Wolfgang Palm the father of PPG and Wavetable synthesis added some 80s videos to his YouTube channel. I really love the one above which shows him at work. You can see the care that went into making the PPGs and it’s in no doubt many are still working today. The accompanying music is also great!
“PPG Company 1984, Production, 10 year anniversary celebration music by Michael Wehr 2009 and from PPG-demo 1983” – Wolfgang Palm
How about some Russian synthpop from 1984? This is the band Forum and their song Let’s Call Each Other. It’s good to know while our governments each had hundreds of nukes aimed at each other most of us were doing far more important things such as synthing out.
“USSR: utterly sick synthesizer rhythms” – Jack Saba (Youtube)
In the video above you see the emerging dance scene in NYC. If you ever listen New Order’s Confusion and thought wow this is well produced and really works well in a nightclub now you can know the reason. Producer Arthur Baker tells how he tested the track in club specifically to sound good there. At that time most music heard even in clubs had melody and lyrics. At 13:58 in the reporter amazingly has an epic thought and asks Baker if he thinks if eventually dance music will just be rhythmic without vocals or melody. He knew the future!
“The other question is what would be the next? Because things are becoming more and more rhythmic. Do you think we will end up with just complete rhythm records with no melody whatsoever?”
I have a huge box of cassettes I recorded off NYC radio in the 1980s. Hands down some of the most cherished are the Latin Rascals mixes. They took hundreds of tracks and mixed them in such an amazing musical and technical way. I used to play basketball and swim to this stuff everyday after high school. Even though it may not be apparent my own music is heavily influenced by these tracks. Hearing this is just a reminder I have to somehow convert my cassettes to digital ASAP. This stuff is the soundtrack of classic NY.
“As far as trends in DJ Culture go, New York always was light years ahead of anyone else on the planet. This mix changed everything – Latin Rascals – 1984 – I remember hearing it and that was it for me, it’s never been topped actually.” – Frankie Bones
“Albert Cabrera and Tony Moran (collectively known as the Latin Rascals) got their start as movers and shakers on the budding early’80s New York City club scene, hosting an influential continuous-mix show on local danceradio. The duo went on to become the most in-demand editing and remixing teams in the record business. The Latin Rascals also masterminded the Latin freestyle dance scene, including work for TKA , Sa-Fire and The Cover Girls…among others. The Latin Rascals were also artists for two albums released on Polydor records.” – rascaltunes.com
Spend two hours in the UK. The year is 1984 and your friends are wear black.
“this film has been rescued from an old mildewed-and-damaged VHS cassette tape so the quality in the first few minutes is pretty poor, but it settles down fine just in time for the action inside the club itself. The original video was commissioned by the couple who ran the club (Annie and Pete Swallow) and was distributed amongst family, friends and people who frequented it. I can’t remember if there was a charge for it at the time [thanks to the commenter who told us it was £2], probably was. This is the complete full length video as originally presented.” – Patrick Torsney
I’m not sure what to say here. This is from 1984. There was probably cocaine involved. Imagine we build a time machine and the first place we shoot back to is this precious moment. If you know me you know I’m not being sarcastic. I love this. I’m on eBay looking for a turquoise shirt like the hosts right now.
“I scored this “big box” VHS at a video store liquidation sale for a dollar. Quite possibly the best dollar I’ve ever spent.” – smashism
I was 14 when I saw the 1984 Grammy’s and Herbie Hancock perform Rockit. It’s as fresh today as is was then. When I say fresh I mean FRESH. It wasn’t long before every suburban kid had pin-striped Lee’s and Shell Toe Adidas with fat laces (including me). Thanks to Laughing Squid for posting this and reminding me how great it was/is!
“In 1983, Hancock had a mainstream hit with the Grammy-award winning instrumental single “Rockit” from the album Future Shock. It was perhaps the first mainstream single to feature scratching, and also featured an innovative animated music video which was directed by Godley and Creme and showed several robot-like artworks by Jim Whiting. The video was a hit on MTV. The video won 5 different categories at the inaugural MTV Video Music Awards. This single ushered in a collaboration with noted bassist and producer Bill Laswell. Hancock experimented with electronic music on a string of three LPs produced by Laswell: Future Shock (1983), Sound-System (1984) and Perfect Machine (1988). Despite the success of “Rockit”, Hancock’s trio of Laswell-produced albums (particularly the latter two) are among the most critically derided of his entire career, perhaps even more so than his erstwhile pop-jazz experiments. Hancock’s level of actual contribution to these albums was also questioned, with some critics contending that the Laswell albums should have been labelled “Bill Laswell featuring Herbie Hancock”.” – Wikipedia.org