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The 100 Greatest Songs of 1981 #1 Super Freak


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86. The Kinks “Destroyer” (from Give the People What They Want)  https://youtu.be/_WJ6FbcWYRU The Kinks were actually a pretty good 80s band, as Ray Davies still had some songwriting chops l

67. Journey “Stone In Love” (from Escape)  https://youtu.be/kFqXFE8OSG4 Sorry @wikkidpissah there’s going to be a few more standard type rockers coming up here. What can I say? They were big i

44. Stevie Nicks and Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” (from Bella Donna)  https://youtu.be/H5i7j0VhEHw The music to this song was written by Mike Campbell (l

2 minutes ago, Dr. Octopus said:

The opportunity to place one of many better songs onto the list in favor of a hackneyed cover song.

Ah. Well it won’t be the only cover. (Not even the only Tommy James cover!) 

But in any case I think it’s a pretty good song. Not great by any means but #91 seems about right. 

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1 minute ago, timschochet said:

Ah. Well it won’t be the only cover. (Not even the only Tommy James cover!) 

But in any case I think it’s a pretty good song. Not great by any means but #91 seems about right. 

Definitely better than that tom petty tune.

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21 minutes ago, timschochet said:

91. Billy Idol “Mony Mony” (from Don’t Stop

https://youtu.be/sYYAv-QW38Q

In 1981, Billy Idol left the punk rock band Generation X for a solo career, and this cover of the Tommy James classic became one of his first big hits. It would later prove to be one of the most popular dance songs of the decade, even though the song was banned from many high school dances (including mine) because students loved to chant “Get stoned, get ####ed!” after each line of the verse. 

At college parties, we chanted “laid” rather than “stoned”, although the latter was a whole lot more attainable for me.

Edited by zamboni
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Just now, zamboni said:

At college parties, wr chanted “laid” rather than “stoned”, although the latter was a whole lot more attainable for me.

I think it was “laid”. You’re right, my memory is failing me. I’ll correct. 

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4 minutes ago, timschochet said:
6 minutes ago, zamboni said:

At college parties, wr chanted “laid” rather than “stoned”, although the latter was a whole lot more attainable for me.

I think it was “laid”. You’re right, my memory is failing me. I’ll correct. 

We were just talking about that song and chant somewhere...I think scorchys postpunk thread.

Somebody wondered about the chants origin...nobody had answers. Who can sleuth this thing out?

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20 minutes ago, El Floppo said:

We were just talking about that song and chant somewhere...I think scorchys postpunk thread.

Somebody wondered about the chants origin...nobody had answers. Who can sleuth this thing out?

Gotta love the Googles:

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.ajournalofmusicalthings.com/where-did-the-special-lyrics-in-billy-idols-version-of-mony-mony-come-from/%3famp

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24 minutes ago, zamboni said:

Tldr;

"So where does this leave us? Sadly, no closer to the truth than when we started. The origins of the “Mony Mony” meme remains a mystery."

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2 minutes ago, El Floppo said:
27 minutes ago, zamboni said:

Tldr;

"So where does this leave us? Sadly, no closer to the truth than when we started. The origins of the “Mony Mony” meme remains a mystery."

I didn’t get that far - lol.

I’m blaming the same cretin that came up with the “bum-bum-bum/so good” chant in “Sweet Caroline”.

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21 minutes ago, zamboni said:

I didn’t get that far - lol.

I’m blaming the same cretin that came up with the “bum-bum-bum/so good” chant in “Sweet Caroline”.

Don't. Do. That. Please.

Signed, a former baseball and formerly unashamed Red Sox fan.

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1 hour ago, El Floppo said:

We were just talking about that song and chant somewhere...I think scorchys postpunk thread.

Somebody wondered about the chants origin...nobody had answers. Who can sleuth this thing out?

Totally scorchy's thread. We were trying to figure out how it happened. I reminisced that it even crossed small town lines at one point during my time in high school as our school adopted the neighboring school's seemingly novel tradition of chanting that little special couplet.

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When we fall to the fascists, will we look at our youth nostalgically or will we simply wish it weren't so misspent? Asking for a friend who keeps tapping on my shoulder here.

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2 minutes ago, rockaction said:

When we fall to the fascists, will we look at our youth nostalgically or will we simply wish it weren't so misspent? Asking for a friend who keeps tapping on my shoulder here.

Yes.

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3 minutes ago, El Floppo said:

Yes.

You just won Family Feud to shouts of "Good answer! Good answer!" and the Dawson pivot towards the board. (Don't let him try and kiss ya.)

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90. Elvis Costello “New Lace Sleeves” (from Trust)

https://youtu.be/aCGlI--LM5E

I regard Trust as in a tie with This Year’s Model for Costello’s greatest album. I also would rank it as the best album of 1981, and my only regret is that there’s no room on this list but for a couple of songs. 
The first single off the album, “Clubland”, was actually first released in 1980 and thus not eligible for this list. “New Lace Sleeves” came out the following year and sadly received no attention outside of the UK. It’s an absolutely brilliant jazz-infused pop song with lyrics that are among the best Costello ever wrote- they put him on a level with Bob Dylan as perhaps rock’s best ever lyricist. Except for its (relative) obscurity this song would be higher on my list. 

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  • timschochet changed the title to The 100 Greatest Songs of 1981 #90. New Lace Sleeves
10 minutes ago, timschochet said:

90. Elvis Costello “New Lace Sleeves” (from Trust)

Meh. I wanted to like it. One website describes the lyrics as "opaque," and that's generous. Critics, per Wiki, seem to be reading into stuff that isn't there.

Nothing on Dylan, frankly, and I'm not even sure Dylan should be as lionized as he is. (Though I'm admittedly guilty of Dylan love and am impressed.) I'm not sure any rock lyrics are really all that great. It's, as some would say, the beat that gets you. The beat, the beat.

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21 minutes ago, rockaction said:

Meh. I wanted to like it. One website describes the lyrics as "opaque," and that's generous. Critics, per Wiki, seem to be reading into stuff that isn't there.

Nothing on Dylan, frankly, and I'm not even sure Dylan should be as lionized as he is. (Though I'm admittedly guilty of Dylan love and am impressed.) I'm not sure any rock lyrics are really all that great. It's, as some would say, the beat that gets you. The beat, the beat.

A little too much spotlighting, Ranking rockaction.

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34 minutes ago, timschochet said:

90. Elvis Costello “New Lace Sleeves” (from Trust)

https://youtu.be/aCGlI--LM5E

I regard Trust as in a tie with This Year’s Model for Costello’s greatest album. I also would rank it as the best album of 1981, and my only regret is that there’s no room on this list but for a couple of songs. 
The first single off the album, “Clubland”, was actually first released in 1980 and thus not eligible for this list. “New Lace Sleeves” came out the following year and sadly received no attention outside of the UK. It’s an absolutely brilliant jazz-infused pop song with lyrics that are among the best Costello ever wrote- they put him on a level with Bob Dylan as perhaps rock’s best ever lyricist. Except for its (relative) obscurity this song would be higher on my list. 

I think we've discussed this one- one of my favorite albums period. There are other tunes I prefer- looking forward to seeing what else youll include- but I still love this track too.

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  • timschochet changed the title to The 100 Greatest Songs of 1981 #89. Prince Charming
8 minutes ago, timschochet said:

89. Adam & the Ants “Prince Charming” (from Prince Charming

https://youtu.be/9p__WmyAE3g

The pirate shtick was fun but the music is even better. Very good New Wave pop hits with lots of percussion. Might be ranked higher except for that annoying squeal at the beginning of this song. 

 

Good song, good video. Adam embraced the video era as well as anyone back then - I’m looking at you, not so goody-two-shoes :excited:

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12 minutes ago, rockaction said:

Tryin' to forget your generation

see?! even that. soooo coattailing

joke of the 20th century, next to Perfectability of Man. latchkey kids turning Boomer deconstructions into their archetypes. SpoofCon - an entire culture made of the same laminated microfibres as are sold in the home decor aisle of Target.

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42 minutes ago, wikkidpissah said:

see?! even that. soooo coattailing

joke of the 20th century, next to Perfectability of Man. latchkey kids turning Boomer deconstructions into their archetypes. SpoofCon - an entire culture made of the same laminated microfibres as are sold in the home decor aisle of Target.

I'm pretty sure I agree with this and also find it funny.  :lmao:

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  • timschochet changed the title to The 100 Greatest Songs of 1981 #88. Be Good Johnny
6 minutes ago, timschochet said:

88. Men at Work “Be Good Johnny” (from Business as Usual

https://youtu.be/74dvJVwGA6Y

1981 was definitely the best year ever for this Australian band as they never had as many hits as on their debut album. Too bad as Colin Hay is a very talented songwriter. This tune was terrific satire and catchy as well. 

 

 

 

Good tune - another one that’s probably more memorable for the video than the song itself.

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4 hours ago, wikkidpissah said:

see?! even that. soooo coattailing

joke of the 20th century, next to Perfectability of Man. latchkey kids turning Boomer deconstructions into their archetypes. SpoofCon - an entire culture made of the same laminated microfibres as are sold in the home decor aisle of Target.

Actually, I'd say we mastered the reconstruction your generation's tendencies toward oblivion left us with.

https://youtu.be/DuDX6wNfjqc?t=232

Oh, God. If love is the answer, you're home.

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1 hour ago, timschochet said:

88. Men at Work “Be Good Johnny” (from Business as Usual

https://youtu.be/74dvJVwGA6Y

1981 was definitely the best year ever for this Australian band as they never had as many hits as on their debut album. Too bad as Colin Hay is a very talented songwriter. This tune was terrific satire and catchy as well.

Skip ditty skip up the road
Off to school you go
Don't be a bad boy, Johnny
Don't you slip up, and play the fool
"Oh no, Ma," "Oh no, Pa"
I'll be your golden boy
I will obey every golden rule

Remember that because it was one the first records I ever chose to purchase as a kid.

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11 hours ago, timschochet said:

Ah. Well it won’t be the only cover. (Not even the only Tommy James cover!) 

But in any case I think it’s a pretty good song. Not great by any means but #91 seems about right. 

You must not think much of this year if you think only 90 of its songs are better than "not great by any means". 

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10 hours ago, zamboni said:

I didn’t get that far - lol.

I’m blaming the same cretin that came up with the “bum-bum-bum/so good” chant in “Sweet Caroline”.

Damn fratboys. 

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1 hour ago, rockaction said:

Actually, I'd say we mastered the reconstruction your generation's tendencies toward oblivion left us with.

https://youtu.be/DuDX6wNfjqc?t=232

Oh, God. If love is the answer, you're home.

I was just gonna respond with "OK boomer" but yours is better. 

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4 hours ago, DocHolliday said:

This list got not so good too soon.  Shouldn’t the songs be improving as we head towards number 1?

I view things like this as an excuse to talk about the tunes.  The specific order is largely irrelevant. 

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11 hours ago, Ghost Rider said:

I view things like this as an excuse to talk about the tunes.  The specific order is largely irrelevant. 

These type of threads are my favorites on the site now

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87. Foreigner “Waiting For a Girl Like You” (from 4)

https://youtu.be/5jhocSCSZzk

Very nice power ballad. One thing I learned for the first time when reading up on this song: that very distinctive synthesizer is by Thomas Dolby, then unknown. 
Earlier I praised Steve Perry as being one of traditional rock’s greatest vocalists, but Lou Gramm is certainly up there as well. Just a fantastic voice. 

Edited by timschochet
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  • timschochet changed the title to The 100 Greatest Songs of 1981 #87. Waiting For a Girl Like You
21 hours ago, Ghost Rider said:

One of my favorite rock quotes ever is from David Lee Roth: 

“the reason most critics love Elvis Costello is because most of them look like Elvis Costello.”

Diamond Dave was just a gigalo

Most rock critics don't have THIS choice charm dangling on their arm.

Add, worked at a restaurant and at times we'd have to wait for the last table to leave and some people would just not leave so we came up with a plan to loop:

Humala bebuhla zeebuhla boobuhla
Humala bebuhla zeebuhla bop

over and over and over and play it at max volume to force out people if they stayed too long.  

Edited by Bracie Smathers
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  • timschochet changed the title to The 100 Greatest Songs of 1981 #1 Super Freak

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