Bad 80’s…Good 80’s

the other night i was watching VH1 Classic…could be the best show on the tube anymore,  now that 24 has bit the dust  ( i can’t even bring myself to do a decent eulogy yet…)

anyway,  classic was playing vintage footage from the 1983 US festival from san bernardino, california.   it was an epic concert…sort of woodstock,  but only in the california heat.

while i was watching,  they played a set by triumph…one of the greatest three-piece rock bands of all-time.   i don’t think i have thought of triumph for 20 years!   even rock newbies of today know some of their songs.   just check out guitar hero.

so it got me thinking.   most people who are old enough have pretty strong feelings about the 80’s.   even youngsters have grown up listening to people talk about the 80’s.   television shows parody the 80’s.   i was a youth pastor in the 80’s…in southern california…the home of valley girls and skate punks…and they were in my youth group!

i think we should spend some time playing “Bad 80’s…Good 80’s”. it’s a game i just made up.   we’ll do it every once in a while…whenever i’m feeling nostalgic.   here’s this week’s question:

“what is one really bad band from the 80’s…and one really good band from the 80’s…in your opinion?

no genres.   no “types” of music.   name specific bands.   no lists of bands.  it would be helpful if you gave a little commentary…but not necessary.   feel free to comment more than once.

don’t be a wimp.   step up to the plate.   throw down.   everybody has an opinion on this one,  so show your colors for your favorites!   feel free to challenge people’s choices. thick skin will prevail on this post.

so i’ll start.   one of my least favorite band of the 80’s was depeche mode.   the kids in my youth group loved them…played them on their “walkmans” (cassette)…even dressed like goths before goths got popular.

pure greatness out of the 80’s was U2.   for me,  hands down,  the best band of my lifetime.   longevity,  alone,  spells their greatness.   they have played in five different decades! they have influence generations of young musicians.   absolutely amazing…

what about you?

in case you want to check out “triumph”,  here’s a clip from the US Festival, 1983.   and yes,  brandon,  i see where the bass player is standing…


33 thoughts on “Bad 80’s…Good 80’s

  1. My Goods:
    Gloria Estefan & The Miami Sound Machine
    Simply red
    Stray cats

    My BADs:

    Dire Straits
    The Go-Gos
    Cyndi Lauper

  2. B-52s? you don’t like Love Shack?
    and you can only like Van Halen if your favorite song is Hot for Teacher…

  3. Good from the 80’s:
    (Metal and Hair bands)
    ZZ Top
    Def Leppard
    Motley Crue
    Judas Priest

    Duran Duran (love em or hate em, they were always relevant)
    The Police
    Depeche Mode
    The Cure
    Tears for Fears
    Adam Ant

    Bad from the 80’s:
    (all genres)
    Alanis Morrisette
    Milli Vanilli
    Paula Abdul
    Corey Hart
    And any boy band EVER created

    Special catagory added for people who have artistic talent as far as writing and playing guitar, but should never EVER pick up a microphone and sing:
    1. Bruce Springsteen
    2. Neil Young
    3. Tom Petty
    and most of all,
    4. Bob (why are the dogs crying?) Dylan

    Sorry…didnt mean to ramble, but I can talk about this stuff ALL DAY!!

  4. saw Triumph in the 80s’ and watched Rik Emmett play two guitars at the same time with one in his left hand and one in his right hand. He played a duet with HIMSELF doing the straight line one one guitar and the harmony on the other. It was amazing. Glad to see there are other Triumph fans out there!!

    ZZ Top
    Run DMC
    Queen (well maybe just a little fat bottomed girl)

    New Kids on the Block

  6. did everyone forget about Tiffany and Debbie Gibson?

    I also don’t think if you were not old enough to see “Empire Strikes Back” in the Theater you cannot post your Good and Bads.

  7. AND who is going to be the first Suck up and say
    Amy Grant, Eternity or the Christian instrumental music that goes along with images of landscapes that comes on in the middle of the night.

  8. Good:
    Duran Duran, Stevie Wonder, Rush, Journey, Peter Gabriel, Van Halen

    Numerous one hit wonders, The B-52s, The Rolling Stones…ugh…

  9. brandon, i’m guessing that tiffany and debbie gibson are on your good list? seems fitting for you.

    metallica is right behind U2 on my all-time 80’s list. agree that the beasties were incredible. king’s X is my favorite band that only their loyal fans really know.

    spending the 80’s in huntington beach california created a deep love for the whole punk genre. changed everything for me…including what i really liked about “christian” music in the 80’s: undercover band, altar boys, 77’s, daniel amos and the best of all, the lost dogs.

    can’t believe scott would choose duran duran over the stones! must be some twisted generational thing.

    oh yeah…who didn’t like the bangles? come on…

  10. Let us not forget Boy George and the Culture Club when we are discussing suckage.

    Josh just went and saw REO Speedwagon last week in Flower Mound.

  11. I have tried hard to really like/understand the Rolling Stones and after years of effort, I just don’t get it. They just suck.

  12. You can add the Beatles to that list of overrated bands. A lot of their stuff is pure crap! They may have started a movement but thankfully others came behind them and cleaned up their crap.

  13. UH OH! you were my Friend Luke until you pulled the Beatles into the 80s crap. I never could listen to the Beatles like my parents. But upon listening on my own the past few years, I get them prolly more than my parents ever did. Looking back at old studio footage there were lots of musicians hanging out, collaborating and playing along side. The Beatles must have been doing something right. There are only 12 possible notes in Western Music but everyone seems to copy the greatness of THE BEATLES.

  14. I have a lot of people hanging around me all the time. That doesn’t mean that I’m great. Means there were a lot of long hair musicians sitting around playing music.

    I just don’t get them! Simple music, weak lyrics and overrated vocals. They made 900 records and because they have a few decent songs mingled in with a bunch of crap some pimply faced 7th grader could play… they some how are considered greatness.

    I think you were smarter when you were younger.

  15. REO Speedwagon in FLOWER MOUND? What’s next? Hat Tricks off 121?

    I also forgot Billy Idol. They guy was a genius in the 80’s!!

  16. I will agree with you. The most popular album was made of almost pure nonsense Lyric wise. But they admitted it also.
    They have had years of people getting a chance to Love or Hate them. That is greatness.

    I am not sure if anyone said Stevie Ray as their Goods. But, had he lived until today, I am afraid we would be laughing at his music. Stevie was starting to dabble in what we would call smooth Jazz. We would be listening to his guitar in elevators had he lived. See Jeff Beck.

    What is always great about music is there is something for everyone.

    I may not get Miley Cyrus but my kid does.
    My mom did not get anything from the 80s, but I did.
    MY grandfather did not get anything mom listened too unless the name Goodman was in front of it. I never want to fall in the trap and tell someone else or another generation there music sucks. Even if it sounds like Poo.

  17. Ah the 80’s- although we all know the 70’s was when music was great!!! lol

    Good- Def Leppard

    Bad-Twisted Sister

    CELTICS SUCK!!!! Kobe and purple & gold all the way Mike!!!

  18. The only 80s music on my iPod is run dmc so I’ll go with them, but i’m proudly going to claim incompetence on the subject on account of me missing half of the decade due to lack of life

  19. More during the 70’s than the 80’s while these bands were on their way up, but REO Speedwagon, Cheap Trick, Head East, Arrowsmith, Silver Bullett Band, Iron Butterfly (in the running for worst band EVER) all used to play regularly at an “establishment” I worked at during college. It’s been a lot of years since I’ve even heard REO’s name. I never realized thay made it big on the national scene, I thought they were more of a regional band.

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