History in the 80s
Describe entertainment and music from the 80s: The 80s had a very distinct personality to its pop culture phenomena. It was in the 80s that we saw the first mass explosion of hysteria for new toys, with the 1983 winter shortage of Cabbage Patch Dolls. One of the biggest pop culture crazes of its times, the individually named and crafted Cabbage Patch Dolls join the ranks of the dolls of each decade, reflecting the eternal power of the doll.
Trivial Pursuit, a response to a few decades of mass information and the development of world wide pop culture, also appeared in 1983 and remains today as an after dinner favorite to show off all that Jeopardy worthy information you keep locked away. Flash forward a few years, and the electronic toy age kicks into gear with the introduction of hundreds of new toys that could talk, move about and imitate favorite cartoon characters. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles hit it big at the end of the decade, unleashing a blitzkrieg of marketing on the nation, and other 80s favorites followed with shows like Transformers or He-Man.
The “action figure” craze started by GI Joes in the 60s exploded. Soon, Nintendo kicked off the home video game console era (after a failed start by Atari) and toys were not only complex, but incredibly expensive. ·John Lennon is shot outside his New York apartment ·MTV (Music Television) is launched ·The Simpsons Is First Seen On Tracey Ullman Show April 5th 1987 ·Michael Jackson releases his second adult solo album, Thriller. Some of the Most Well Known Movie Stars of the Eighties Clint Eastwood Burt Reynolds Harrison Ford Michael J Fox Eddie Murphy Tom Cruise Dudley Moore Arnold Schwarzenegger Popular Musicians ·Bucks Fizz The Jam ·Olivia Newton-John ·Chicago ·Lionel Richie ·ABBA ·Black Sabbath ·Queen ·The Police ·Tina Turner ·David Bowie ·Whitney Houston ·Culture Club ·Bruce Springsteen ·U2 Television During the 1980s The 1980s was an important decade in the television industry. Not only were great strides made in the way of “pushing the envelope” with shows like Married…With Children, but other programs displayed a stark contrast with family-friendly issues and themes. The Cosby Show began in the mid-1980s and it enjoyed several years as the #1 television program because it was a witty and realistic rendering of family life during the era.
It also destroyed the stereotype of poor African-American families that shows in the past only helped to reinforce. Heathcliff Huxtable – the father on The Cosby Show – was an obstetrician while his wife – Claire – was a successful lawyer. The 1980s also saw the creation of a number of cable networks that viewers still enjoy today. The Weather Channel – based in Atlanta, GA – premiered in 1982 as a cable network that covered the weather 24 hours a day. The Cable News Network, better known as CNN, was also created as television’s first 24-hour news network.
It created a trend and today you have the option of several 24-hour cable news networks to choose from. Rupert Murdoch also created the Fox Network in the 1980s as a challenge to the only three major networks at the time – NBC, CBS, and ABC. Even though many people scoffed at the idea of Fox being a major competitor, it has since created several popular and award-winning shows in its more than 20 year existence. Music Television (MTV) was also a major breakthrough network in the 1980s and today viewers can choose from a large number of music-based television channels.
Other shows that began in the 1980s that are still memorable and popular today include Cheers, The Golden Girls, Miami Vice, and Family Ties. Along with The Simpsons, many of these programs are available as DVD box sets for those who lived through the era and want to experience a feeling of nostalgia by experiencing these shows again The musical era of the 1980s Like many other decades, the 1980s was a decade where music was a way to chronicle the times and events of the era. In some ways, the musical genres during the 1980s redefined the way many bands and artists made new music and it still continues to influence music today.
Many of the musicians during the 1980s have maintained staying power and are still popular today. Other artists enjoyed a modicum of success during the decade and they are not even widely recognized today, save for the television programs that strive to reunite the bands and give exposure to artists of the time. Following is some descriptions and explanations of the bands and interests that helped to change the face of music in the 80s. MTV, or Music Television, may have been the single most influential entity in music industry during the 1980s .
Premiering in 1981, MTV gave bands and artists greater exposure for their music in a greater and more widely popular medium. The first video ever played on MTV was aptly titled “Video Killed the Radio Star” by the Buggles. Duran Duran is one of the more popular 80s bands that enjoyed the exposure that MTV gave them, too. Many experts have said that MTV is what made Duran Duran one of the most popular bands to come out of the 1980s era. New Wave and Synthpop was another genre of music that came about during this era.
This form held on to many of the attributes of the popular Punk Rock genre coming out of the 1970s, but it had different characteristics. While the Punk Rock of the 1970s was a retaliation against the government and the “establishment,” the New Wave and Synthpop forms were meant to be anti-corporation in a more experimental sense, both melodically and lyrically. These genres were so closely tied that they are often just lumped into the category of New Wave, but it influenced an entire generation of music fans with its poppy sound and intricate lyrics.
Bands like The Police, the B-52’s, and Duran Duran are recognizable names that fit into this category of 1980s music. The 1980s era also enjoyed a harder style of music. Good ol’ Rock ‘n Roll was a main staple of the 80s music. Popular rock bands like Van Halen, Def Leppard, and Aerosmith pumped out the decibels to the enjoyment of thousands, if not millions, of fans. It was also an era of a genre deemed Glam Rock. This included bands like Motley Crue, Poison, and other bands that were known for wild hair, tons of hairspray, and flashy stage outfits.
Band members were also known for promiscuity and some bands, such as Twisted Sister, wore makeup as a form of shock and rebellion against the strict culture of the times. The 1980s also saw the formation of a harder type of rock and metal, called Thrash Metal. Bands like Metallica, Megadeth, and Slayer created electrifying guitar riffs and headbanging beats that could only be enjoyed at maximum volume. Although the music from the 1980s had their share of one-hit wonders, many artists have continued to persevere and enjoy a great deal of success.
Artists like Michael Jackson, Madonna, and Phil Collins gained popularity in the 1980s and have been popular since that era. Other musicians, including Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp, and Bon Jovi are still creating best-selling albums and sellout concerts that are popular among young and old alike. Concert charity events were also popular during this decade including Live Aid in 1985 . The world was concerned about famine and other socio-political issues happening across the globe at the time and the music industry decided to respond.
As a result, millions of dollars were raised to combat these social issues. USA for Africa was possibly the most memorable charity concert. Dozens of artists contributed to this project as well as the signature song – “We Are the World” – and raised millions of dollars to help relieve hunger in Ethiopia. Band Aid was another concert aimed at a purpose – to bring awareness to the general public about AIDS as well as the proliferation and imminent dangers of nuclear war. At the time, the Cold War between the United States and the USSR was a major issue on the minds of the people in the world.
Music The most popular music in the 80s was pop music. To give you an idea, here is the top 40 chart in 1980-1981: 1. Call Me – Blondie 2. Another Brick In The Wall – Pink Floyd 3. Magic – Olivia Newton-John 4. Rock With You – Michael Jackson 5. Do That To Me One More Time – Captain & Tennille 6. Crazy Little Thing Called Love – Queen 7. Coming Up – Paul McCartney 8. Funkytown – Lipps Inc. 9. It’s Still Rock And Roll To Me – Billy Joel 10. The Rose – Bette Midler 11. Escape (The Pina Colada Song) – Rupert Holmes 12. Cars – Gary Numan 13. Cruisin’ – Smokey Robinson 14.
Working My Way Back To You-Forgive Me Girl – Spinners 15. Lost In Love – Air Supply 16. Little Jeannie – Elton John 17. Ride Like The Wind – Cristopher Cross 18. Upside Down – Diana Ross 19. Please Don’t Go – K. C. & The Sunshine Band 20. Babe – Styx 21. With You I’m Born Again – Billy Preston & Syreeta 22. Shining Star – Manhattans 23. Still – Commodores 24. Yes – I’m Ready – Teri De Sario With K. C. 25. Sexy Eyes – Dr. Hook 26. Steal Away – Robbie Dupree 27. Biggest Part Of Me – Ambrosia 28. This Is It – Kenny Loggins 29. Cupid-I’ve Loved You For A Long Time – Spinners 0. Let’s Get Serious – Jermaine Jackson 31. Don’t Fall In Love With A Dreamer – Kenny Rogers & Kim Carnes 32. Sailing – Christopher Cross 33. Longer – Dan Fogelberg 34. Coward Of The County – Kenny Rogers 35. Ladies Night – Kool & The Gang 36. Take Your Time – S. O. S. Band 37. No More Tears (Enough Is Enough) – Barbra Streisand & Donna Summer 38. Too Hot – Kool & The Gang 39. More Love – Kim Carnes 40. Pop Muzik – M One of the most influencial artists of the 80s was Madonna. Many subgenres of heavy metal developed during the 1980s, such as: Thrash metal
Metallica, one of the main thrash metal groupsIn a move away from metal’s hard rock roots, a genre that took influences from hardcore punk emerged in the 1980s — thrash metal. The genre’s sound was much more aggressive, louder and faster than the original metal bands or their glam metal contemporaries, and the guitar work was often more technically complex. This subgenre was popularized by the ‘Big Four Of Thrash’, Anthrax, Megadeth, Metallica, and Slayer, with bands like San Francisco’s Testament and Exodus, New Jersey’s Overkill and Brazil’s Sepultura also making an impact.
With the exception of Metallica, who sold consistently in the millions, during the 1980s, thrash was more underground in terms of sales and media coverage, compared to more popular subgenres. During the 1990s, sales of thrash improved and ‘death metal’ became incresingly popular. Power metal From the 1980s and into the 1990s power metal, especially in Europe, evolved in an opposite direction from death metal and thrash by keeping the speed, anti-commercial mentality and intensity of heavy metal but focusing on upbeat themes and melodies.
Power metal usually involves high pitched ‘clean singing’ similar to that of vocalists, such as Bruce Dickinson of Iron Maiden, as opposed to grunts. Traditional power metal bands such as Manowar and Hammerfall have a sound very close to classic heavy metal whilst more modern power metal bands such as Rhapsody of Fire, Kamelot and Symphony X often have a strong keyboard based symphonic influence, sometimes using orchestra and opera singers. Helloween in 1985 were the first example of European power metal. Closely related to power metal is progressive metal, a fusion of the progressive stylings of bands like Rush, King Crimson and heavy metal.
This style began in the ’80s, too, behind innovators like Fates Warning, Queensryche, and Dream Theater who enjoyed substantial mainstream acceptance and success in the glam metal era. Doom metal At a time when thrash ruled the metal underground, a new genre known as doom metal took the opposite approach. This began in the 1980s with such bands like Saint Vitus), Doom metal rejected the emphasis on speed, and slowed its music. The themes, style, and approach of the genre were indebted to Black Sabbath. Doom metal traces its roots back to early Black Sabbath albums.