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Friday Night Music Playlist No. 5

March 11, 2017

1988 was a good year for music. Much of what I enjoyed listening to stems from the early to late 80s synth-rock or new wave. I have always loved music that is keyboard rich, full of bass lines and wild vocals. Creativity in music has not ceased, but I think musicians today are not as good as some of the bands and vocalists I listened to in peak of my young life. If you had only a handful of bands or vocalists you could listen to today, who would you listen to with your headphones and your feet up, just relaxing? I cannot say that with much of the music that is played today. I think I understand the concept of generational gaps now, and I guess it is why I do not listen to music on the radio as much anymore. In some ways, I am just one of those weird people you take no notice of until you hear the music I play, and then ask what am I listening to (usually on my iPhone). Lately, I have been listening to the likes of Oingo Boingo (if you want to know more click here.) and the music of Danny Elfman. It is like comfort food for the ears.

I am not sure how this entry will pan out. As tired as I am right now, I want to post music that is energetic and fun. I will likely only post a few songs tonight, but they will be songs that are important to me, or songs that I have recently discovered and have come to really enjoy hearing. There is nothing like an energetic beat to help recharge you and get your groove going. Since I have nothing better to do this strange and weird Friday night let’s take a look at some music. Thank you for joining me.

Oingo Boingo was prominent in the 1980s,  Only a Lad was first released in 1980, but I did not hear this album until almost 1985 or 1986, and that is when we still had vinyl LPs and cassettes. I think I bought this on cassette at Music+, just before audio CDs became the norm for listening to music. The song “Only a Lad is probably one of my favorite songs as is “Who Do You Want To Be.” I have my friend Steve Ebert to thank for letting me first listen to Oingo Boingo. He was my camp counselor and cabin mate at the church camp (Thousand Pines Outdoor Christian Camp) we were going to at the time. As we were on the bus going up to Crestline, California, Steve let me hear some songs on his Walkman.

It is funny. Today we listen to most of our music on MP3 devices or iPods or our cell phones.
I made 2 AA batteries stretch back then if I could. And, if the cassette tape wore out or got tangled in my Walkman, I learned quickly how to fix the tape with a pencil or pen, something foreign to most people under 30 years of age today.

Other songs that later quickly became favorites for me wereDead Man’s Party”,” Just Another Day, and “Nothing to Fear (But Fear Itself)“. Although this band of musicians had a unique sound that easily identifiable, and popular, I think Oingo Boingo might have also been a cross between Pop Rock and Ska. I think I can easily say that it is because of Oingo Boingo that I really came to like the later compositions of Danny Elfman. Care to guess which one of his movies he scored is one of my favorites? He composed for Pee Wee Herman’s Big Adventure, but that is not it. He composed The Nightmare Before Christmas, and that is on my list of favorites, too, but not it still. He composed Batman and Batman Returns and Spider-man. He has a signature sound, one I have come to revere almost as much as John Williams of Star Wars notoriety.  I would have to say Batman Returns was my favorite, and there are many memories still linked to this film score.

Oingo Boingo is emphatically worth listening to and buying their music. If I recommend songs or albums, I have or have had many of these albums or songs in my life. I want to say that even though there are links to check out the songs, please consider going to your music store or iTunes to purchase the music. For any of my past blogs where I have shared songs, this goes for them too. Support good music. I give Oingo Boingo a hang ten because two thumbs up is simply not enough.

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