Tag Archives: 1980

The Jam – Going Underground (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

Good morning! Released in March 1980, ‘Going Underground’ was the first UK chart-topping single by The Jam. Such was the buzz about the band, it went straight to number one as part of a double A-side with ‘Dreams of Children’. Still, it came as a surprise to the band. They were caught on the hop in the US and had to cancel their tour immediately, flying back on concorde to do their promo work in Blighty. The song was released as a single, but not as part of the band’s six studio albums.

Tagged ,

Peter Gabriel – Intruder (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

peter-gabriel-1980

‘Intruder’ is the opening song off Peter Gabriel’s third and arguably best solo album. The Melt album saw the reunification of former bandmates Gabriel and Phil Collins. The latter’s instantly recognisable gated snare drums, which became one of the signature sounds of the 1980s.

Tagged , , , ,

David Bowie – Ashes To Ashes (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

david-bowie-1980

One year on and the loss still flows. David Bowie’s 1980 single ‘Ashes to Ashes’ is undoubtedly one of the strangest songs to top the charts. David Bowie tried to sum up his life’s work with Scary Monsters, an album that touches a number of the styles that he had navigated during the 1970s. However, there was nothing to touch the synthesised nostalgia of ‘Ashes to Ashes’ and its reference to Major Tom.

Tagged ,

David Bowie – It’s No Game (Part 1) (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

David Bowie Pierrot

Disconcerting vocals will be a short-lived theme, certainly now that I pull out my ace – David Bowie’s 1980 songbook Scary Monsters (Super Creeps). If you think Billy Corgan and Tom Verlaine can be discordant, check out ‘It’s No Game’ and ‘Kingdom Come’. I discard the latter because it’s actually painful. Whereas ‘It’s No Game’ opens the album, features Robert Fripp on lead guitar and is a damn good song despite Bowie sounding like he is having his intestines pulled out. That last bit came from an NME review. Have a great weekend.

Tagged , , , ,

Motörhead – Ace Of Spades (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

Motörhead

Natalie Cole was not the only loss to the industry over the last month or so. First, Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor, Motörhead’s drummer dies in November. And then, more recently, Lemmy spontaneously combusted. Well if he didn’t, I don’t want to think of him that way. ‘The Ace Of Spades’ is the Motörhead track. One critic once said that it “wouldn’t be out of place ushering in the end of the world”. Sir Lemmy, you are dancing with the devil no doubt. Have a great weekend.

Tagged , ,

The Korgis – Everybody’s Got To Learn Sometime (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

The Korgis

According to The Korgi’s front man, James Warren, ‘Everybody’s Got to Learn Sometime’ took just 15 minutes to write. I think the string arrangements may have taken longer. This was 1980. I was knee high, and perhaps for ghat reason, this pop track is indelibly etched into my sound locker. The song featured on the group’s second album, Dumb Waiters. Have a great week, but you may need to indulge me for the next few days.

Tagged ,

Kano – It’s Ready (1980)

YouTube – No Amazon – No iTunes – Discogs

Kano

Italo disco can often be an uncomfortable fusion of synthesiser, drum machine and the disco sound of handclaps. In truth, the unorthodox genre does not get much better than the Tantra and Mr Flagio tracks that have already featured on this blog. But if anyone can compete, it’s Kano. The band started out of the blocks with their debut single ‘I’m Ready’. The song is probably better known now for the lead sample it afforded Tag Team’s ‘Whoomp! (There It Is)’ a decade or so later.

Tagged , , , ,

Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark – Messages (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark

I spent a conversation in the weekend defending the music of the 1980s. A little l’esprit de l’escalier now follows. Starting in 1980, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark had already gained fame earlier in the year with their synth pop standard ‘Enola Gay’. Then came ‘Messages’ with its killer opening line, “It worries me, this kind of thing\How you hope to live alone and occupy your waking hours.” It featured on their eponymous debut. Have a great week. 1981 tomorrow.

Tagged , ,

Edwin Birdsong – Rapper Dapper Snapper (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

Edwin Birdsong 1979

Edwin Birdsong was both a creative keyboard player and songwriter. He co-wrote last week’s RAMP post ‘Daylight’ with Roy Ayers.  In 1980, on the Salsoul label, Birdsong would create something really leftfield – the dance groove that was ‘Rapper Dapper Snapper’. The beat would would enter into the public consciousness in the decade that followed when De La Soul used it as the rhythm for ‘Me, Myself & I’.

Tagged , , ,

Freeez – Southern Freeez (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

Freeez

Ingrid Mansfield Allman provided the vocals on the UK funk soul track ‘Southern Freeez’. It was 1980 and the band was John Rocca’s Freeez. Have a great weekend.

Tagged , , ,

Robert Palmer – Johnny and Mary (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

Robert Palmer

Good morning. I heard the Todd Terje-Bryan Ferry cover of ‘Johnny and Mary’ this weekend. Despite being at the receiving end of one of Rod Stewart’s bouts of peer admiration (‘Young Turks’), Robert Palmer’s song has stood the test of time remarkably well. ‘Johnny and Mary’ featured on Palmer’s 1980 long player Clues. Have a good week.

Tagged , , , ,

UB40 ‎– Food For Thought (1980)

YouTube – AmazoniTunes – Discogs

UB40

Released on Graduate Records, ‘Food For Thought’ was the first single to reach the UK Top 10 without the backing of a major record company. It helped that it was released as a double A side along with phenomenal ‘King‘.  Their recent feature on Later with Jools Holland was a reminder of just how good UB40 were at the outset, before the 1980s got hold of them.

Tagged , ,

Hilton Felton – Bee Bop Boogie (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

Hilton Felton

Now for some jazz breaks. Hilton Felton’s cover of Grant Green’s ‘Talkin’ About J.C.’ is called ‘Bee Bop Boogie’ because that is what he does. His reworking of a classic features on Felton’s 1980 long player A Man For All Reasons.

Tagged , ,

Stevie Wonder – Master Blaster (Jammin’) (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunesDiscogs

Stevie Wonder 1980

A tribute to legend Bob Marley, ‘Master Blaster (Jammin’)’ brought Stevie Wonder’s midas touch to reggae. It featured on his underrated 1980 album Hotter than July. The song reminds me so much of my childhood – fond and distant summer memories. Have a great week and let’s hope this weather holds out.

Tagged , , , ,

Barry Brown – It Ago Dread (1980)

YouTubeAmazoniTunes Discogs

Barry Brown

Unless you’re a fan of early dancehall, most of the listeners familiar with this tune will be because of dub pioneer King Tubby. Tubby’s ‘Flag’ and ‘Patriotic’ dubs both feature Brown’s rendition of ‘It Ago Dread’. Barry Brown’s original version was released on the 1980 album Showcase, a culmination of his work with Tubby’s crew, particularly Prince Jammy and Bunny Lee. Have a great week.

Tagged , , , , , ,