Showing posts with label 1980. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 1980. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A strange planet, far away

I can't resist these old Bear Bryant Show clips. I can't.

It's just so, so, so . . . quintessentially the South of my youth. Only, back in the South of my youth, I'd have said "my limited vocabulary doesn't permit me to say" stuff like "quintessentially."

But there you go. One . . . two . . . three . . . take a swig off that Co' Cola and sing the praises of Golden Flake corn chips before Charlie Thornton falls silent to make way for the Bear's five minutes of pure stream of consciousness as the coach's cigarette sends clouds toward the ceiling from under the desk.

TODAY, kids would see this and take it for a Saturday Night Live skit. Children, I grew up in a Saturday Night Live skit.

And speaking of that 1979 LSU-Alabama game -- I was there. In the student section. It was miserable.

It was as miserable of a game as I ever stayed all the way through. It rained -- hard. It was cold . . . probably in the upper 30s. I remember huddling under some plastic sheeting that some folks abandoned when they gave up the Tiger Stadium ghost.

And I remember 'Bama winning on a last-minute field goal, the only score in the whole frigid, soggy affair.

Didn't even get any Golden Flake corn chips for my trouble. Or a Co' Cola.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Your Daily '80s: I wanna play fer yew, Bear

Even legends didn't win every week.

Here's a bit of Paul "Bear" Bryant's weekly Alabama football show from 1980. Y'all, this is self-evidently 30 years and a universe away from the world we inhabit today.

I don't know that today is any improvement.

By the way, I think we know what killed the Bear a couple of years after this show -- washing them chips down with Coca-Cola.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Your Daily '80s: America's Top 10

It's the end of summer and the beginning of fall in 1980.

What was at the top of the pops? Well, let's see here on America's Top 10.

Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.

He's Casey Kasem.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Your Daily '80s: You say goodbye, and I say. . . .

It was 30 years ago today, the world stopped to pray . . . and though I don't really want to stop the show, I thought that you might like to know that the singer's going to sing a song, and he wants you all to sing along:

All we are saying is give peace a chance. . . .

Saturday, December 11, 2010

This week's 3C&T playlist

Here's the playlist for this week's episode of
3 Chords & the Truth --
All those years ago.


Song Name




Lavender Road

The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger
(Sean Lennon/Charlotte Kemp Muhl)



Give Me Some Truth

John Lennon



Dust in the Wind




Livin' On A Prayer

Bon Jovi



(Just Like) Starting Over

John Lennon



Beyond the Great Divide

Emmylou Harris



The Afternoon: Forever Afternoon

The Moody Blues



Baby the Rain Must Fall

Glenn Yarbrough



Watching the Wheels

John Lennon



Here Comes The Sun




Look at Me

John Lennon



I'm Looking Through You




Looking for My Life

George Harrison



I Looked Away

Derek and the Dominoes



Look What You've Done




Hard Times Are Over

Yoko Ono



Helter Skelter




I Just Shot John Lennon

The Cranberries



Too Late for Goodbyes

Julian Lennon



A Woman Left Lonely

Janis Joplin & Full Tilt Boogie



Whatever Gets You Thru the Night

John Lennon



Mind Games

John Lennon




Sean Lennon



Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)

John Lennon


3 Chords & the Truth: All those years ago

They're funny, aren't they, those "zero" anniversaries?

You know, 10 years, 20 years, 30 years. . . .

Thirty years. Those "zero" anniversaries have a way of taking something that happened a long, long time ago and making it seem like it was just yesterday. Just as vivid as yesterday. Just as raw as yesterday.

JUST AS painful as it was yesterday, only in this case, "yesterday" was three decades ago.

That's what 3 Chords & the Truth is all about this week, what happened 30 years ago, and how it hurt us . . . how it changed us. This episode of the Big Show is a look back -- a meditation, actually.

It was 30 years ago Wednesday that a madman murdered John Lennon. I had some thoughts on that here. I have some musical thoughts on that awful day, and what it has meant to my generation, here.

FOR WHAT it's worth, I rather like the way George Harrison put it . . . "All Those Years Ago."
Hear them shouting all about love
While they treated you like a dog
When you were the one who had made it so clear
All those years ago.

Hear them talking all about how to give

They don't act with much honesty
But you point the way to the truth when you say
All you need is love.

Living with good and bad

I always looked up to you
Now we're left cold and sad
By someone the devil's best friend
Someone who offended all.

We're living in a bad dream

They've forgotten all about mankind
And you were the one they backed up to the wall
All those years ago
You were the one who Imagined it all
All those years ago.

Deep in the darkest night

I send out a prayer to you
Now in the world of light
Where the spirit free of the lies
And all else that we despised.

They've forgotten all about God

He's the only reason we exist
Yet you were the one that they said was so weird
All those years ago
You said it all though not many had ears
All those years ago

You had control of our smiles and our tears
All those years ago
IT'S 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Your Daily '80s: All the lonely people

The morning after, on Good Morning America.

It's 7 a.m., Dec. 9, 1980. Here's David Hartman.

Meanwhile, in the U.K. . . .

Hours after John Lennon's murder in New York, a shocked Great Britain sat down to watch this memorial on BBC 1's Nationwide program.

Roll the videotape. . . .

A terrible day in the life

I always heard these things in my bedroom in Baton Rouge -- news of shocking deaths in the dark of the night.

In 1978, I was in high school, up late and listening to the radio when I heard the pope was dead. A month and a half later, I was up late working on homework and listening to the radio --
WFMF -- when I heard a report that the pope was dead. I thought somebody had screwed up and put on an old newscast.

In 1980, I was a sophomore in college. The night of Dec. 8, I was up cramming for finals, listening to the radio. The DJ came on with the shocking bulletin -- John Lennon was dead, shot outside his apartment building in New York.
He read the news today . . . oh boy.

Oh, God, no.

Please, God, no.

The death
of the pope was big (as was the death of the other pope), but I wasn't Catholic then. The murder of John Lennon was shattering.

The pope was an old man in Rome. He was the vicar of Christ, but he was a distant one back then -- a guy you read about in the papers, or perhaps saw on the TV news once in a while.

John Lennon . . .
the Beatles . . . they had been a daily presence in my life -- a pervasive part of the culture in which I had marinated since the age of 3. John, Paul, George and Ringo were the soundtrack of my earthly existence.

IN 1964,
my Aunt Sybil and Uncle Jimmy gave me a copy of Meet the Beatles. I had me some Beatles singles, too.

In 1966, John told an interviewer the Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ, which arguably was true. Truth, however, is no defense against public indignation when veracity meets unpopularity -- people like funhouse-mirror images of themselves a lot better when everybody knows the mirror is all screwy and not him.

Then, John Lennon suddenly was a communist or something, and Mama busted up all my Beatles records. That's how we showed our esteem for the second person of the Holy Trinity back then, as opposed to going to church.

WHEN I was old enough to think for myself -- and to buy my own damned record albums -- the Beatles were back. Big time.

John was always the challenging Beatle. The one most likely to piss you off -- and to make you think. I rather like how he'd sometimes mess with your head, and it was funniest when people didn't get how funny it all was.

Like "Imagine." It's funny to see religious Republicans enthusiastically singing along with "Imagine," a song Lennon once described as "virtually the Communist Manifesto." (Well, OK. Not every Republican.)

We didn't always agree with this presence in our lives -- hell, we didn't always understand this musical fixture of ours -- but we always had to give him credit for honesty, just like we always had to give him credit for amazing songs. We couldn't not give him his due for the music of of our lives.

And now, Dec. 8, 1980, at about 10 o'clock at night. . . .

Suddenly, it was like the soundtrack of my life had been left sitting in the rear window of my '76 Vega. It had warped. It didn't sound right.

A constant presence wasn't, not anymore.

I heard the news 30 years ago today. Oh boy, nothing has been the same since. And it hurts.

Still, it hurts.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Your Daily '80s: Ain't dere no more

March 17, 1980. Broadcasting magazine. The Mutual Broadcasting System -- "The World's Largest Network" -- heralds its affiliation with 1050 WHN, New York City's only country station.

July 1, 1987. WHN drops country music, as well as its vintage call letters, to become sports-talk WFAN. In 1988, WFAN would move to 660 on the New York dial, ending the historic tenure of WNBC.

Aug. 31, 1998. Mutual's now-owners, Westwood One, shuts down the Mutual newsroom in Arlington, Va., merging its operations into that of its affiliated CBS Radio.

April 18, 1999. The last newscast under the Mutual name is aired.

May 7, 2002. New York's last country-music radio station, Y-107, changes format. New York has been without a country station since.

Sic transit gloria radio. Bee doop.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Your Daily '80s: With this ring

About this time in 1980, Broadcasting readers were getting sold on how a program about weddings and marriage could help radio stations rake in the advertising dollars.

Thirty years later, I would imagine With This Ring is just as obsolete as 39 percent of Americans think marriage is.

A society without marriage, or at least one where the institution is about as significant as the next Harry Potter movie? (Check that, less significant than the next Harry Potter movie.)

What could go wrong?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Your Daily '80s: Andy & Dave, 1980

Here's a little agit for the never-believer. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Here's a little ghost for the offering. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Here's a truck stop instead of St. Peter's. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Mr. Andy Kaufman's gone wrestling (wrestling bears).
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

Hey Andy, did you hear about this one? Tell me, are you locked in the punch?

Hey Andy, are you goofing on Elvis? Hey baby, are we losing touch?
If you believed they put a man on the moon, man on the moon
If you believe there's nothing up my sleeve, then nothing is cool

-- R.E.M., 1992

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Your Daily '80s: Before Late Night, mid-morning

Before there was
The Late Show with David Letterman, there was Late Night With David Letterman, and before there was Late Night With David Letterman, there was The David Letterman Show. Which wasn't on late at all.

It didn't run long, just from June to October of 1980, but you can see what was to come in a couple of years. Not to mention what Jay Leno would be stealing in another decade or so.

So, welcome back to Sept. 30, 1980. Today's featured guest, Steve Martin.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Your Daily '80s: Cold coffee. I blame Reagan.

Cold coffee.

Before Starbucks.

Came to Omaha.

The state of office coffee drinking, circa 1983, immortalized by University Television at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. The weekly TV show was called Cityscape; the music was by Citydog.

Welcome back to when Omaha was New Wave.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Your Daily '80s: Sic transit gloria television

Broadcasting magazine, Oct. 27, 1980 -- 30 years ago this week.

Phil Donahue and his syndicated TV show -- Donahue -- were huge. He was Oprah before Oprah was Oprah, only in a very male, Caucasian manner.

Now? Not so much.