Friday, September 28, 2007

Self amusement through the 80s

Now I'm on a huge 80s music nostalgia trip.

I'm not sure if some of these were popular here or not, and I am not prone to making lists. But I somehow felt like sitting down and listing songs from the Delhi disco period of my life. I actually own some of these. Others I came across and remembered that I used to love while winding down the 80s road on iTunes.

This isn't comprehensive, in any particular order, or anything. And some of it might even pain you.

Forever Young - Alphaville
Time After Time - Cyndi Lauper
Rio - Duran Duran
Hungry Like the Wolf - Duran Duran
Last Night a DJ Saved My Life - Attraction
All Night Long - Lionel Richie
Goodbye Girl - Squeeze
Ain't Nothin' Goin' on but the Rent - Gwen Guthrie
Venus - Bananarama
Tainted Love - Soft Cell
Here Comes the Rain Again - Eurythmics
Total Eclipse of the Heart - Bonnie Tyler
Broken Wings - Mister Mister
True - Spandau Ballet
The Power of Love - Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go - Wham!
Something About You - Level 42
Obsession - Animotion
Lady in Red - Chris de Burgh
19 - Paul Hardcastle
Wouldn't It Be Good - Nik Kershaw
Hold Me Now - Thompson Twins
No One is to Blame - Howard Jones
Caribbean Queen - Billy Ocean
Relax - Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Don't You Want Me - Human League
Need You Tonight - INXS
Whisper to a Scream - Icycle Works
Two of Hearts - Stacy Q
Rhythm of the Night - DeBarge
Safety Dance - Men Without Hats

I know there are many I'm forgetting. Since Kristin dated the DJ at the Gunghroo for a while, we had an excellent mixed tape of many of the gems listed above. Which we played over and over and over. I wish I still had it, although I have nothing to play it on at this point.

We did a cheerleading routine (yes, I was a cheerleader - but only for a year, and it was India, so I feel like that mitigates the ridiculousness of it) to a Human League song, and I think it was Seconds - it was definitely off the Dare album, but it bugs me that I can't remember which song it was at this point.

Last Night a DJ Saved My Life is a song I found on iTunes. That they played every night at the Number One disco. A phone rings during the song, and it's the ring of one of those old, dial telephones. Which we had one of, for the entire house, in Delhi.

The phone was very heavy black plastic. It sat in our front all. And sometimes worked, sometimes not. Sometimes you could hear the men who (we were pretty sure) tapped our line having a conversation. You could politely tell them that you wanted to make a call, and they'd stop talking.

Once Betty got so frustrated with lack of phone connection that she picked up the phone and bashed it against the wall. And it broke apart.

She went to the neighbors to call the phone company to say her phone wasn't working.

When the repairman came to fix it, he saw it shattered. "Madam," he said, holding distinct chunks of the phone in each hand, "I see your problem."

He was entirely unfazed. Perhaps he saw this level of phone frustration all the time.

Digging into your music past, even if it's embarrassing, is so much fun. Some of these songs, like All Night Long, make me wistful. That was the song played at the end of the night, and everyone would get in a big group slow dance circle and sway. How many times in your life are you that intensely close to a large number of people? I don't mean just physically. I loved the sense of community, the closeness.

If you believe that music tells you a lot about a person, that's who I was in high school. Or maybe who I still am.


  1. hey Girl, You forgot the Cheerleading competition song when we went to Islamabad Sophomore year....."Hello Again" by The Cars.....i think I still have a picture of us in saddle shoes:)


  2. What a great list! I love lists almost as much as 80's music.

  3. I can get those specialized music stations on the upper numbers of my television. One week I was hooked into '80's stuff, and some friends and I were online and shooting off lyrics I was hearing, letting them guess the song. Funny thing is...those sad love songs got everyone down, and they were saying "Turn it off." Heh. They did sound good, though. No One Is To Blame. That was one. Oh yeah.

  4. One of my favorite albums is the soundtrack to Not Just Another Teen Movie, which is all modern bands covering songs from this era. I cannot even begin to describe how much it rocks.

  5. They played Howard Jones in a disco? I would've gone with Rick Astley myself.

  6. Are you kidding me??? You posted my all time favorite song from the 80s first!

    What a great song list. You really brought me back.

    And thinking of you and Double D's Daughter in saddle shoes.... PRICELESS!!! Where are the pics?

  7. DD'sD - Cringe. Us in red and white saddle shoes. Go Falcons!

    HKW - Thanks! That's right - I knew you were a list person!

    WC - Hi! Thanks - that's a nice story. I need an all 80s all the time station.

    LMNt - I don't know that movie. I'll have to look!

    Eric - We even had a John Denver song once in a while. I'm not saying it all made sense.

    Almost - Forever Young by Alphaville!? That's my absolute favorite song from then as well! I love the whole CD, actually. As for pics, huh, I wonder. If I do I should post them.

  8. What about "Tarzan Boy" by Baltimora? Or was that only popular in Bangalore? Otherwise, the list sounds a lot like what we'd listen to "down South." "Lady in Red" was the most popular "slow dance" song ... heck, I heard it in bars when I lived in India a couple of years ago.

    Although, now that I think about it, no Bryan Adams?? That seems inconceivable. I think "Summer of 69" may be the most popular song of all time in India.

    (BTW, Last Night a DJ Saved My Life is a forgotten classic, IMO.)

  9. Not only a great list, but you've liberated me! Now I don't feel so alone in my secret love for Safety Dance. What a relief....

  10. In case you don't remember "Tarzan Boy" -- and if you've never heard it, I may begin to doubt this whole "I grew up in India" shtick from the blond girl -- I thought I'd refresh your memory. :)

  11. Dave - One, I forgot Bryan Adams! How could I forget Bryan Adams? And even more importantly, thank you thank you for the "Jungle Life" song! I never knew the name of it, had forgotten all about it and I love it! We heard that ALL THE TIME.

    Riley - Everyone should love Safety Dance. S S S S A A A A...

  12. Lisa, Great choices but you are not helping the turntable in my brain. I will have Safety dance juxtaposed with Lady in Red in my brain all night. Great list, but I think a little Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark or some Ah-ha should be added. Have a good weekend.

  13. Sean! It's a travesty that I left off Take on Me or If You Leave or So in Love! Thanks for the reminder!

  14. Hey pretty rockin' list you have there girly. The only songs I'd add would be *Dead Man's Party* by Oingo Boingo and it's just not the 80's without a Tears For Fears tune, *Head Over Heels* of course. I really do miss the 80's sometimes.

    [runs and gets his Alf lunch box]

  15. What a fun post! I've been so busy I haven't been able to visit and comment much, but oh wow, what a treat!

    I went throught the pop phase like you with the same list of songs more or less, but then went to France and was exposed to bands like the Communards and Cock Robin.

    And then there was the darker phase, DePeche Mode, New Order, The Smiths, The Cure, The Bolshoi, Cocteau Twins.....I soooo cherish my '80s music.

    Thanks for the reminder.


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