80’s Blast::London

(anyone who thinks otherwise can go jump in Lake Minnetonka)

In Memory of Lizzie Grey (1958-2019)

London was formed in 1978 by Lizzie Grey, Nikki Sixx, and Dane Rage. Nadir D’Priest and Brian West joined in 1984. Former members include Blackie Lawless (W.A.S.P.), Izzy Stradlin, Slash & Steven Adler (Guns N’ Roses), and Fred Coury (Cinderella)

From Wikipedia:
In 1988, London appropriately appeared in the Penelope Spheeris film The Decline of Western Civilization II: The Metal Years describing their band as a “training school for rock stars”.

The above clip includes live performances by London (“Breakout” and “Russian Winter”) – with D’Priest (vocals), Grey (guitar), Frankie Jones (guitar), Derek Shea (drums), and Brian West (bass)

Both “Breakout” and “Russian Winter” are included on the hard-to-find The Metal Years (2008), as well as a kick-ass version of The Beatles’ “Oh Darling” and “Shout at the Devil” as a BONUS TRACK. There are 16 tracks on this cd including two of my favorites:  “Spanish Harlem” and “Ride You Thru The Night”.

The band sure has had a revolving-door of members. Here are a couple of line-ups from “back-in-the-day” and one from 2013’s Rocklahoma:

Nadir D’Priest had (hands-down) the best hair of the 80’s. I had the pleasure of seeing him perform live (1989?) at The Stone in SF, as frontman for D’Priest. Gorgeous man.

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80’s Blast::We Didn’t Start the Fire

(anyone who thinks otherwise can go jump in Lake Minnetonka)

Been “power-walking” (walking briskly on hilly roads while wearing 1-pound weighted hand gloves) 2-1/2 3 miles each morning before starting my normal 30-minute workout routine.

I tend to “walk to the beat” of whatever I’m listening to so I pick songs that have an upbeat tempo. I’ve already published a Post on one song I find especially suited to these walks, but there’s another that’s VERY fast-paced. In fact, I practically DANCE along to it!  (This must look hilarious to anyone who happens to see me passing by!)

Billy Joel
We Didn’t Start the Fire (1989)
from the album Storm Front (1989)

from Wikipedia
Joel got the idea for the song when he had just turned 40. He was in a recording studio and met a friend of Sean Lennon who had just turned 21 who said “It’s a terrible time to be 21!” Joel replied to him, “Yeah, I remember when I was 21 – I thought it was an awful time and we had Vietnam, and y’know, drug problems, and civil rights problems and everything seemed to be awful.” The friend replied, “Yeah, yeah, yeah, but it’s different for you. You were a kid in the fifties and everybody knows that nothing happened in the fifties”. Joel retorted, “Wait a minute, didn’t you hear of the Korean War or the Suez Canal Crisis?” Joel later said those headlines formed the basic framework for the song.

What I LOVE about “We Didn’t Start the Fire” is the juxtaposition of lyrical content (Billy Joel has said, “There’s an element of malevolence in the song; it’s like waiting for the other shoe to drop.”) and the crazy, upbeat melody (Joel’s admitted it’s one of the worst he’s ever written) – especially during the chorus.

The lyrics include brief, rapid-fire allusions to more than 100 headline events between 1949, the year of Joel’s birth, and 1989, when the song was released on his album Storm Front. link

Harry Truman, Doris Day, Red China, Johnnie Ray
South Pacific, Walter Winchell, Joe DiMaggio

Joe McCarthy, Richard Nixon, Studebaker, Television
North Korea, South Korea, Marilyn Monroe

Rosenbergs, H-bomb, Sugar Ray, Panmunjom
Brando, “The King and I” and “The Catcher in the Rye”

Eisenhower, Vaccine, England’s got a new queen
Marciano, Liberace, Santayana goodbye

We didn’t start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
We didn’t start the fire
No we didn’t light it
But we tried to fight it

Joseph Stalin, Malenkov, Nasser and Prokofiev
Rockefeller, Campanella, Communist Bloc

Roy Cohn, Juan Peron, Toscanini, Dacron
Dien Bien Phu falls, “Rock Around the Clock”

Einstein, James Dean, Brooklyn’s got a winning team
Davy Crockett (Here’s a two-fer:  The nuclear device, Davy Crockett, also debuted.), Peter Pan, Elvis Presley, Disneyland

Bardot, Budapest, Alabama, Krushchev
Princess Grace, “Peyton Place”, trouble in the Suez


Little Rock, Pasternak, Mickey Mantle, Kerouac
Sputnik, Chou En-Lai, “Bridge on the River Kwai”

Lebanon, Charles de Gaulle, California baseball
Starkweather homicide, children of Thalidomide

Buddy Holly, “Ben Hur”, space monkey, Mafia
Hula hoops, Castro, Edsel is a no-go

U2, Syngman Rhee, payola and Kennedy
Chubby Checker, “Psycho”, Belgians in the Congo


Hemingway, Eichmann, “Stranger in a Strange Land”
Dylan, Berlin, Bay of Pigs invasion

“Lawrence of Arabia”, British Beatlemania
Ole Miss, John Glenn, Liston beats Patterson

Pope Paul, Malcolm X, British politician sex
JFK blown away, what else do I have to say


Birth control, Ho Chi Minh, Richard Nixon back again
Moonshot, Woodstock, Watergate, Punk Rock

Begin, Reagan (Another 2-fer:  Reagan’s 1976 Presidential campaign), Palestine, terror on the airline
Ayatollah’s in Iran, Russians in Afghanistan

“Wheel of Fortune”, Sally Ride, Heavy Metal suicide
Foreign debts, Homeless Vets, AIDS, Crack, Bernie Goetz

We didn’t start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
We didn’t start the fire
But when we are gone
Will it still burn on, and on, and on, and on



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80’s Blast::St. Elmo’s Fire (1985)

(anyone who thinks otherwise can go jump in Lake Minnetonka)

I’ve been “power-walking” (walking briskly on hilly roads while wearing 1-pound weighted hand gloves) 2-1/2 miles each morning before picking-up the weights. I set-up a Playlist on my iPod specifically for this cardio workout. (More on this later.) One of the songs has proven to be especially inspiring:

John Parr
St. Elmo’s Fire (Man in Motion) (1984)
from the album John Parr (1984)

from Wikipedia
“David Foster and John Parr were contracted to write a song for the film, but Parr struggled inspiration for the lyrics. Foster showed Parr a news clip about the Canadian athlete Rick Hansen, who at the time was going around the world in his wheelchair to raise awareness for spinal cord injuries. His journey was called the “Man in Motion Tour.” Parr decided to help the campaign by writing words that would fit vaguely with the film, but which directly referenced Hansen’s efforts.”

In addition, this song just so happens to be the theme to one of my favorite (80’s) movies:  St. Elmo’s Fire (1985).


The film stars the 1980’s version of the Brat Pack:  Rob Lowe, Demi Moor, Emilio Estevez, Ally Sheedy, Judd Nelson, Mare Winningham, Andrew McCarthy – with Andie MacDowell.

I am SO in love with Jules’ apartment.

12 Fun Facts You Probably Never Knew About St. Elmo’s Fire (the movie)

Just for the record, “St. Elmo’s Fire” IS a real phenomenon (in spite of Rob Lowe’s character stating otherwise in the film).

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80’s Blast::Manowar

(anyone who thinks otherwise can go jump in Lake Minnetonka)


“In 1984 the band was included in the Guinness Book of World Records for delivering the loudest performance, a record which they have since broken on 2 occasions. They also hold the world record for the longest heavy metal concert after playing for 5 hours and 1 minute in Bulgaria (at Kavarna Rock Fest) in 2008.”

Blow Your Speakers
from Fighting the World (1987)

Manowar (1987 album, Fighting the World)

Another “workout” song…

“In 2002, six years after the last studio album, Manowar released the Warriors of the World album. Warriors of the World presented a sound somewhat renewed in style, but maintained the usual energy and power. The most famous tracks from the album became ‘Warriors of the World United’, ‘House of Death’ and ‘Call to Arms’, in addition to Puccini’s aria ‘Nessun Dorma‘ (from Giacomo Puccini’s opera Turandot), covered in honor of the Italian fans and sung live (by Eric Adams) for the first time in a concert in Milan (1999).”

Nessun Dorma
from Warriors of the World (2002)
Manowar (2002 album, Warriors of the World)

(This gives me goosebumps.)

Manowar – then and now

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80’s Blast::David Lee Roth

(anyone who thinks otherwise can go jump in Lake Minnetonka)

David Lee Roth
Just A Gigolo
from the album Crazy from the Heat (1985)

David Lee Roth (1985 album, Crazy from the Heat)

One of the songs I’m workin’ out to right now…*

* 1-12-13
Animal (Def Leppard)
Just A Gigolo (David Lee Roth)
Rock You Like A Hurrican (Scorpions)
The Warrior (Scandal)
Never (Heart)
I Need You Tonight (INXS)
I Would Die 4 You (Prince)
The Bird (The Time)
Beat the Bullet (Vain)
Secrets (Vain)
Blue Highway (Billy Idol)
You Can’t Stop Rock and Roll (Twisted Sister)
Leather Master (Dammaj)
Light of Day (Joan Jett)
Russian Winter (London)
You’re In Love (Ratt)
Practice What You Preach (Testament)
California Girls (David Lee Roth)
Smoke and Shadows (Vain)

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