Eight Track Tapes

Eight-Track Tapes

By today’s standards, where the world is filled with portable music emanating from iPods, the eight-track tape seems rather (click) antiquated. Big and bulky, the endlessly-looping tape contained within also had this annoying habit of (click) interrupting songs midway through with an audible click as they moved through each of their quadrants. Furthermore, the intended order of songs was often disrupted, and occasionally (click) long periods of silence lingered between tracks. Having said that, they allowed, for the first time, the ability to bring music of one’s choice into (click) an automobile, as well as a portable listening device – something previously impossible. Continue reading...

Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar

The 70s were dominated by hard rocking boys and their guitars so it was always nice to find a gal holding her own in the male-dominated music industry. Pat Benatar was not only a lone female in a sea of testosterone, but she also had one of the best voices to ever grace the charts. Continue reading...

The Supremes

The Supremes

It is impossible to discuss the impact of girl groups on popular music without mention of The Supremes. They weren’t the first, but they enjoyed a popularity that put them firmly in a league of their own. With angelic harmonies backing the immense talent of lead vocalist Diana Ross, and accentuated by highly-polished choreography, their presence was felt by way of twelve #1 hits during their brief existence in the 60s. They would help to break down the barriers that African-American artists of the day faced and their immense popularity would catapult Diana Ross into super-stardom. Continue reading...

Tiny Tim

Tiny Tim

The words “one-of-a-kind” get thrown around quite a bit, but they were perhaps never more appropriate than when used to describe a gentle soul named Tiny Tim. He captivated and amused the world with his inimitable falsetto voice, quirky wardrobe and ever-present ukulele. His appeal landed him an enormously successful Top-20 single, one that would forever be linked to the offbeat performer. Continue reading...

We are the World

We Are the World

In the late evening on January 28, 1986, a collective group of some of the most recognized musical artists in the world left the American Music Awards festivities and congregated under a shroud of secrecy at A&M studios in Hollywood. The result of this unparalleled collaborative effort was “We Are the World,” a song written to raise money for the victims of famine in Africa. The resulting single, released on March 7th of the same year, would go on to sell 20 million copies, raising significant money for the cause and becoming one of the best remembered songs of the 80s. Continue reading...

Bob Marley

Bob Marley

Once called “the first Third World superstar”, Bob Marley was a visionary who introduced the world to the sounds of Jamaican reggae music. Charismatic, controversial and a gifted songwriter and lyricist, Marley and his group, The Wailers, left a legacy of music that has far outlived his brief time on the planet, and continues to flourish throughout the world. Continue reading...

Styx

Styx

The emergence of “arena rock” in the late 70s, saw the rise of a number of bands that seemingly went from being completely unknown to filling stadiums overflowing with adoring fans. Perhaps one of the most successful in this genre was a group of five Chicago-based rockers who called themselves Styx. Talk about coming out swinging; the band would land four consecutive double platinum albums, the first band ever to do so, and quickly prove they were a force to be reckoned with. Continue reading...

Saturday Night Fever

Saturday Night Fever

The term “ground zero” describes a point where an explosion occurs. Concerning the explosion of the disco era, few would argue that the catalyst was the 1977 blockbuster film, Saturday Night Fever. Cross-marketed with a musical soundtrack that is still considered one of the most successful of all-time, the film managed to send a significant portion of the population to the nearest dance floor, to boogie the night away just like the film’s character, Tony Manero. It also marked the film debut of America’s favorite sweathog, John Travolta, whose slick dance moves were soon imitated in every disco in America. For better or worse, the disco era had arrived. Continue reading...