Archive for The Warriors

Great Soundtracks of 1984: Streets of Fire

Posted in 1980s, films, Music, Rock, soundtracks, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 16, 2017 by 80smetalman

Unlike “Footloose” the soundtrack to the film “Streets of Fire” went with virtually unknown or less known artists, at least for the time. It would be six months to a year before I would hear about The Fixx. The only others I had heard of were Ry Cooder and The Blasters and I’ll get to them in a minute. Stevie Nicks does write and sing backing vocals on the Marilyn Martin track, “Sorcerer” but for the most part, the artists were virtually unknown to me at the time. However, I would take this soundtrack over that of “Footloose.” Quiet Riot, Foreigner and Sammy Hagar weren’t quite enough to tip it past “Streets of Fire” in my eyes.

Before I get onto the soundtrack, let me provide a little background about the film, which was slammed mercilessly by most critics. The 23 year old me in 1984 thought this film was okay. I mean it was the 1980s where one shot from a gun could set off multiple massive explosions and men settled their differences with sledgehammers. What wasn’t there to like? However, as I grew older, I realized how surreal the movie was almost bordering on the ridiculous.

“Streets of Fire” is about a famous rock singer named Ellen Aim who gets kidnapped by a motorcycle gang, led by a guy named Raven played Willem Dafoe, while performing a gig in her home town. Without going into great detail, Ellen is rescued by former boyfriend Tom with the help of an ex-army girl named McCoy played by Amy Madigan. After many explosions and action sequences where they receive aid from an all black doo-wop band called the Sorrells, Tom and Raven have their predictable show down at the end. First with the fore-mentioned sledgehammers and then with fists. Therefore, Dafoe gets his ass kicked twice. Other little details include Rick Moranis, playing the usual nerd but this time it’s in a serious role as Ellen Aim’s manager and current boyfriend. His best line in the film is, “It’s the shits.” He says it several times and his performance, while good, never made me think that doing “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” was a bad career move. The best performance was by Amy Madigan who did receive a nomination for best supporting actress, so I’m not just saying it because Mrs 80smetalman is a huge Amy Madigan fan.

Amy Madigan as McCoy

Rick Moranis as Ellen Aim’s manager. “It’s the shits.”

Willem Dafoe as Raven. Note the pvc dungarees.

Okay, the film wasn’t Oscar material but that doesn’t stop it from having a rather cool soundtrack. When it first came out, MTV plugged the film by constantly playing the video from the first single, Fire Inc’s “Tonight Is What it Means to Be Young.” I do really like the song which was probably why it didn’t go anywhere in the charts. The most successful song as far as chart success was “I Can Dream About You” by Dan Hartman. It is a good song but the irony here is that in the film, the song is performed by The Sorrells. Back in 1984 many people were amazed that a song performed by a black quartet in the film was actually sung by a white man. I think it’s great we’re more wiser about these things nowadays.

Dan Hartman

The Sorrells in Streets of Fire

While all the songs I’ve mentioned are good ones, for me, it’s the rockabilly songs that make this soundtrack. The two tracks by The Blasters are the best songs here and “Hold That Snake” by Ry Cooder gets the bronze. All three of these tracks are just really damn cool and the soundtrack wouldn’t be nearly as good without them. For the record, the song by The Fixx, while good as well, didn’t have me wanting to check out future material without hearing it first.

So, is “Streets of Fire” a bad film with a really cool soundtrack? Well, it’s not a bad film, but it does have a killer soundtrack.

Next post: Great and Not So Great Movies of 1984

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to: https://www.amazon.com/Rock-Roll-Children-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1609763556/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1508165794&sr=8-3&keywords=michael+d+lefevre

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Great Rock Albums of 1982: Loverboy- Get Lucky

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 4, 2014 by 80smetalman

220px-GetluckyLB

Sometime halfway through my second deployment to the Mediterranean and Indian Ocean, while watching a backdated episode of America’s Top 40 with Casey Kasem, I was treated to the Loverboy hit “Working for the Weekend.” Admittedly, it didn’t quite have the knock out punch I liked about “Turn Me Loose” but it was good enough to have me make a mental note on buying it when I either got to the PX in Rota, Spain or back to the States. It also brought back memories of the previous summer and the Driftwood, even though Twinkles had left a few months before the end of 1981.

True to my word, “Get Lucky” was the first new album I listened to when I returned that summer and I wasn’t disappointed. It has just the right blend of progressive and hard rock to make it work. “When It’s Over” is more proggy but the hard rock of “Jump” takes over nicely. Other good hard rock tracks come and go after leaving their own stamp on the album. “Emotional” reminds me of classic REO Speedwagon back when they were good in the 70s. “Lucky Ones” brings back fond memories of the first album and there’s always has been something about “It’s Your Life” that I liked. The album goes out on more a progressive note with “Take Me to the Top” but it’s definitely the right closer for this album. Of all the songs on “Get Lucky,” the one that stands well above the rest for me is “Gangs in the Street.” I don’t know if it’s because it reminds me of my all time favourite film, “The Warriors” or because the video tries to make Loverboy look bad ass in an unconvincing way or probably just because I like the guitar solo. Whatever it is, the song works and is why this album is so good.

Track Listing:

1. Working for the Weekend

2. When It’s Over

3. Jump

4. Gangs in the Street

5. Emotional

6. Lucky Ones

7. It’s Your Life

8. Better Watch Out

9. Take Me To the Top

Loverboy

Loverboy

Mike Reno- vocals

Paul Dean- guitar, vocals

Doug Johnson- keyboards

Scott Smith- bass

Mike Frenette- drums

Loverboy seem to have been forgotten by many people now, not me, but back in the very early 80s, they staked their claim on the rock world with two very good albums. They were another reason why Canadian artists have never gotten the respect they deserved.

Next post: Asia

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

Great Rock Albums of 1979: The Rose- Soundtrack

Posted in 1979, films, Music, Rock, soundtracks, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on January 18, 2013 by 80smetalman

Therose

This 1979 film starring Bette Midler is a great film about a female rock star in the late sixties. Many have said that the film was based on Janis Joplin and that’s not a bad thing. After all, Janis was the primitive archetype of what the modern rock chick is today. It is also the reason why I enjoyed the film so much when I first saw it. It was a real experience when Bette Midler, in character, rushed onto the stage during one of the concert scenes and shouted to the audience, “Hey you mother fuckers!” It was also the first time I heard the terms sex, drugs and rock and roll used together. From then on, its been that for me all the way.

Janis Joplin

Janis Joplin

Not only was it a cool film, but the soundtrack is very good. There are some real good rocking tracks on it like “Sold My Soul to Rock and Roll” and “Keep On Rockin,” the latter co-written by Sammy Hagar. It also reminded me that if done right, a horn section can go very well with some straight ahead rock and roll. Of course, there is the more tender moments like the song the bears the title of the film and soundtrack, obviously made for the top 40 singles charts at the time. And although this sounds morbid, I do like the song “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” where the character dies in the film while singing it on stage. Nonetheless, this soundtrack for me rivals the soundtrack to “The Warriors” for best film soundtrack for the year.

Track Listing:

1. Who’s Side Are You On

2. Midnight in Memphis

3. Concert Monologue

4. When A Man Loves A Woman

5. Sold My Soul to Rock and Roll

6. Keep on Rockin’

7. Love Me With A Feeling

8. Camellia

9. Homecoming Monologue

10. Stay With Me

11. Let Me Call You Sweetheart

12. The Rose

Bette Midler as The Rose

Bette Midler as The Rose

Bette Midler- Lead Vocals

Danny Weis- guitar

Steve Hunter- guitar

Mark Leonard- bass

Robbie Buchanan- keyboards

Pentti “Whitey” Glan- drums

Norton Buffalo- harmonica and trombone, background vocals

Jerry Jumonville- saxophone

Mark Underwood- trumpet

Billy Champlin- background vocals

Donny Gerrard- background vocals

Visiting this soundtrack makes me want to see the film again, I haven’t seen it in about twenty years so I’m about due. This is a great film with a great soundtrack and you should like both.

Next post: Jefferson Starship- Freedom At Point Zero

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Rock Albums of 1979: The Eagles- The Long Run

Posted in 1979, Music, Rock, soundtracks, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on September 6, 2012 by 80smetalman

“The Long Run” was the long awaited follow up to The Eagles’ great 1976 album “Hotel California.” That previous album began to take them away from their easy listening sound to more of a harder rock sound and “The Long Run” continued along in that direction. My first taste of this classic album was when I was on leave after just finishing boot camp and the song “Heartache Tonight” came on my AM car radio. I was very impressed by the harder sound of the guitars and even more impressed by the guitar solos in it. Side tracking for a moment, I will say that Joe Walsh and Don Felder never receieved the respect due them as guitarists, even after their solo tradeoff in the song “Hotel California.” Anyway, tracks like the last one mentioned as well as “In The City” which Joe Walsh brought over from “The Warriors” soundtrack, “Disco Strangler” and “Teenage Jail” are just some of the harder rock songs that help make this album so great.

Saying that, “The Long Run” doesn’t totally take them from their roots of the easy listening countrified sound. There are a couple of tracks that remind us where they came from. Such songs as “The Sad Cafe” and “I Can’t Tell You Why” bear testimony to that fact and to me, the title track of the album serves as the bridge between the soft and the hard. Add all of these things together and you get a fantastic album that has continued to remain so over three decades.

Track Listing:

1. The Long Run

2. I Cant Tell You Why

3. In the City

4. The Disco Strangler

5. King of Hollywood

6. Heartache Tonight

7. Those Shoes

8. Teenage Jail

9. The Greeks Don’t Want No Freaks

10. The Sad Cafe

The Eagles

Glen Frey- electric guitar, keyboards, synthesiser, vocals

Don Henley- drums, percussion, vocals

Don Felder- electric, accoustic and slide guitars, organ, vocals

Joe Walsh- electric and slide guitars, keyboards, vocals

Timothy B Schmit- bass, vocals ]

“The Long Run” was the first album not to feature founding member Randy Meisner on bass who was replaced by Timothy B. Schmit. I have also noticed that when I posted the tracks, I don’t remember them being in that order in my cassette. I guess it’s a trip back up the loft to see for myself or maybe I should just get a CD. Still, this is a brilliant album and the first new album I listened to as a marine.

This would be the last Eagles studio album before their break up in 1980. I have always put that down to so many talented musicians each wanting to go a separate way. The evidence is the solo albums each one of them recorded afterwards that I will be visiting down the line.

Next post: The Knack- Get The Knack

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

 

 

 

Great Rock Albums of 1979: The Warriors Soundtrack

Posted in 1979, films, Music, Rock, soundtracks, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on August 6, 2012 by 80smetalman

 

This is my favourite movie of all time, I must have seen it at least 25 times and could probably act every part in it, although not very well. When asked why, I explain that as a youth I had some morbid fascination with gang fights, I don’t know why. Anyway, I’m not doing a self psych evaluation here. The amusing thing I remember about this film was that there was an uproar when it was coming to Philadelphia because of fears of gang violence. It seems that in some other major US cities, gangs would go to the film for a bit of inspiration and then have a rumble after, only in America.

Onto the soundtrack, when I first watched the movie way back in 1979, it was the last movie I went to before I joined the marines, I was very impressed with the soundtrack. There were some real hard rocking songs on it. As a result I bought it on my first leave after boot camp and I was right, for the most part. I do have to say that I wasn’t impressed by the track “Echoes in My Mind” and usually skipped over it when I listened on vinyl or turned down the volume when listening to it on cassette in the car. Nevertheless, the other songs more than make up for it. The ones that definitely do it for me are “Love is a Fire,” “Last of an Ancient Breed” and the song from Joe Walsh which would be re recorded by the Eagles in an album I will visit in the not too distant future, “In the City.”

Track Listing

1. Barry De Vorzon- The Theme to the Warriors

2. Arnold McCuller- Nowhere to Run

3. Kenny Vance and Ismael Miranda- In Havana

4. Mantrill- Echoes in My Mind

5. Barry De Vorzon- The Fight

6. Joe Walsh- In the City

7. Genya Ravan- Love is a Fire

8. Barry De Vorzon- The Baseball Furies Chase

9. Johnny Vastano- You’re Moving Too Slow

10. Desmond Child- Last of an Ancient Breed

When I was in the marines, I met many people from New York who said this film was a load of bull. The gangs aren’t visible like they are in the film and one guy said that if his gang went up against a gang looking like the Baseball Furies, the Furies would have kicked their asses because they would have been to busy laughing at them. Whatever you might have though of the film, this is still a great soundtrack with some really cool songs.

Next post: The Cars- Candy O

To buy Rock and Roll Children- go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London