National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation? Tired. Ralphie and A Christmas Story? Overplayed. But Bill Murray starring as Francis Xavier Cross in 1988's Scrooged? Well, I guess I'm the only one who finds it brilliant fare for the holidays. Listen to our new podcast to find out why. Full Story
While just a footnote on the U.S. charts, Cliff Richard is one of England's most successful musicians having charted more than 125 singles in the UK since the 1950s. He is officially the most successful male solo artist in UK history, besting even names like Elton John, Phil Collins and Paul McCartney.
Richard made a nice run in America in the early ‘80s with a string of six Top 40 Hits that included such favorites as We Don't Talk Anymore and the Xanadu duet with Olivia Newton-John Suddenly. After hitting the Top 10 with We Don't Talk Anymore, Richard followed it up with underrated and never heard Carrie, which peaked at No. 34 on the U.S. charts in 1980.
While Richards holds the UK record with No. 1 hits in five consecutive decades (‘50's-‘90s), he never hit No. 1 in the U.S. as No. 6 was as high as Richards would go with Devil Woman in 1976. In November of 2013, Richards released his 100th album entitled The Fabulous Rock N Roll Songbook that is covers of ‘50s rock classics. http://www.cliffrichard.org/Full Story
Bruce Springsteen has built his reputation as someone who was not afraid of writing an autobiographical song. In 1988, Springsteen's marriage to model Julianne Phillips was crumbling and his not-so-covert description of the breakup was the forgotten single One Step Up.
One Step Up hit No. 13 on the singles, but never gets much airplay compared to the singles off the monster smash Born in the USA. The lyrics paint a sad picture of a doomed relationship with scenes like "Another fight and I slam the door on another battle in our dirty little war."
Julianne Phillips was a knockout model who first caught MTV viewer's eyes as the video vixen in 38 Special's If I'd Been the One and showed up as the ball and chain in Bruce's Glory Days video. In an ironic turn, the backup singer on One Step Up is Patti Sciafla, who might have contributed to the Springsteen-Phillips divorce and would eventually become Mrs. Springsteen herself in 1991.
On Jan. 14, 2014, Springsteen is back with his new album High Hopes.
Are Clint Eastwood's Dirty Harry movies a product of the '80s? Not really, they belong to the ages. But at least Sudden Impact belongs to 1983. Released on Dec. 8 of that year, Sudden Impact was the fourth movie in the series and the only one directed by Eastwood himself. And of course, it features the signature quote: "Go ahead, make my day."
In the flick, Harry Callahan is assigned a case where a rape victim is exacting revenge on her aggressors. Despite the popularity of Clint's big quote and the film series in general, Sudden Impact didn't make a huge impact with critics, who generally gave it a lukewarm review. Even Roger Ebert, who gave it three stars, remarked in his review that, "This movie has been edited with the economy of a 30-second commercial." Only one more Dirty Harry movie would follow: 1988's The Dead Pool.
Here are five more things you probably didn't know about Sudden Impact.
1. Although Eastwood made the phrase "Go ahead, make my day" famous, it was originally used a year earlier by actor Gary Swanson in 1982's Vice Squad, who said, "Go ahead, scumbag, make my day." …Full Story
Would you believe that in the 1980's Mick Jagger was a single man? Well at least we know in 1985 he was Lucky in Love.
Lucky in Love was the second single off of Jagger's She's the Boss album and reached No. 38 on the charts. The video is a fun playup of Jagger's notorious reputation of a skirt hound. Technically, Jagger was single in the ‘80s as he divorced Bianca Miacias in 1980 and would not marry model Jerry Hall until the ‘90s. While Jagger may have had free reign for most of the ‘80s, it was our beloved decade that he started his relationship and having kids with Hall. In keeping track of his Lucky in Love stats, Jagger has been married twice and sired seven children from four different women. He is also set to become a great-grandfather in 2014.
Even kids and teenagers who don't know much about the Rolling Stones, know the name of Mick Jagger. In 2011, Adam Levine and Maroon 5 hit No. 1 with Moves Like Jagger that has sold almost 14 million downloads and is one the top five downloaded singles in the digital age.Full Story
This week on Lost and Found, we'll cover some of the biggest names in music with songs that don't get played on the radio anymore.
The songs of Hall & Oates continue to remain popular today, however the solo work of Daryl Hall has ended up lost in the maze of radio stations. In 1986, Hall scored big with the No. 5 hit Dreamtime off his Three Hearts in the Happy Ending Machine album.
Dreamtime has a psychedelic Alice in Wonderland vibe and around the 3:00 minute mark the video features Daryl in the middle of the lawn maze of England's Hever Castle. According to an old NY Post article, Hall was lowered by helicopter into the middle of the maze for the video shoot and before filming could wrap up, the rain started to fall. Hall was unable to exit the complicated maze and got drenched. …Full Story
As a child in the '70s -- before discovering the true greatness of the '80s, I was probably frightened most by three things: the introduction to Space:1999, the Bigfoot episode of Six Million Dollar Man and any character played by Bruce Dern.
Dern was the abusive Tom Buchanon in 1974's The Great Gatsby, a movie and book that was frequently used as a torture device on school kids back then. The book? Love it. The movie? I can still hear Dern's nasal, pinched rage and it makes me shiver. In 1977's Black Sunday, Dern plays the blimp driver that craves a suicide that will take as many people possible with me. Sundays were never Super again after that flick.
These days, Dern is earning raves for his work in Nebraska, where he plays a frail, older man who is convinced he's won a publisher's sweepstakes and decides to hit the road to claim his money. Tampa Bay Times film critic Steve Persall recently interviewed Dern, and it's an AMAZING look into the 77-year-old actor.
"A lot of people think they could never act?" Dern tells Persall. "Well, g-- d--- yes you can act, if you're willing to be publicly private, to expose what's in your heart."
Click here for the full interview.Full Story
Han Solo's blaster from Star Wars is up for sale? The same one he shot Greedo with?!? O.M.G. Can't breathe. It's as if a million nerds raced toward an online auction site and were suddenly silenced ... by the blaster's estimated value.
Between $200,000 and $300,000, according to BoingBoing. Maybe if we sued on behalf of Greedo's estate. Or if we pulled off a class-action suit from the survivors of Jabba's sailing vessel.
According to the auction house, it's indeed the same blaster from the first three Star Wars flicks. …Full Story
Chewbacca slippers! Why, they're PERFECT for the holidays. And they come in Yoda and Darth Vader models too. And even better, Stuck in the '80s has a special code to get you 15 percent off these slippers and any other product on Bunnyslippers.com.
The code is STARWARS15 and it's good through Dec. 13.
If you're really not into Star Wars (then I pity you), I'd recommend the Star Trek Trouble With Tribbles pair of slippers.
While you're at BunnySlippers, be sure to stop by the Bunny Blog, written by the great Travis Greenwood, who will be serving as a guest-host when we do our Real Genius podcast in 2014.Full Story
Over the years as a Stuck in the '80s fanboy, I've always touted Donald Fagen's 1982 first solo album, The Nightfly, as one of my favorite albums of all time. After a mild hit with I.G.Y, Fagen released the Red Scare video of New Frontier that hit No. 70 on the singles chart in 1983.
New Frontier is a fun video set in the Red Scare era, where a young man entices his date to an underground fallout shelter "in case the Russians try to drop the bomb". In between seducing her with jazz and conversation, the fun video intersperses classic animation that is reminiscent of the cartoons shown at the movies and drive-ins back in the day.
The force behind Steely Dan, Fagen keeps busy recording and performing music. His last album, Sunken Condos, was released in 2012. He has also released his autobiography entitled Eminent Hipsters in 2013.
The song in question is reportedly Modern Talking's You're My Heart, You're My Soul. The dance skills are all the dog's.
Hat tip to Carol Janssen for finding this.Full Story
Soon the Internet buzz will die down from the death of the family dog, Brian Griffin, on the animated hit Family Guy. We honor the animated Brian with a little animated video of our own from the Newcity Rockers Black Dog.
Some might think it sacrilege to remake the classic 1971 Led Zeppelin song, but Boston's Newcity Rockers put a flavored twist on the song that hit No. 80 on the singles chart in 1987. The video features some nice rotoscoping and is interesting eye candy, no matter what your stance is on the remaking of classic rock songs.
While Black Dog contains no lyrics about a dog, legend has it the song was named after a stray black lab that wandered around the Headley Grange studio grounds where Led Zeppelin IV was being recorded. Full Story
If a new Van Halen album sounds like the perfect Christmas present for an '80s fan, then here's some good news ... for next Christmas, or maybe the one after that. Frontman David Lee Roth has gone on the record to say new music is in the works.
"I was up at Edward [Van Halen]‘s house, maybe three days ago – just before I came here to the city – and we’re starting to put music together," he told Jim Florentine Ozzy’s Boneyard on SiriusXM. (See a clip here). "Not to give away exactly what the package will be, it’s gonna be about 18 months, I think."
Eighteen months?? Why so long, Diamong Dave?
"‘Cause we are eminently art-centric, which is a really fancy way of saying we really do generate all the artwork, the graphics, etc. We don't hire out and have somebody design a bunch of album covers for us and then choose…. we start from scratch ourselves. ... On and on… stage design, lighting rig, putting the show together – it takes about a year and a half, 18 months, because any idea that you have is 85 phone calls."
By the way, the new album news put "Van Halen" on the top of the Yahoo trending list yesterday. The old boys still got it.Full Story
In 1983 Lynn Goldsmith came up with the original idea to record a comedy/music album that mocked the Self Help Profession. With incredible musician friends and contacts from her rock photography career, Goldsmith created the alias of Will Powers and released the album Dancing for Mental Health.
Several of those songs have become cult classics including Kissing With Confidence. The spoken voice of Will Powers is actually Goldsmith's voice shifted downwards in pitch to sound male. Some of the contributors to Kissing With Confidence are Steve Winwood, Nile Rodgers and Todd Rundgren. And yes, that is Carly Simon on vocals.
In between the animated sections of the video, it is Goldsmith/Will Powers that you see speaking the words of how to be a good kisser. While it didn't chart in the U.S., Kissing With Confidence made it to No. 17 on the UK charts. Goldsmith, who graduated from Michigan with a Magna Cum Laude double degree in English and Psychology, also received help from Sting on the equally clever Adventures in Success off the same album. …Full Story
Remember the speculation that Billy Joel might be announcing his retirement today in New York City? Turns out I was half right. Joel isn't quitting music, but seemingly is tired of all the touring, so instead he'll do one concert per month at Madison Square Garden until people are tired of his playing.
Calling this MSG's "first-ever music franchise," Joel's first four shows (Jan. 27, Feb. 3, March 21, April 18) are already sold out. A May 9 show (also Joel's birthday) will go on sale soon.
There's no "official" proclamation that this will mark the end of his large, national tours. But it sure feels that way.Full Story