Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Spin Magazine (1985)

Good morning!

I am damn near dead, friends-- it took everything I had to stay awake long enough to view the progression of the Ant Army march through their paces last night, and whatever I had left was taken from me à cause de sleeplessness after I DID get home last night.

However! I learned some things:

  1. Adam Ant fans are predominantly in their mid to late forties, look nothing like you would think they would, and come out in droves for live shows.
  2. They know EVERY. WORD. TO EVERY. B SIDE. AND EVERYTHING. IN BETWEEN. There was a guy behind me last night who was almost like a teleprompter, down to every "ooh" and "WAH-oh". I felt whatever the lyrical knowledge equivalent is to woefully underdressed. Do you know how rare a sensation that is to either me or Kelsey, being music nerds to our core?!
  3. Highlights of Kelsey in-show conversation: 
    1. K: "How does it feel to be a CASUAL Adam Ant fan? Because we're the only ones here."
    2. K: "Do you think Adam Ant may be like the Dread Pirate Roberts? Do you think they just pass the hussar's jacket on to whoever and then THEY'RE Adam Ant? Because that does not look like Adam Ant."
    3. L: "How many more songs can he even have?" K: "He's been playing for an hour and a half. Solid." L: "And yet none of them are 'Goody Two Shoes'." ((the first bars of "Goody Two Shoes" start at this moment))
    4. L: "Do you think the girl drummer's hair is a wig?" K: "Almost definitely." L: "I want that wig."
    5. L: In response to the song "Wonderful", "Do you think this is their 'This Must Be the Place'?"
  4. Adam Ant used to live in Tennessee? He mentioned it in the concert last night and again in this interview: "I lived in Tennessee for a couple of years," Adam recalls. "And after a while I started to think about music. I missed it, the creative process and the live side of it." He LIVED in Tennessee! Can you imagine seeing him at Walgreens and not realizing it was him? It might have happened!
I could go on for days, but we have the pressing business of Tuesday's blog. Continuing with this week's 80's-centric music theme, did you know Spin magazine goes back to 1985 on Google books? It's true!

The very first issue features a Material Girl era Madge on the cover, beauty mark, full-eyebrows, highlighted hair and all! 

I used to collect old Rolling Stones from the seventies', eighties', and nineties' back in my teens-- in the pre-internet era, this was the most information I was going to get on bygone acts that were as current to me as if they'd released their first single two days, instead of two decades ago. It's interesting because I always think about Spin as a slightly hipper-than-thou, skinny on content version of tried-and-true RS. However! Reading from the inaugural issue here has been an eye-opener. Besides the dead-on contemporaneous record reviews, there are interview features and op-eds on things that are RIGHT. UP. MY. ALLEY. So maybe right up yours as well!

The June 1985 issue, for example, features Talking Heads in a cover story, hot off the heels of their Little Creatures release the same month ("And She Was" and "Road to Nowhere" are both on this record). The article itself was co-written by Glenn O'Brien, currently GQ's "Style Guy" columnist, former editor of Andy Warhol's Interview magazine, creator of the late 70s/early 80s cult public access show "TV Party". Also, personal hero of mine. I AM IMPRESSED.

Another article by O'Brien in the same issue delves into the state of Calypso music in its country of origin, Trinidad. There's an interview with Billy Joel about whether or not he's relevant in year of our Lord 1985:

There's an article on the origins and actors in Jim Jarmusch's seminal Stranger than Paradise, released that year; a profile of underground record stores; a column by producer Nile Rogers (the guy behind "Le Freak", "Let's Dance", AND Daft Punk's 2013 hit "Get Lucky"...the man is a legend) about the car stereo in his Maserati Bora (which apparently looks like this, for you fellow non-gear-heads). There's a profile of the Smiths and specifically Morrissey towards the back of this same issue. WHAT. IS NOT. TO LOVE. ABOUT 1980'S. SPIN MAGAZINE.

Oh, and besides all the street cred? How about these mid-eighties' tastic advertisements? You look, I can't, they're too perfect:

I even found two that combine both music AND commercialism. People, Daryl Hall and John Oates for Pontiac Fiero:

 And even MORE surprisingly, Lou Reed (LOU REED) for Honda. I am speechless:

So! Have you made any staggering online treasure trove discoveries lately? What eighties' act would you most like to see in concert in this modern age? How crazy is it to see Lou Reed shilling for Honda (I wonder if he got a bike out of the deal)? Let's talk!

I gotta get my sleep deprived self focused on work, but go check out Spin magazine's online archive on Google books, I guarantee you will find something you like.

That's all for today! See you tomorrow.

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