Paul Heinz

Original Fiction, Music and Essays

The Music of 1979-1980

In our efforts to make music matter again in our lives (see Making Music Matter, part 1 and part 2), a few friends and I met at Kevin’s “Wall of Sound” basement in Wisconsin to play and discuss music from the golden years of 1979-1980, and the results were even more brilliant than I had expected.  What a incredible two year period, when hard rock, punk, new wave, soul, arena rock, fusion, prog rock, folk rock and every other kind of rock you can slap a label on converged for a perfect period of music proliferation.  And get this – most of it was actually played on the radio back in the day!  Crazy times.  1979-1980 might be the strongest two years in my book.  What about yours?

Here’s the list in all its glory – probably close to six hours of music.  It should be noted that music selections were viewed through the lenses of white suburban men who were once white suburban boys.  Notably absent are artists like Kool and the Gang, Isaac Hayes, Donna Summers, Earth Wind and Fire, etc.  We are worse for it.

The Knack – Good Girls Don’t

The Knack – Let me Out

The Police – Bombs Away

The Romantics – Tom Boy

Off Broadway – Bad Indication

Nick Lowe – Switch Board Susan

Roxy Music – Over You

Billy Thorpe – Dream Maker (this is not a good song, but was used to stump Kevin.  It was not successful).

Billy Thorpe – Children of the Sun

Jeff Beck (with Jan Hammer) – Star Cycle

Donny Iris – She’s So Wild (also used to stump Kevin.  This one was successful!)

Donny Iris – Ah!  Leah!

OMD – Red Frame/White Light

Pete Townsend – Let My Love Open the Door

Pete Townsend – And I Moved

Led Zeppelin – I’m Gonna Crawl

Blondie – Union City Blue

Ian McLagan – La De Da (this stumped everyone)

Alan Parsons Project – Snake Eyes

Fleetwood Mac – Brown Eyes

Talking Heads – Air

Rolling Stones – Emotional Rescue

Paul McCartney – So Glad to See You

Joy Division – Love Will Tear Us Apart

Jackson Browne – Boulevard

The Kinks – Moving Pictures

Queen – Don’t Try Suicide

The Police – Reggatta De Blanc

The Cars – Let’s Go

Cheap Trick – Dream Police

Yes – Does is Really Happen

John Cougar – Ain’t Even Done with the Night

Bruce Springsteen – Point Blank

Bruce Springsteen – Cadillac Ranch

The Pretenders – Precious

Supertramp – Child of Vision

Bob Welsh – Precious Love

Rush – Free Will

AC/DC – Shot Down in Flames

Generation X – Kiss Me Deadly

The Kings – Partyitis

The Kinds – This Beat Goes On/Switchin’ To Glide

Neil Young – Powder Finger

U2 – A Day Without Me

U2 – I Will Follow

Rickie Lee Jones – Danny’s All-Star Joint

Bob Dylan – Gotta Serve Somebody

Steely Dan – Gaucho

Dr. Hook – Sexy Eyes

REO Speedwagon – Don’t Let Him Go

Yipes – Out in California

The Eagles – In the City

Head East – It’s Got to be Real

The Clash – Lost in the Supermarket

The Damned – Jet Boy, Jet Girl

Joe Jackson – On the Radio

Van Halen – D.O.A.

Journey – Too Late

Kansas – Hold On

Genesis – Turn it on Again

Talking Heads – Once in a Lifetime

Tom Petty – Even the Losers

Elvis Costello – Senior Service

Joan Jett – Bad Reputation

Aretha Franklin – Think

Aerosmith – Three Mile Smile

Aerosmith – No Surprise

Al Stewart – Midnight Rocks

Muppets – Rainbow Connection

Peter Gabriel – No Self Control

Elton John – Little Jeanie

Not too shabby a list!  And we didn’t even touch Pink Floyd, Billy Joel, Prince, The B-52s, Michael Jackson, Graham Parker, Robert Palmer, Santana, Kiss, ELO, Chaka Kahn, Pat Benatar, Dire Straits, ZZ Top, Toto, Styx, etc.

Tell me a two year period that’s better.  There might be!

Copyright, 2017, Paul Heinz, All Right Reserved