1979….don’t forget our B-52’s

LOOKING BACK 32 YEARS AGO AT A BIT ‘O POP MUSIC HISTORY, 1979 WAS AN INTERESTING YEAR;  THE AGE’D DINOSAURS OF ROCK HAD OVER-EXCESS-ED THEMSELVES INTO DIMINISHED POPULARITY, POST-PUNK WAS STARTING TO KICK ASS AND “NEW WAVE” HADN’T BEEN TOTALLY TAKEN OVER BY THE CORPORATE MUSIC GIANTS.

A (VERY) FEW NOTABLE ALBUMS RELEASED IN 1979:     THE BRITISH ONSLAUGHT= JOY DIVISION ‘UNKNOWN PLEASURES’, THE CLASH ‘LONDON CALLING’, JAPAN ‘QUIET LIFE’, THE DAMNED ‘MACHINE GUN ETIQUETTE’, THE FALL ‘DRAGNET’, WIRE ‘154’, GARY NEWMAN/TUBEWAY ARMY ‘REPLICAS’, SIOUXIE & THE BANSHEES ‘JOIN HANDS’, MOTORHEAD ‘OVERKILL’ AND XTC ‘DRUMS & WIRES’.  IN THE US=  DEVO ‘DUTY NOW FOR THE FUTURE’, BLONDIE ‘EAT TO THE BEAT’ AND THE B-52’S ‘S/T’.

I KNOW THERE ARE MANY FOLKS THAT WOULD RATHER SHOOT THEMSELVES THAN HEAR “ROCK LOBSTER” AGAIN, OR WHO ASSOCIATE THE B-52’S WITH TRAUMATIC SCHOOL DANCES OR DRUNKEN GIRLS AT PARTIES SCREECHING ALONG TO “LOVE SHACK”…..BUT THAT’S ONLY ONE SIDE OF THE FACADE,  or, ONE SIDE OF A BAND THAT DESERVES TO GIVEN A BIT MORE CREDIBILITY THAN JUST A NOVELTY ACT.

LOOK PAST THE BOUFFANT WIGS, THE VINTAGE DRESSES (WHICH IS AN IMAGE STILL RIGHTFULLY THEIR OWN) AND STAGE ANTICS AND HEAR A TOTALLY UNIQUE SOUND COMING OUT OF ATHENS GA IN ’77/’78 – OR, IF THE VOCAL PRESENTATION OF FRED SCHNEIDER TURNS YOU OFF LISTEN TO THE SWEET-HARMONIES-to-SCREAMS OF CINDY WILSON & KATE PIERSON- OR DIG THE REMARKABLY SUBTLE, SOPHISTICATED AND CATCHY GUITAR WORK OF RICKY WILSON (PART SURF, PART POST-PUNK, ALL GARAGE!)- OR THE RHYTHMIC INTERPLAY BETWEEN THE DRUMS AND ORGAN.

IN SHORT, WE CAN’T MAKE YOU LIKE THE B-52’S, BUT HOPEFULLY PAUSE, RECONSIDER OR RE-EVALUATE THE MERIT OF WHAT’S GOING ON IN THIS BAND MUSICALLY (ON THEIR FIRST AND SECOND ALBUMS) AND THE PLACE THEY SHOULD OCCUPY IN THE  POP CANNON AS A TRUE AMERICAN ORIGINAL.


WE PRESENT THESE FOLLOWING VIDEOS FROM 1978 FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION (WOW, WHO WAS SITTING ON THESE?!) AND TO QUESTION THE COMMON CONCEPTION OF WHAT “PUNK ROCK” TRULY MEANS – ENJOY!


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