Earworm: Decade brought to you by Massengill.
On my 10th Christmas, I received from my parents a mid-sized GE radio/cassette player/recorder. Monaural. Condenser microphone. No auto-reverse. No digital tuning. Just a little device to play a little low-definition music. I LOVED it.
My cousins had gotten word of this, and they gave me a pair of audio cassette tapes: Rock Of The '80s by various artists that I never heard of before or after (Mind you-- this was 1981. How could they put together a compilation of '80s hits in time for Christmas of that year?), and I Love Rock & Roll, by the feisty Joan Jett & The Blackhearts. Even at age 10, I recognized the irony of silly anthology of a two-year-old decade, and I barely gave the former a listen. But Joan Jett had something going on, and I wore that tape out, after a few years in my growing rotation.
I remember realizing that there was a lot more music out there than just what the Top 40 radio played on the pop stations, but the other kids were listening to it, and I got tired-head trying to think for myself... so I listened to the ensuing mess of crappy pop music, too. I hate myself a little bit for that.
With a few notable exceptions, the 1980s was a decade filled with pop music presided over by pretty boys acting more and more effeminate, and with music boiling down to synthesizers. No meat. The poster boys for the decade were probably Duran Duran, who did the sound track for the cheesiest James Bond movie ever made: A View To A Kill. The sissification of the mix is complete when you realize that it is Roger Moore's last Bond film, and even he didn't like it. That's right: Moore --the PETA-endorsing, fois gras-detracting, Effectal-whiffing, self-professed hoplophobe-- who was the centerpiece of this pile of stinky, said that the flick was lame.
And he was right. Even Christopher Walken and an armed blimp couldn't save it.
The Duran Duran song "A View To A Kill" went to #2 on the pop charts, and a music video (a video short, made to accompany the music, made to accompany the motion picture. We were beginning to spin tighter and tighter knots.) was created.
And now, 24 years later, the music rings in my head. Damn it.