Kevin Bacon is one of my favorite actors of all time because he never takes himself too seriously and, let’s face it, he’s still adorable. Millennials, sit back and enjoy as Kevin takes us on a nostalgic journey to the ’80s and tells us about a life before the invention of “Ok Twindr.” [22 Words]
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]
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]