independent and unofficial
Prince fan community site
Fri 18th Aug 2017 6:51pm
Welcome! Sign up or enter username and password to remember me
Forum jump
Forums > Music: Non-Prince > 80s songs that would smash today?
« Previous topic  Next topic »
Page 1 of 3 123>
  New topic   Printable     (Log in to 'subscribe' to this topic)
Author

Tweet     Share

Message
Thread started 05/15/17 2:07pm

Shawy89

avatar

80s songs that would smash today?

Billie Jean comes to mind as it's the definition of a timeless record cool

What'dya think?

You will not be punished for your anger, you will be punished by your anger. - Buddha
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #1 posted 05/15/17 2:31pm

MickyDolenz

After the New Edition movie aired this year, a few of their songs & albums re-entered the Billboard charts like Can You Stand The Rain & Candy Girl. I'm not sure they would actually get airplay as new songs today though, especially not Candy Girl. Can You Stand The Rain might get Adult R&B airplay today. I don't see much from the 1980s getting radio airplay today unless they are remixed into a current sound, sort of like they did with Elvis Presley songs like A Little Less Conversation & Rubberneckin' or those Verve compilations of remixed old jazz songs. The original mixes of the Elvis songs weren't likely to become a hit in the modern era.

It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #2 posted 05/15/17 2:52pm

Karo548363

'Careless Whisper'. Timeless saxophone. Not a big fan of this song, but I have to respect it.

'Never Tear Us Apart'. Nothing has aged about this song.

'Livin' on a Prayer'. I know it can be considered as big hair rock song with classic hymn chorus, but it could appeared in any time frame and people would still consider it a hit. It is damn well-written song.

'Rhythm Nation'. Great sound without compromise between being so popular and being an amazing song in terms of music craft.

'In the air Tonight'. Not obsessed with it, however I have to gave the credit where it's deserved. I wouldn't be surprised if it was a new song. Construction of the song is well thought.

'Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'. You can learn a lot about rhythm and beat just hearing this song.

Whole 'Appetite for Destruction' album. Breathe of fresh air everytime I listen to it.

'Sweet Sixteen'. Again: well written song without any gimmicks, just guitar which 'cause the sound very irresistible.

'Fast Car'. Nothing about this song put it just in the 80's. Beautiful, moving, poetic.

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #3 posted 05/15/17 2:55pm

namepeace

Prince, MJ's, Madge's and Janet's hits would have likely hit big today. Prince's signature hits are particularly inimitable.

Jam + Lewis could have placed a number of their 80's hits on the charts today.

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #4 posted 05/15/17 3:38pm

TheFman

Never gonna give you up

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #5 posted 05/15/17 4:24pm

purplethunder3
121

avatar

TheFman said:

Never gonna give you up

lol

Free your mind...and your ass will follow.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #6 posted 05/15/17 6:38pm

MickyDolenz

Karo548363 said:

Whole 'Appetite for Destruction' album.

Going by the current Top 40, the songs on here are not likely to become big hit singles today. I don't think there's a hard rock song on the entire Hot 100 singles chart.

It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #7 posted 05/15/17 6:39pm

purplethunder3
121

avatar

MickyDolenz said:

Karo548363 said:

Whole 'Appetite for Destruction' album.

Going by the current Top 40, the songs on here are not likely to become big hit singles today. I don't think there's a hard rock song on the entire Hot 100 singles chart.

Nope, but real rock is still out there...if someone looks for it.

Free your mind...and your ass will follow.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #8 posted 05/15/17 6:42pm

MickyDolenz

purplethunder3121 said:

Nope, but real rock is still out there...if someone looks for it.

If you have to look for it, then it can't be a smash then. razz

It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #9 posted 05/15/17 6:50pm

purplethunder3
121

avatar

MickyDolenz said:

purplethunder3121 said:

Nope, but real rock is still out there...if someone looks for it.

If you have to look for it, then it can't be a smash then. razz

No, but it means "real" music is still being created by artists who care.

Free your mind...and your ass will follow.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #10 posted 05/15/17 7:05pm

MickyDolenz

purplethunder3121 said:

No, but it means "real" music is still being created by artists who care.

That isn't what the OP asked though. Expecting a 1980s hard rock song to be a hit today is like expecting Engelbert Humperdinck to get Top 40 airplay in 1987. Metallica got on the Grammy broadcast because they did a duet with Lady Gaga and then their mike didn't work. lol I doubt they would have been shown on the TV broadcast by themselves. VH-1 had That Metal Show, and Rock Lives, but they got cancelled because of low ratings.

It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #11 posted 05/15/17 7:09pm

purplethunder3
121

avatar

MickyDolenz said:

purplethunder3121 said:

No, but it means "real" music is still being created by artists who care.

That isn't what the OP asked though. Expecting a 1980s hard rock song to be a hit today is like expecting Engelbert Humperdinck to get Top 40 airplay in 1987. Metallica got on the Grammy broadcast because they did a duet with Lady Gaga and then their mike didn't work. lol I doubt they would have been shown on the TV broadcast by themselves. VH-1 had That Metal Show, and Rock Lives, but they got cancelled because of low ratings.

Good point. razz lol

Free your mind...and your ass will follow.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #12 posted 05/16/17 6:51am

Dasein

Shawy89 said:

Billie Jean comes to mind as it's the definition of a timeless record cool

What'dya think?


I seriously doubt that songs from the 80s, even the "good ones", would be as successful today as they
were yesterday. The proof is in the music that is charting currently which hardly carries any similarities
in terms of genre, compositional/production values, etc. with what was charting back then.

"Billie Jean" was released in January 1983. But look at the other songs that were in the top 10 according
to Billboard at the same time:

1 MANEATER –•– Daryl Hall & John Oates (RCA)-13 (4 weeks at #1) (1)
2 THE GIRL IS MINE –•– Michael Jackson / Paul McCartney (Epic)-10 (2)
3 DIRTY LAUNDRY –•– Don Henley (Asylum)-11 (3)
4 DOWN UNDER –•– Men At Work (Columbia)-10 (4)
5 SEXUAL HEALING –•– Marvin Gaye (Columbia)-11 (5)
6 MICKEY –•– Toni Basil (Chrysalis)-19 (1)
7 GLORIA –•– Laura Branigan (Atlantic)-27 (2)
8 STEPPIN’ OUT –•– Joe Jackson (A&M)-21 (6)
9 ROCK THIS TOWN –•– The Stray Cats (EMI-America)-17 (9)
10 TRULY –•– Lionel Richie (Motown)-14 (1)

source

The compositional and production values heard in these songs are not what is popular today.


  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #13 posted 05/16/17 9:39am

funkaholic1972

avatar

Pfff, not many I am afraid. Times have changed and so have people's preferences and artist's production styles.

The only one that was suggested already that I agree on is Tracy Chapman's "Fast Car", this is a quality song with a timeless production and great lyrics/performance. If Ed Sheeran can score with songs like "The A Team" I am sure Tracy could have still had a hit with "Fast Car".

Maybe WDC and Kiss could possibly still chart in this era, but even these two Prince iconic songs would sound different and likely 'out of place' at today's Top 40 radio stations. Although -in all honesty- these songs sounded different already when they were released back in the 80's, so who knows?

RIP Prince: thank U 4 a funky Time!
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #14 posted 05/16/17 9:41am

2freaky4church
1

avatar

When Doves Cry.

Cars.

Kiss would tank.

"2freaky is a complete stud." DJ
"2freaky is very down." 2Elijah.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #15 posted 05/16/17 10:19am

MickyDolenz

purplethunder3121 said:

Good point. razz lol

Rap has been the rock music for the younger generations since the 1990s, but I don't see the rapping styles & sounds from the 1980s being mainstream popular now either. Kurtis Blow, Beastie Boys, Tone Loc, Eric B & Rakim, Run DMC, LL Cool J and other hip hop acts popular then won't get airplay with the same songs now. If DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince came out with songs like Parents Just Don't Understand & I Think I Can Beat Mike Tyson today, it's not as likely The Fresh Prince would have gotten a TV show or became a movie star. Dancing rappers are not really a thing now, so there goes the careers of Heavy D & The Boyz, Kid n Play, MC Hammer, Salt n Pepa, Big Daddy Kane, etc.

It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #16 posted 05/16/17 11:00am

Dasein

funkaholic1972 said:

Pfff, not many I am afraid. Times have changed and so have people's preferences and artist's production styles. Maybe WDC and Kiss could possibly still chart in this era, but even these two Prince iconic songs would sound different and likely 'out of place' at today's Top 40 radio stations.


Agreed.

There is not much that is heard on the radio today that is reminiscent of the 80s. Face it, y'all: what is
underscoring this thread is the notion that we are getting old as fuck, and that is the ONLY reason why
we don't like what is played on the radio today. It is fucking IMPOSSIBLE to articulate why something
that is sophisticated, like Joe Jackson's "Stepping Out", is better than something that is not, like DJ
Khaled's "I'm the One".

"More sophisticated" does not inherently mean "better".

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #17 posted 05/16/17 11:23am

NorthC

Sure, we may be getting old as fuck, but do young people still know something about music history? How many 50s/60s songs would have charted in the 1980s? Actually... Quite a few. There were films about Jerry Lee Lewis and Richie Valens that sent Great Balls of Fire and La Bamba back into the charts. Roy Orbison had a hit with You Got It. And he was with The Travelling Wilburys, who also had a hit with Handle With Care. We had BB King playing with U2. Carlos Santana with John Lee Hooker. Gary Moore with Albert King. Even Muddy Waters had a posthumous hit with Manish Boy thanks to a jeans commercial. I heard all of that on the radion when I was 16-18 and that's how I discovered the blues.
Can you imagine radio nowadays with a Katie Perry song followed by a Muddy Waters song?
[Edited 5/16/17 11:27am]
[Edited 5/16/17 11:36am]
Don't ever lose your dreams.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #18 posted 05/16/17 11:30am

MickyDolenz

I think songs like these might have a chance because they could marketed as EDM. But I'm not sure that EDM is as popular on Top 40 radio now as 2 or 3 years ago, trap beats is in now.


It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #19 posted 05/16/17 11:56am

MickyDolenz

NorthC said:

There were films about Jerry Lee Lewis and Richie Valens that sent Great Balls of Fire and La Bamba back into the charts.

Today's equivalent of that is Straight Outta Compton which is currently the highest grossing music biopic. NWA came out in the late 1980s, which is around the same amount of time between those movies and the 1950s when Jerry & Richie were popular. There's also a upcoming Tupac Shakur movie. Ice Cube has a new version of the game show Hollywood Squares called Hip Hop Squares and The Roots is the house band for the Tonight Show now. When Johnny Carson was on it, he had Doc Severinsen, who had a more big band easy listening sound. Also several rappers have become mainstream popular actors in a way Elvis Presley, Madonna, Ringo Starr, & Prince couldn't. Elvis movies made money for awhile, but in most of them he was basically playing himself. Hip hop has influenced American mainstram culture in a way rock didn't as well. Rock sold a lot in the past, but primarily to a certain demographic. AOR stations played few women and non-white acts. Some forms of rock like prog rock & heavy metal had a mainly white male audience. There might have been a large audience that could buy a lot of rock albums or attend their concerts, but technically it was not a mainstream one. A lot of those rock bands didn't have Top 40 airplay like Iron Maiden and Rush. You have to have big hits on the Hot 100 to be mainstream.

It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #20 posted 05/16/17 2:32pm

Dasein

NorthC said:

Sure, we may be getting old as fuck, but do young people still know something about music history? How many 50s/60s songs would have charted in the 1980s? Actually... Quite a few. There were films about Jerry Lee Lewis and Richie Valens that sent Great Balls of Fire and La Bamba back into the charts. Roy Orbison had a hit with You Got It. And he was with The Travelling Wilburys, who also had a hit with Handle With Care. We had BB King playing with U2. Carlos Santana with John Lee Hooker. Gary Moore with Albert King. Even Muddy Waters had a posthumous hit with Manish Boy thanks to a jeans commercial. I heard all of that on the radion when I was 16-18 and that's how I discovered the blues. Can you imagine radio nowadays with a Katie Perry song followed by a Muddy Waters song? [Edited 5/16/17 11:27am] [Edited 5/16/17 11:36am]


Excellent points, North. But you forgot one thing that I've iterated and Funkaholic did too:

Times have changed; the general populace's taste has changed in addition to the compositional
and production and artistic values of songwriters, recording artists, and producers. Maybe this
generation does not look back onto the past as fondly or as wistfully as we did and our parents
did.

Just because things are different does not mean they are better/worse. It just means, sometimes,
that things are different.

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #21 posted 05/17/17 8:08am

namepeace

Dasein said:

Shawy89 said:

Billie Jean comes to mind as it's the definition of a timeless record cool

What'dya think?


I seriously doubt that songs from the 80s, even the "good ones", would be as successful today as they were yesterday. The proof is in the music that is charting currently which hardly carries any similarities in terms of genre, compositional/production values, etc. with what was charting back then.

The compositional and production values heard in these songs ae not what is popular today.


That said, Daft Punk, Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake and others have hit big in recent years with songs reminiscent of the production values of the 80's. And the production values of the 80's songs would have likely been calibrated to present production values.

The major hitmakers of the 80's paid close attention to the sounds of their day and honed their hits accordingly. They would have done no differently in the 2010's.

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #22 posted 05/17/17 10:03am

MotownSubdivis
ion

avatar

namepeace said:



Dasein said:




Shawy89 said:


Billie Jean comes to mind as it's the definition of a timeless record cool



What'dya think?




I seriously doubt that songs from the 80s, even the "good ones", would be as successful today as they were yesterday. The proof is in the music that is charting currently which hardly carries any similarities in terms of genre, compositional/production values, etc. with what was charting back then.

The compositional and production values heard in these songs ae not what is popular today.




That said, Daft Punk, Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake and others have hit big in recent years with songs reminiscent of the production values of the 80's. And the production values of the 80's songs would have likely been calibrated to present production values.

The major hitmakers of the 80's paid close attention to the sounds of their day and honed their hits accordingly. They would have done no differently in the 2010's.

:yeahthat:

I see the 1980s as a glitzier, more colorful incarnation of the 1960s as they were.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #23 posted 05/17/17 11:52am

Dasein

MotownSubdivision said:

namepeace said:


That said, Daft Punk, Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake and others have hit big in recent years with songs reminiscent of the production values of the 80's. And the production values of the 80's songs would have likely been calibrated to present production values.

The major hitmakers of the 80's paid close attention to the sounds of their day and honed their hits accordingly. They would have done no differently in the 2010's.

yeahthat I see the 1980s as a glitzier, more colorful incarnation of the 1960s as they were.


I would like for you to unpack this: how are the 80s a more colorful incarnation of the 60s?

And NP, of course there are going to be contemporary tunesmiths who look nostalgically upon the
compositional and production values of yesterday, but I'd ask that you refer to the list I provided
from Billboard: the same week that Michael Jackson released "Billie Jean" in January 1983, {since
that song was referenced in the OP} there are other songs with compositional and production values
that are mostly dissimilar to modern day pop songwriting conventions.


  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #24 posted 05/17/17 12:09pm

NorthC

What I miss in today's popular music are bands. Groups of people jamming in the basement and learning the skills of playing and writing... Toay I only hear producers and DJs and concepts... I guess that's another sign o' the times... If James Brown or Bob Dylan auditioned on Idols, no way in hell they would make it... Music has become a trick... a product... I can't really blame Prince for wanting to get away from that...
Don't ever lose your dreams.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #25 posted 05/17/17 12:14pm

NorthC

Now let's see if anyone picked up the Judith Hill reference in my post... wink
Don't ever lose your dreams.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #26 posted 05/17/17 12:57pm

namepeace

Dasein said:

MotownSubdivision said:

namepeace said: yeahthat I see the 1980s as a glitzier, more colorful incarnation of the 1960s as they were

And NP, of course there are going to be contemporary tunesmiths who look nostalgically upon the compositional and production values of yesterday, but I'd ask that you refer to the list I provided from Billboard: the same week that Michael Jackson released "Billie Jean" in January 1983, {since that song was referenced in the OP} there are other songs with compositional and production values that are mostly dissimilar to modern day pop songwriting conventions.


Nostalgia plays a role, of course, but that would reduce some of the biggest hits to novelty aberrations. The more plausible explanation is that key elements of signature 80's sounds persist in today's music. Which is why the artists behind those signature sounds would find their hits enjoying similar success today.

And I think your reference to "Billie Jean" actually reinforces the point -- many if not most 80's hits may not translate well to 2010's audiences. But there are those few standout, iconic songs that would. And it's no accident most of them were made by the biggest stars of the time.

But I think critics are even calling into question the premise that 80's and 70's pop doesn't translate well in 2017. A recent Salon article makes the case that the work of today's major pop artists find their roots in the soft rock/"yacht rock" sounds of the late 70's and early 80's.

twocents

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #27 posted 05/17/17 1:22pm

MickyDolenz

namepeace said:

And I think your reference to "Billie Jean" actually reinforces the point -- many if not most 80's hits may not translate well to 2010's audiences. But there are those few standout, iconic songs that would. And it's no accident most of them were made by the biggest stars of the time.

Yeah, but like I mentioned with Elvis, they put out remixes with currently popular acts to get new audiences to buy it.

The entire Michael & Xscape albums are another sign of this. They didn't release the original mixes as the albums, but Xscape has a deluxe version that does have the original versions. As a single, a duet (and music video) with Justin Timberlake was released and that is what I heard played on the radio. Michael has been accused of having 3 songs that are not even sung by Mike. Motown also released a remix album of Jackson 5 era stuff a few years ago.


It's called show business for a reason. It’s 90% business and 10% show. If you don’t know your business, you’re in trouble! ~ Johnnie Taylor
Each generation has their music that they fall in love with, that makes it special to them ~ Ralph Tresvant
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #28 posted 05/17/17 3:15pm

MotownSubdivis
ion

avatar

Dasein said:



MotownSubdivision said:


namepeace said:



That said, Daft Punk, Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake and others have hit big in recent years with songs reminiscent of the production values of the 80's. And the production values of the 80's songs would have likely been calibrated to present production values.

The major hitmakers of the 80's paid close attention to the sounds of their day and honed their hits accordingly. They would have done no differently in the 2010's.



yeahthat I see the 1980s as a glitzier, more colorful incarnation of the 1960s as they were.


I would like for you to unpack this: how are the 80s a more colorful incarnation of the 60s?

Let's look at the facts:

-The 60's introduced an influx of UK acts to the US with the British Invasion. The 80's did the same with the Second British Invasion.

-The 60's saw black music go mainstream on a major, recognizable scale with the likes of Motown, setting the stage for the 70's where R&B, soul, funk and disco were prevailing genres. The 80's started off with mostly white acts receiving the lion's share of the spotlight but as black artists began to be thrust back onto center stage, the music scene became diverse again. Just like the 60's set the stage for black music to be huge in the 70's, the 80's set the stage for black music, namely R&B and hip hop to be dominant genres in the 90's.

-Many artists who would go on to define the 80's were born or were kids in the 60's and grew up on Motown and the British Invasion. It stands to reason that many of them were influenced by the sounds of their childhood and you can hear it in their music. Many British acts in particular wore the influence of black music on the sleeve (Phil Collins, George Michael, etc.).

To sum it up, black and British acts were major forces for both musical eras; in both cases, black acts had to cross over to appeal to the mainstream [white] audience with pop music steeped in soul and R&B but were able to succeed with the pure incarnations of which by decade's end. British acts set the stage by introducing new musical techniques and genres which define their respective decades(a different variation of rock/pop in the 60's and new wave/synth-pop in the 80's). There's also the fact that the music video medium was discovered in the 1960s and of course was revolutionized in the 1980s.

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #29 posted 05/17/17 3:55pm

214

We never know, what or what not could be a hit nowadays.

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Page 1 of 3 123>
  New topic   Printable     (Log in to 'subscribe' to this topic)
« Previous topic  Next topic »
Forums > Music: Non-Prince > 80s songs that would smash today?