Music

The Producers

It’s been New Wave November on our blog and social media sites this month and since today is the last day of the month, we want to go out on a high note. We will do just that by introducing you, or re-introducing some of you to a great New Wave/Power Pop band out of Atlanta, GA called The Producers.

The band released two albums on Portrait Records in the early eighties. The debut album was self-titled and was released in 1981. The follow-up, You Make the Heat came out in 82. She Sheila from that album went to #48 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart.

Although the band never hit the top 40, they did have success on an upstart cable channel that also premiered in 1981. Music videos for She Sheila, What’s He Got and a few other songs got airtime on MTV in the very early days of that station. They also appeared on MTV’s New Year’s Rockin Eve in 1982.

The band was dropped from Portrait Records after the second album. They released a third album on an indie label but was back to the major leagues with MCA for their fourth album, Coelacanth. Before that album was released, the band was let go from MCA as part of a label purge in 1989.

The Producers “retired” in 1991, but they still get back together for shows every once in a while. If they come to your town, check them out for sure. They were a band that created great music and every New Wave and Power Pop fan should know who they are and know their music. Take a few minutes and watch the videos below and we think you will agree with us!

Music, TV

New Wave Theater

In June of 1981, a few months before the premiere of MTV, The USA Network started airing a late-night weekend variety show called Night Flight. The show featured music videos, cult and B movies, music-themed documentaries, animation, stand up comedy and a program that is now somewhat legendary among the early shows of cable, New Wave Theater.

Originally airing on KSCI in Los Angeles, the show featured LA-based New Wave, Punk and underground bands and artists. Well known acts such as X, The Blasters, Fear, The Circle Jerks, 45 Grave, and The Dead Kennedys appeared on the show. It was hosted by musician and songwriter Peter Ivers.

New Wave Theater usually aired during the last hour block of Night Flight. With that late time slot, Iver’s offbeat monologues, and the public access look about the program, you truly did get a feeling that this was underground television being piped into homes all across the nation via this new thing called cable tv. It truly brought the LA alternative scene to folks who previously could only read about it in music magazines.

Sadly the show came to an end with the death of Peter Ivers. He was found bludgeoned to death in his apartment on March 3, 1983. The case remains unsolved to this day.

New Wave Theater lives on at the Night Flight plus website: https://www.nightflightplus.com/

Music

THE CARS (1978)

When music historians and writers talk about the history of New Wave, the mid-seventies scene at CBGB’s night club in New York will always come up. Bands like Talking Heads, Television and Blondie will always be mentioned, and rightfully so. Some will even go back further and bring up names like The Velvet Underground, The Modern Lovers, and The New York Dolls. Anytime you talk about the history of New Wave it should be mandatory that you also have to talk about the first album from The Cars which was released on June 6, 1978.

The band and legendary producer Roy Thomas Baker created a masterpiece that fused rock, pop and synthesizers that perhaps more so than any other record set the tone for the early 80’s new wave heyday. The self-titled debut featured three singles, two of which hit the top forty. All three songs, while never going any higher than #27 on the singles charts in America all became classics. Just what I needed, My Best Friend’s Girl and Good Times Roll have never left the airwaves becoming staples of album-oriented and classic rock radio.

Three other songs, You’re All I Got Tonight, Moving in Stereo, and Bye Bye Love, while never being released as singles also became mainstays on rock radio. The eighties classic film Fast Times at Ridgemont High featured Moving in Stereo in a memorable scene featuring Phoebe Cates and Judge Reinhardt. The album went on to become six times platinum.

The Cars should be in the mix of every true New Wave fans music collection. The album was ahead of its time then and still sounds fresh forty-one years later.

Music, TV

Jeopardy

Flashback Friday Music Video.

For the month of October, all of our Flashback Friday Music Videos will be horror-themed. Today’s video is a true MTV classic, it’s Jeopardy by The Greg Kihn Band from 1983

Jeopardy went as high as #2 on the singles chart and was kept from the top spot by Michael Jackson’s Beat it. Along with Jackson’s Thriller, which also featured Zombies, it’s one of the best know music videos of the 80’s that had a horror theme. It was the band’s only top 10 hit on the singles chat. 

The following year, Weird Al Yankovic released a paraody of the song called I lost on Jeopardy, which featured a cameo by Greg Kihn. 

Film

Silver Bullet (1985)

During Halloween season folks are often looking for scary movies to watch. When it comes to movies made in the Gen X era, we all know about Jason, Freddie, and Michael. They ushered in the modern era of horror and their names are right up there with Dracula, The Wolfman, and Frankenstein as the greatest characters in the history of the genre.

While the Friday the 13thNightmare on Elm Street, and Halloween franchises will always reign supreme in Gen X horror, there were plenty of other movies made during the era. With this in mind, for the rest of October, we have decided to introduce, or re-introduce to you some scary movies of our generation that you might have missed or just forgotten about.

Today’s movie is Silver Bullet from 1985. The film starred Corey Haim, Gary Busey, and Everett McGill. The story was based on the Stephen King novella, Cycle of the Werewolf. King actually wrote the screenplay as well. The story is set in a small town in Maine where murders start happening every time there is a full moon. The film is narrated by Jane, who as a teenager along with her paraplegic brother Marty discover that it is a Werewolf who is doing the killing and they also find out the identity of the human who turns into the creature. The adult voice of Jane is provided by Tovah Feldshuh who later went on to play a former congresswoman and leader of Alexandria on The Walking Dead.

When it comes to werewolf movies of the ’80s, An American Werewolf in London and The Howling are probably what comes to mind first. While Silver Bullet is sometimes forgotten in the mix, it was a modest hit that received mixed reviews.

If you are a fan of werewolf movies of 80’s, movies based on Stephen King’s writings and flicks starring Cory Haim, then you definitely need to check out this film.

Film, Music

Dream Warriors

Flashback Friday Music Video.

For the month of October, all of our Flashback Friday Music Videos will be horror-themed. Today’s video is Dream Warriors by Dokken.

The song appears on the band’s fourth album, Back for the Attack. It is also featured in the film, A Nightmare on Elm Street #3: Dream Warriors. The song hit # 22 on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks. The video features a young Patrica Arquette as well as Robert Englund portraying Freddie Kruger.

Film

JENNIFER (1978)

During Halloween season folks are often looking for scary movies to watch. When it comes to movies made in the Gen X era, we all know about Jason, Freddie, and Michael. They ushered in the modern era of horror and their names are right up there with Dracula, The Wolfman, and Frankenstein as the greatest characters in the history of the genre.

While the Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, and Halloween franchises will always reign supreme in Gen X horror, there were plenty of other movies made during the era. With this in mind, for the rest of October, we have decided to introduce, or re-introduce to you some scary movies of our generation that you might have missed or just forgotten about.

The first one up is Jennifer from 1978. This is the story of a snake-handling girl from West Virginia who moves to a big city and gets a scholarship to an elite private school for girls. Of course, the snobs at the school are cruel to her because she is poor and from Appalachia. Jennifer doesn’t just have the ability to handle serpents, she can control them with her mind and she lets loose with that power on her enemies after they go too far one too many times with their cruelty.

The film stars Lisa Pelikan in the title role and also features game show host, Bert Convy as a sympathetic teacher at the school. Jennifer was, of course, compared to Carrie which came out a few years before. While the film is no Carrie, it’s a good effective low budget movie that will be fun to watch for first wave Gen Xers to look back on the time when they were teenagers or the period right before they became high schoolers. It’s definitely worth watching now and should have been a bigger hit when released back in the day.

Music

Joan Crawford by Blue Oyster Cult.

Flashback Friday Music Video.

For the month of October, all of our Flashback Friday Music Videos will be horror-themed. Today’s video is Joan Crawford by Blue Oyster Cult.

The song appeared on the band’s 1981 gold album, Fire of Unknown Origin. That album also featured Burning For You, the band’s last top 40 hit. Joan Crawford went to #49 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock chart. The video was banned by MTV because of a “suggestive” scene.

Music

Think I’m In Love

Flashback Friday Music Video.

For the month of October, all of our Flashback Friday Music Videos will be horror-themed. In honor of Eddie Money who recently passed away, our first horror music video will be Think I’m in Love.

The song appeared on Money’s platinum 1982 album, No Control. It went to #16 on the singles chart and was Money’s first Top 40 hit since 1979. It also went to #1 on Billboard’s Top Rocks Tracks.

The music video was a favorite on MTV during its very early years and featured Money as a Count Dracula type character.

Music

LOVE IS by Alannah Myles

Flashback Friday Music Video

Last month, every Flashback Friday Music Video was from the late seventies or early eighties, so this month we will focus on the late eighties and early nineties. The video this week is Love is by Alannah Myles.

The song is from Myles’ 6x platinum self-titled debut album which was released in December of 1989. In her native Canada, it was the lead single, but everywhere else it was the follow up to her huge worldwide hit, Black Velvet. In America, the song peaked at #36 in 1990. It was a top twenty hit in Canada and Australia.

Love Is was the 2nd and last top forty hit for Myles in America. In Canada, she had ten songs hit the top forty on the pop and adult contemporary charts including two #1 hits. Her signature song, Black Velvet, only went to #10 in Canada.