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9 Super Songs from 1981

9 Super Songs from 1981

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As we cant get out at the moment to play our live music in Bournemouth we have been viewing our favourite 1980s hits on youtube. This is Part Three of the Pudenski Brothers look at Hits of the 1980s, this article is focussed on 9 Super Songs from 1981 if you want to take a look at Part Two of our look at Hits of the 1980s, where we identified 10 Fantastic Songs From 1980 or get yourself in the Christmas mood in Part One where we took a look at the festive season so we take a good look at UK Christmas hits of the 1980s with some festive favourites.

This is the third article in the Pudenski Brothers series where we take a look at some popular songs from the 1980s. The Pudenski Brothers are a Bournemouth Band who play in the local This time we take a look at 9 Super Songs from 1981 followed by the top 100 UK hits of 1981.

Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative government brought in sweeping changes aiming to promote capitalism in Britain, and this gave a boost to entrepreneurs including those in the creative industries, like fashion and music. If you were watching television in 1981 you may have been limited on the number of channels compared to today, but impressed by some of the quality (Music Television MTV, launched this year on August 1, 1981). If you had BBC 1 on you may have come across your first taste of Nelson Mandela House, Peckham South London with the John Sullivan classic Only Fools and Horses staring David Jason as market trader Derek 'Del Boy' Trotter and his younger brother played by Nicholas Lyndhurst as Rodney Trotter. The situation focuses mainly on their attempts to become millionaires through questionable get rich quick schemes and by buying and selling poor-quality and illegal goods.

delboy and rodney trotters independant trading reliant robinTrotters Independent Trading

In the News, we had animal issues in March in Southern Hampshire and the Isle of Wight with new measures introduced to contain the farm disease foot and mouth. The 'Gang of Four' were launching their new Social Democrats political party. The gang of four were four Labour defectors who set up the SDP and included Roy Jenkins, David Owen, William Rogers and Shirley Williams. Guns were in the news where President Reagan is shot and wounded after a lone gunman opened fire in Washington, Pope John Paul II was shot four times as he blessed the crowds in St Peter's Square culminating in a 17-year-old man arrested for shooting a replica gun at the Queen as she rode past crowds on horseback.

1981 also saw a royal wedding with Charles and Dianna marrying in July of this year, a CND rally attracted More than 250,000 people who marched through London to protest over the siting of nuclear missiles in the UK and fears were growing in the United States around A mysterious epidemic, which had been discovered in homosexual men. The unknown condition, which consists of two separate diseases - a form of pneumonia and skin cancer. Three studies in the New England Journal of Medicine identified that the immune systems of victims were severely weakened, leaving them vulnerable to serious infections from germs which most people normally shrug off. The unknown condition was eventually named as Aids (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) virus. Cases of Aids were also discovered among heterosexuals, drug users and blood transfusion patients. It would be 1983 before The virus which was isolated as the cause of the disease was called Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).

American imports also featured heavily on the TV in 1981 with Hill Street Blues, Dynasty and Cagney and Lacey all UK favourites in this year.

Fashion in the 1980s was about materialistic values and flaunting wealth. Having the right clothes meant spending extra money to buy designer labels and sports goods with a brand logo. The early 80s were somewhat subdued in colour, where we remember a lot of browns and tans and oranges. Blocky shapes were everywhere and dressing like a tennis player was the cool thing to do thanks to Ivan Lendl. Also in sport, March 1981 saw approximately seven thousand runners participating in the first 26 mile London Marathon. Thousands of spectators cheered on Dick Beardsley and Inge Simonsen crossing the line at the same time for the male race and Joyce Smith celebrated success in the female race. There was lots of focus on the space race in April 1981, NASA launched the very first space shuttle mission, the space shuttle Columbia successfully carried astronauts Robert Crippen and John Young into space completing the inaugural flight of the Space Shuttle program. 

1981 riots in the uk1981 Saw Riots in The UK

Fashion is important because it raises the quality of life when people take the trouble to dress well and it also provides employment for many, many people

Margaret Thatcher Political Speech

It was between April and July in 1981, England suffered from serious riots across many major cities. Perceived as race riots between communities, the main motives were related to racial tension and inner-city deprivation. The riots were caused by a distrust of the police and authority. Riots occurred in areas Brixton in London, Toxteth in Liverpool, Handsworth riots in Birmingham, Chapeltown in Leeds, Moss Side in Manchester. 1981 was also the year identified as the year when the AIDS epidemic officially began. 1981 was also the year of a royal wedding when Lady Diana Spencer married Charles The Prince of Wales. More than anything, eighties music was heavily produced. Everyone knows the classic 80s sound: huge reverb snare drums, lots of delay on the vocals, electronic rhythms and synthesizers.

moog synthesise 1981Moog synthesiser 

Fashion Designers got extremely inventive with pants. Armani, Valentino and other introduced creative shapes like balloon pants, breeches, Bermuda shorts and styles that were puffy around the hips and tapered around the ankles, legwarmers and slogan tee shirts. Just about everyone wore an LCD digital watch in 1981, and the more functions they had the better. Permed hair and mini skirts were highly popular. Leather, denim and shiny lycra were often the material of choice. If you were driving a car go faster stripes were popular with boy racers, with the Ford Escort XR3, XR3i and Fiesta XR2 often being the vehicle of choice. 1980s fashion had quite a fascination with what the young royals – especially the newly married Princess Diana – and their rich friends on Sloane Street were wearing.

For the first time ever musicians were regularly paying with a “click-track”, or metronome. Because many 80s instruments were synced via MIDI, it was very important that the backing tracks (typically rhythm) were recorded in perfect tempo.