The music in my chiropractor’s office (Dr. Shawn Smith) is always good, so I commented that I really liked whatever radio station it was set on. That led to a discussion about the kinds of music we liked, and we talked about all the “old stuff” we listen to. Dr. Smith asked if I’d ever heard the song “1985” by Bowling for Soup. It’s all about classic rock, he said.
Well, I hadn’t heard of it, so he explained the lyrics talked about music from the ‘80s, with references to a lot of music icons who might seem like old fogies to today’s youth.
On my way to finding the song online, I discovered the musicians are based in Denton, Texas. Ironically, my niece is a musician from Denton (hey, Bonnie!). Small world.
So, back to BFS. The lyrics to “1985” make reference to those icons I mentioned (Springsteen, Madonna, Blondie, White Snake, Duran Duran) and take a poke at MTV for straying from its roots of playing music videos. There are also a couple of ‘80s movies mentioned: Pretty in Pink, St. Elmo’s Fire, The Breakfast Club. (Apparently, the songwriters are big John Hughes fans. So am I.)
It always makes me cringe when I hear a song made popular two years ago referred to as “old school.” Another niece, excited about attending a Lady Gaga concert, gushed that she’d found some “vintage” Lady Gaga. Now I’m wondering how someone born in 1986 could possibly create anything that could remotely be labeled vintage.
Maybe my perceptions are wrong. When I think golden oldies, my mind replays early Beatles, the Who and the Rolling Stones, the Monkees, Beach Boys and Iron Butterfly. Thanks to my piano teacher and band directors, I can even recall the music to some of the seriously golden oldies, like the 3 Bs: Bach, Brahms, Beethoven. Today that might be Beyonce, Britney and Bieber.
If you missed the song “1985” but remember the year, you’ll probably enjoy the references. If you’re post-1985, check out the video.