career. Do you remember the mega hit from Dire Straits called Money for Nothing? Guess who was singing “I want my M.T.V.” in the beginning? You guessed it, Sting. There was a few big artists who kinda sorta crossed lines if you will in the 80’s. Eddie Van Halen crossed over and played guitar for Micheal Jackson on his great hit, Beat It, and then Micheal did background vocals for Rockwell and his hit Somebody’s Watching Me. Diversity is the name of the game here, with everyone in play.

Next, let’s move over to the harder side of 80’s rock. There was plenty to be had in this arena wasn’t there? Everyone from Poison, to the thunder from down under, AC/DC. Who can’t forget the power ballads of the 80’s? I believe the biggest power ballad of all time has to be from Poison and Every Rose Has It’s Thorn. Stadium rock was alive and well with mega bands like Cinderella and their 80’s hit Save Me. Did anyone catch the Monsters of Rock concert from the 80’s? If you did, you saw mega stars like Van Halen, Scorpions, and Metallica. It seemed as though the hits that were coming out were bigger and louder than anything else everyone has ever seen. One of the biggest stage presences ever was from the band Def Leppard and their In The Round, In Your Face tour. Talk about something new!! For those not familiar with this kind of concert, the band was in the middle of the concert hall, and the crowd was seated around the band a full 360 degrees. Not that anyone was seated mind you!! This was from their mega album Hysteria. The hits go on and on.

So there you have a few of the greatest 80’s rock and pop hits. Stay tuned as there will surely be more to follow. Thanks much for sharing your time with me. Rock On!!!

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Nov
01
2014

More Great 80’s Music Hits – The Ladies of the 80’s

Here we go again! Strap on your time machine and come with me once again down 80’s music memory lane. This time let’s give it a twist, shall we? Let’s showcase just the ladies that gave us some of the biggest, best 80’s music hits. We will cover some big time names as well as some others that are not so easily recoginized. But it’s their overall collaboration of these great music hits that helped shape the decade known as the big 80’s. Let’s roll…

First on the list is Pat Benatar. How about her big music 80’s hits, Love Is a Battlefield, and Hit Me With Your Best Shot. The ever popular Laura Branigan and her smash hits Self Control, and Gloria from the great 80’s movie hit Flashdance. Tiffany also threw in some catchy hits like I Think We’re Alone Now, and I Saw Him Standing There.

Not to be out done is Debbie Gibson. Her big 80’s hits included Only In My Dreams, and Shake Your Love. Nena was also a strong presence with her song, 99 Luft Balloons. The American version was 99 Red Balloons. Did anyone catch Tiffany’s mall tour in the big 80’s? Quite a unuiqe way to get exposure, but hey, whatever it takes. Just goes to show the diversity of the artists and the fans who adored them.

Next up we have Martika and her hauntingly beautiful 80’s hit, Toy Soldiers. One of my favorites to this day. We can’t go down this hit list without throwing in the perky Toni Basil. Her great music donation was Mickey. I always did like cheer leaders!! Another all time favorite is the ever popular Go-Go’s. We Got the Beat, Vacation, and Our Lips Are Sealed. 80’s hits and classics all rolled up in one. The lead singer from the Go-Go’s was, as we all know, Belinda Carlisle. Her solo career gave us hits like Heaven Is a Place on Earth, and Circles In the Sand. The Bangles and their great 80’s music video Walk Like an Egyptian is still a staple on the classic video stations.

Susanna Hoffs and her crazy eyes is something that I will always remember. Too cool. Speaking of great music video hits, Tina Turner was a powerful female artist as well, picking up a good head of steam in the 80’s. Her hits include What’s Love Got To Do With It, and Better Be Good To Me. Timeless treasures still alive today. Terry Nunn fronted a band called Berlin. Who can ever forget their huge 80’s hit Take My Breath Away. From possibly the best movie of all time Top Gun. Maybe I’m a little biased here!! Brass In Pocket and Middle Of the Road came from the super group The Pretenders. Did you know that Brass In Pocket is not the bands favorite song to perform? But certianly it is their most requested. Chrissy Hynde was made to sing this one!! Hard rockin’ glam metal Scandal had the big 80’s hit The Warrior.

I can still see Patti Smythe and Roxi crankin’ it up loud to this day. A little band from the Seattle area known as Heart had some giant classic music hits in the 80’s as well. These Dreams, and If Looks Could Kill are just a few from this mega band. The all girl band Vixen headlined with big artists due in part to their 80’s hit Livin’ On The Edge Of a Broken Heart. Not to be left behind, Lita Ford paired up with Ozzy Osbourne for the duet, Close My Eyes Forever. Her solo hit Kiss Me Deadly was not too far behind. Another rocker we have to include is Joan Jett. I Love Rock N Roll and Do You Want To Touch Me are by far classic hits that survive to this day. To wind up the list, we have to say something about Cher. If I Could Turn Back Time was a favorite of me and my fellow shipmates when I was in the United States Navy for obvious reasons. Man I wish I was on that battle ship!!

Now for a little 80’s music hits trivia. Does anyone know the co-lead singer with Meatloaf on his giant hit Paradise By The Dashboard Lights? The woman you see is named Karla Devito. But did you know she was actually lip-syncing? The voice you hear singing actually belongs to Ellen Foley. Apparently, Karla and Meatloaf did a video to this song, and people associated Karla to it, so they decided to keep her on stage for the tour!!

So, there you have it. The Ladies of the 80’s and a little music trivia to boot. Thanks for sharing another 80’s music hits memory with me. Rock On!!!

1
Oct
02
2014

Great 80s Music Hits

When most people think of the 80s they do not have very fond memories of the music that was on the air at the time. We tend to think of the 70s as the “disco” era and the 60s as the time when rock music developed. The 60s were the days of the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Who, and a host of other great bands that we now think of as the seminal groups in rock history. But the 80s were a different story and do not get the respect that many experts think it should.

80s music hits included great bands like Tears for Fears and their fantastic international number one hit “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” and “Shout”. Who can forget Simple Minds and “Don’t You Forget About Me”? There were plenty of great groups making 80s music hits that just don’t get the credit they deserve.

There were modern pop groups too like Pet Shop Boys and their huge 80s music hit “East End Boys and West End Girls” or the digital Depeche Mode with “Strange Love”, “Policy of Truth”, “Personal Jesus” and “Route 66″. Other cult bands with truly great musicians sprang up like The Cure and their hit “Just Like Heaven”.

The 80s was also the time of bands such as the Psychedelic Furs and their big 80s music hit “Pretty in Pink” from the movie of the same name. There was also R.E.M. and their song “Losing My Religion” which was in many ways responsible for the proliferation of 90s style Modern Rock.

80s music hits were not limited to Pop music, but were also being created by bonafide rock bands such as Duran Duran with their hit “Rio” and also Bon Jovi with what many consider one of the best of the 80s music hits “Livin’ On A Prayer”. And who will ever forget Guns n’ Roses with “Sweet Child of Mine” which sounds as fresh today as it was back then.

The 80s were also the time of Michael Jackson, Prince, and Madonna, three giants of the industry who continued to churn out hit after hit for many years. Prince’s “Purple Rain” was just the right blend of rock and soul and the big hit from the album was “Let’s Go Crazy”. U2 began in the 80s and their songs “With or Without You” and “Pride (In the Name of Love) from their giant album The Joshua Tree began a long string of massive 80s music hits for them.

Whimsical music was also the order of the day and groups like Wham and their hit “Careless Whispers” topped the charts. A-Ha, a pop group from Sweden also rocked on with their big hit “Take on Me”.

There were some extremely dark songs as well like the moody “Voices Carry” by Til Tuesday, a one hit wonder. The Fixx added their fiery brand of rock with “Red Skies at Night”.

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