Yep, I’m a child of the 80’s. I was a teenager through much of the 80’s, started high school, got my first job, first girlfriend – it all happened in that decade.
I remember watching the Live Aid concert. Michael Jackson. Madonna. Countdown on TV in Australia. Duran Duran. Aussie artists such as Cold Chisel, INXS, The Divinyls, The Angels and Australia Crawl.
It was an amazing decade and I feel quite privileged that it happened as I was growing up.
I grew up in Salisbury, a suburb in South Australia. I had the typical Aussie upbrining – Mum, Dad, older brother, dogs, cats and various other pets.
My dad played piano and I probably inherited my love for music from him. I started off playing classical piano and then one day I discovered rock music and decided I wanted to learn guitar. My parents agreed and said I could have lessons once I started high school.
I think I drove my parents nuts as I learnt to play songs like “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” and “Take Me Home Country Road”. It was hard to learn a new instrument but I kept at it and still play today.
Music was a big part of my life. My uncle and aunt gave me a small transistor radio when I was around 9 years old, and I used to listen to it at night as I lay in bed. I can remember hearing “Boogie Wonderland” and “Knock On Wood” and being blown away. It was the tail end of the disco era and I was discovering contemporary music for the first time. I’d watch Young Talent Time on TV and see kids of a similar age to me performing.
Music video shows started screening. In Australia there was Countdown at 6 pm Sunday night on channel 2. Here in Adelaide we also had Music Express and another show called Trax. FM radio was starting up and SSA-FM was the big FM station in Adelaide. A guy called Bill Page used to present a show called Rock Of The 80’s on a Sunday night and I’d listen to it.
Later in the 80’s MTV started up and bands discovered the power of a good video clip. Budgets for videos increased as the record companies discovered they were a great way to promote bands around the world.
Sony released the Walkman – take your music with you! I couldn’t afford a ‘real’ Sony Walkman but I did buy a cheaper copy for $19.99. I loved it! Can’t forget that George Benson video where he plays guitar on roller skates while listening to his Walkman.
Who remembers Blue Light Discos? Here in Adelaide the local police would organise discos for teenagers who were too young to get into clubs. They were designed to be a safe no-alcohol environment where kids could have fun. We used to go to the Elizabeth Blue Light Disco at the Octagon Theatre on Friday nights.
And the hair! I remember girls with their hair teased up. The mullet ruled supreme thanks to Bono! Cyndi Lauper came along and showed us that 80’s hair rocked. I was a big Cold Chisel fan and at the end of year 11 got my hair permed so I could look like a rock star. It’s kind of funny now.
The 80’s never quite went away. I know everyone thinks the decade they grew up in was special, but I’d argue that the 80’s were extra special. It was a time of unprecedented change – video games, video recorders, colour TV, changing music, movies, iconic TV programs – this decade has it all.
The idea for 80’s Music Guy came about as I was listening to some 80’s music one day. I realised that so many of the songs reminded me of certain times or events. Every song has a story – that became the tagline for the site.
So here I am, writing about the 80’s and sharing my memories of the most awesome decade.
If you love the 80’s you’re welcome here. Look around, read some articles, watch some videos – re-live your younger years.