20 faves #20: pink, greatest hits ... so far
pink, the beautiful trauma tour

music friday: 1986

The Smiths, "There Is a Light That Never Goes Out". Two weeks ago, I congratulated myself on knowing a Smiths song. I don't know this one, and listening to it, I don't care that I don't know it. I appear to have zero interest in The Smiths.

Run-D.M.C., "Walk This Way". Aerosmith owes Run-D.M.C. big time.

Madonna, "Papa Don't Preach". Sometimes when I vote, I look to see who supports an issue or candidate, or who is against it, to get a sense of where the matter lies. Tipper Gore liked this song.

The The, "Infected". This list contains a lot of music I don't care about. It also includes a lot of artists I've never seen live. This may say something about my music tastes in 1986, when I turned 33 years old.

Robert Cray, "Smoking Gun". Christgau gave this album an A+, and I like Cray enough ... nice that someone was still playing blues in 1986. But Last.fm tells me that listening to this track for this blog post was the first time in ten years I'd listened to a Robert Cray song.

The Bangles, "Walk Like an Egyptian". Guaranteed to put you back in 1986, if you happened to be alive then.

Elvis Costello and The Attractions, "I Want You". Should be played by depressives on Valentine's Day.

Eric B. & Rakim, "Eric B. Is President". The first single from these Hip Hop icons.

Janet Jackson, "What Have You Done for Me Lately". Still a few years away from making better albums than her brother.

Bruce Springsteen, "Because the Night". The video is a cheat, taken not from 1986 but from a 1978 concert when Bruce used to play yet-to-be-released songs. Patti Smith's version was the hit in 1978, and it was a great track. But we loved hearing this in concert, and it turned up on Bruce's 1986 live box set, so it belongs here, right? That version came from 1980. We saw Bruce three times on the Darkness Tour in '78, probably marking the moment when he became our favorite for good. It remains the best tour I've ever seen.

Here's one more song, since I feel like I had too many on this week's list that didn't speak to me.

Comments

Tomás

Run D.M.C. owe Ric Rubin big time.

Steven Rubio

By 1986, Aerosmith hadn't had a hit single in a decade, and their albums, which at their peak went 8x Platinum, by the 80s were Gold, not Platinum. The pairing with Run-D.M.C. revived their careers. But you are right about Rubin.

Tomás

No doubt. Just that, as the story goes, Run D.M.C. had to be arm twisted by Rubin all that way to the bank with that one.

Aerosmith's album "Permanent Vacation" came out the year after the remake and it surely helped. Every teenager knew who they were, unlike the year before. Of course, it was their first album in the MTV era, with Bruce Fairbairn (at the start of a legendary hard rock production run) at the controls, and Desmond Child (who was like gold from 1986-1990) writing with Perry and Tyler...so they had a lot going for them.

Steven Rubio

Point taken. And I don't mean to belittle Aerosmith ... I understand their music more than I understand The Smiths. I probably prefer Grand Funk Railroad, but that's just my age horning in. I do believe that "Rock Box" is better than anything else Run-D.M.C. did, better than anything Aerosmith did. So I guess I should say that Run-D.M.C. owes Eddie Martinez big time. And Professor Irwin Corey :-).

Tomás

I had to watch the video to get your joke. That was frickin hilarious!

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