Back in 1988, the members of the University of Southern California chapter of Chi Phi Fraternity put together a promotional rap video to attract new members to their fraternity’s ranks. The vid, set to a funky original track, includes a multi-part rap about colors (!) and a lot of pretty awesome dancing. We’re particularly fervent fans of Ricky Z., the suspender-ed, long-haired main rapper who explains that “people say that I’m slow/why/’cause I’m high, but they don’t know.” Plus, we’re really digging the cameo from a really, really archaic old computer terminal. Basically, I’ve watched this video about 10 times now, and I’m hoping to memorize the rap so they’ll let me rush their frat. I think I have a good chance of getting in; my sweatshirt game is pretty tight. [Weird Dude Energy]
Tag Archives: 80s
Talk shows in the ’80s and early ’90s were obsessed with sussing out the latest subculture and parading it on display for the entire world to gawk at. Whether goth, punk, club kid or something in between, shows like Phil Donahue, Maury Povitch and Ricki Lake steadily trotted out what they considered “freaks.” Take this clip of a crew of (actually very notable) punk rockers who appeared on “The Morning Show” with Regis and Kathie Lee in 1986. Among them was Raymond “Raybeez” Barbieri, founding member of the Lower East Side punk band Warzone, and Todd Youth, of the band Murphy’s Law (who later played with Danzing). These guys are so cute, but Kathie Lee is terrified.
Every generation has its own version of rebellion — so when club kids came around a decade later, flaunting looks and music that was the diametric opposite of punk, nobody should have been surprised. But talk show pundits ate that up. Just like they did a few years later when Marilyn Manson’s brand of manufactured goth horror came into its own.
Looking back at those kids, and those shows now, they seem delightfully tame. Check out a small collection of some of the best moments of punk rock, parental outrage, club kid mayhem and Manson fanaticism ever captured on the talk show circuit. Keep reading »
Back in August when I was in London for the Olympics, my friends and I were treated to a special tour of the Victoria & Albert’s collection of British evening gowns,worn by Queen Elizabeth to Princess Diana and beyond. The museum just announced their latest fashion-y exhibition, titled Club to Catwalk, which will explore the explosive fashion of the ’80s. The show promises to include everything from original club kid Leigh Bowery’s singular creations to the work of designers like John Galliano (whose suit from the collection is pictured), Vivienne Westwood and Katherine Hamnett. Curator Claire Wilcox is also hoping to include a collection of one-off custom denim jackets that were originally created as part of a V&A collaboration in the ’80s. They’ve already found several of the original jackets, including ones created by Zandra Rhodes, Paul Smith, Jasper Conran, Betty Jackson and Jean Muir, but are still looking for others from group.
Whoa guys, how come nobody ever told me about Fancy? I consider myself something of a connoisseur of crappy ’80s bands, and somehow I have totally missed Fancy, which is the brainchild of German songwriter and fabulous man Manfred Alois Perilano. This 1984 video features a high-class chick being driven through a barren wasteland, followed by creepy Mr. Perilano, who sings, “I’m like a cake that wants to be baked/ I’m like a pie made for hungry guys.” So yes, of course I love it.
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Coffee! It’s the completely safe stimulant of choice of marathon runners, football players … and the band Heart. This totally bizarre ’80s commercial from the National Coffee Association tries to convince us that rockers were mainlining coffee, not cocaine, before shows. As if! “Because coffee gives you the serenity to dream it, and the vitality to do it!” Um, sure, whatever you say weirdos. [YouTube]
Florence + the Machine‘s cover of “Addicted to Love” has been a regular on, oh, pretty much every mix CD I’ve made in the past six months. Something about Florence Welch’s voice just turns this classic ’80s track inside out. And then today, PopWrap posted a photo showing Florence in front of the iconic Robert Palmer girls. It’s not just a Photoshop job—the women are still in black with red lips and white guitars, but their styling has been updated for 2010, complete with Snooki poufs and strapless dresses. Which leads me to think: maybe a video is in the works for the Florence version? I am crossing my fingers that this is the case. After the jump, the original “Addicted to Love” video. Just because. Keep reading »
The thing about fashion comebacks is that they’re always fleeting and transitory—after all, causing change is as easy as taking off your clothes. This is a good thing, for if we were forced to wear the same scrunchie and acid wash jeans for weeks at a time, we’d ensure the demise of civilized society as we know it. This is why hair comebacks are all the more frightening: commitment. At least for a few months, until you can re-grow your hair.
It would seem that now folks are lining up to bring back The Fade, a hip-hop-influenced hairstyle, often embellished with personal, shaved designs and once popularized by the likes of DJ Jazzy Jeff and Salt-N-Pepa. According to The New York Times, “the so-called retro kids are going back to the styles of the ’80s, this time adding more intricate patterns than were ever seen then, more startling neon colors and patterns …” Some consider the style to be closer to art than anything else, and the barber who executes it has to have a creative hand. Says one stylist, “I draw some of the designs on paper but when I’m doing the actual hair, it’s just a flow.”
We are forever looking for ways to make working out less painfully boring, but we must begrudgingly admit that V magazine and Jessica Stam beat us to the punch with their new workout spread. Somehow, we neglected to realize that evening gowns, stilettos, neon wrist bands and sky high ponytails were the way to jazz up our gym routines. And while one might think that leather leggings wouldn’t allow for all that much breathing, Stam looks perfectly content in the photoshoot, so we’re inclined to believe that Rachel Zoe, the shoot’s stylist, found a solution. [Modelinia] Keep reading »
I once found myself in an elevator with Paula Abdul. And we got it on.
But she did say that she loved my dress. And boots. It’s not exactly a claim to fame, given that the girl looked all sorts of sloppy and sad with loads of makeup and weird pirate hooker boots. As she teetered out of the elevator a few floors below me, I couldn’t help but feel a twinge of sadness at the sight of her in that silly red coat carrying a tacky leopard-print bag. Clearly, her good days are few and far between of late, and we have to wonder what her fate will be now that she’s bailed on Idol.
But running across the video from her ’80s hit “Straight Up” the other day reminded me of a time when Paula wasn’t the hot mess that she is now. In fact, she looked kind of bangin’ and got us thinking about stealing her style. Here’s how we’d do it: Keep reading »