Thursday, March 31, 2011

Ladies of the 80s: Susanna Hoffs

Today I got a special request to do a Ladies of the 80s feature again, and I will greatly oblige with the 2nd hottest girl group lead singer of the decade.

Oh, Susanna Hoffs. Where do I begin? As good a place as any would be the look you gave in the 'Walk Like an Egyptian' video (as shown in the photo accompanying this piece). Those gigantic doe eyes, looking around sort of scared like, made even a five year old Jake put down his G.I. Joes in awe. Sure the song pretty much sucks (I mean, why are the party boys calling the Kremlin exactly?) but the peepers that take up 62% of your head more than make up for it.

While doing a Google Image search for my "research" for this article, I came across many a screen shot for the scene Miss Hoffs did in some movie called The All Nighter. Seeing as how this is a family blog, I will not publish them and will instead suggest the readers search them out themselves. They will not dissappoint.

Much like the last Lady of the 80s Belinda Carlisle, I also dug on some of the Bangles jams. 'Hero Takes A Fall' is the jangle pop confection that got Symbolina to write songs for the group, and it is totally serviceable 80s Modern Rock. 'Manic Monday' never dissapoints, even though NBC playing this song during Super Bowl XXIII coverage made me think the Niners were playing the Cincinatti Bangles.

The real cream of the crop is 'Eternal Flame' though. For some reason, this song actually made a college mix of mine between Wire's '12XU' and some song by Our Lady Peace. Still to this day when it comes on random on the JakePod, it never gets skipped, and I usually do some seriously flamboyant hand motions while singing it in the car. Strangely, it captures the emotion of longing for me much more poignantly than more serious songs. Maybe it's the tone of the song, or the lyrics. Or maybe it's due to the fact that Susanna Hoffs is a smokin hot piece of ass. I'm not totally sure. All I know is that I totally carry an eternal flame for this lady from the 80s.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

KDWB in 1995

I am a huge sucker for nostalgia. I'm not sure why...I just like things from the past better. It's not that I believe in the whole "things were so much better then" credo, it's just my bag, baby. This particularly pertains to radio. Which is why I love this little baby I stumbled across today so much:

Yes, 45 minutes of KDWB from my 7th grade summer. The label is wrong, I am positive this tape is from 1995 due to the songs ("Waterfalls" and the "Total Eclipse of the Heart" cover both were massive hits around June/July 1995) and the movies (I remember being really really AMPED to see Congo at the Brookdale 8 that summer).

What stands out to me (besides the fact that Dave Ryan is still the fucking morning DJ 16 years later) is the amount of old tunes the station played. And they were ballads. "More Than Words" charted at #1 in 1991 and "Right Here Waiting" in 1989. Today you rarely ever hear a song older than two or three years on the radio. I think some of it was that KDWB leaned much more rock in the early 90s. I distinctly remember hearing "Disarm" by the Smashing Pumpkins on the station regularly, and that wasn't even a top 40 hit.

Oh, and the ads are priceless. What ever happened to Sidewalk Sales anyways? And when the hell was there a rock club over on 26th and 26th in MPLS? I would have totally paid 10 bucks to see Firehouse near the height of their powers.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Songs I'm Embarassed to Own Volume II: Underneath Your Clothes'

Deep at heart, I am a sexist pig. Well, sometimes not even deep at heart. When it comes to my music, I usually don't hold female artists in the same regard as male artists. It's awful, but I usually like a woman's music more if I want to fuck them.

This artist is no different.

Shakira exploded onto the scene right around 9/11, shaking her Colombian/Persian hips all over the MTV and VH1 late night video shows a semi-employed and out of school Jake Eickholt was watching. And I liked that. In fact, I may have "liked" it to her video for 'Whenever, Wherever' a few times. But that is not why we are here today.

Miss Shakira's next top ten single (and her last for almost five years) was the incomprehensable ditty 'Underneath Your Clothes'. With lines like "You're a song/written by the hand of God" and "I love you more than all that's on the planet/Movin', Walkin', Talkin', Breathin'" you can tell this wasn't written by Dylan (or even the dudes who wrote Milli Vanilli's shit).

Yet still, Shakira delivers a command performance. I have heard that her mix of rock and pop made her a sensation in Latin speaking countries, and I can see it in 'Underneath'. I will admit it...this song kind of rocks. Check out the breakdown where Shakira makes like Axl Rose and gets straight up 'Nighttrain' on the bitch. And the Kermit the Frog honking somehow works with the Mom Rock acousitc guitar going on throughout the song. I'm ashamed to say it, but if this comes on the iPod or at the doctors office, I want to sing along at the top of my English As a First Language lungs.

So there you have it. Would I like 'Underneath Your Clothes' if it was sung by, say, the fat chick from The Donnas? Possibly. I do like some songs by less than attractive chicks ('Rolling in the Deep' by Adele comes to mind, as does 'Me and Bobby McGee' by Overrated Ass Janis Joplin). But sometimes the prettiest present under the tree gets picked first.