Friday, March 12, 2010

1978 - 1979


3-12-10 1978 – 1979


I spent all of 1978 and 1979 working in a record store / record distributor; in the fall of 1979, I went to England and Europe for the first time.


A Certain Ratio – The Graveyard & The Ballroom

Althea & Donna – Uptown Top Ranking

Black Randy – Pass The Dust, I Think I’m Bowie

Black Sabbath – Never Say Die

Boys Next Door – Hee Haw (EP)

Kate Bush – The Kick Inside

John Cale – Sabotage

Citizen Band – s/t

John Cooper Clarke – Disguise In Love

Holger Czukay – Movies

The Damned – Machine Gun Etiquette

Ian Dury & The Blockheads – Do It Yourself

Marianne Faithfull – Broken English

Gang Of Four – Entertainment!

Philip Glass – Einstein On The Beach

Godley & Crème – L, Freeze Frame

Gruppo Sportivo – Back To 78, The Buddy Odor Stop

Peter Hammill – The Future Now, ph7

Hawkwind – Quark Strangeness & Charm

Hugh Hopper – Monster Band

Neil Innes – Innes Book of Records

Japan – Quiet Life

Nick Lowe – The Jesus Of Cool

Madness – One Step Beyond

Magazine – Real Life, Secondhand Daylight

Phil Manzanera – K-Scope

Mi-Sex – Grafitti Crimes

Anthony Moore – Flying Doesn’t Help

The Nits – Tent

Gary Numan / Tubeway Army – Replicas

Mike Oldfield – Platinum

Orchid Spangiafora – Flee Past’s Ape Elf

Le Orme – Florian

John Otway – Where Did I Go Right? (Neil Innes, prod.)

Hermeto Pascoal – Zabumbe-Bum-A

Annette Peacock – X-Dreams

P-Model – In A Model Room

Punishment of Luxury – Laughing Academy

Steve Reich – Music for 18 Musicians

The Rutles – s/t

Sad Café – Fanx Ta’ra

Simple Minds – Real to Real Cacophony

The Slits – Cut

Transister – Zig-Zag (Robert-Jan Stips)

The Stranglers – The Raven

Rachel Sweet – Fool Around

Tin Huey – Contents Dislodged During Shipment

Ultravox – Systems of Romance

Verto – Reel 19.36

Wire – 154

Trevor Wishart – Beach Singularity & The Menagerie

XTC – White Music, Go 2

Y.M.O. – Y.M.O., Solid State Survivor

Frank Zappa – Joe’s Garage, Sheik Yerbouti


These were the records that got me up to the 80’s. You can see the effects of having worked in a distribution office – I was exposed to many things. I was mail-ordering records, too.


And while I was definitely checking out the punk rock / new wave – I still spent a lot of time listening to 60’s records and “the end of progressive rock” (which I feel should be appropriately bookmarked as ending in 1977 with Goblin’s “Suspiria”).


Also just recently heard Gang Of Four’s 2CD set of re-makes and remixes. Odd.


Are any of your own favorite records on this list? Were you lucky enough to have heard them before January 1st, 1980?


10 comments:

REVO said...

Lots of collectible artists there, but I lived in Florida. I was Johnny-come-lately to most of them.
Artist/1st heard what/where/when
ACR/Knife In Water/Pandora (online)/2006
Kate Bush/Them Heavy People/SNL/1978
John Cale/Fear/CD/1996
Marianne Faithfull/Broken English/college radio/1979
Japan/Ain't That Peculiar version 2/Cash Cows LP/1980
Ian Dury/"Hit Me"/radio/1979
Gang Of Four /Anthrax/college radio/1981
Nick Lowe/Cruel To Be Kind/radio/1979
Madness/One Step Beyond/video/1980
Magazine/The Correct Use Of Soap/LP/1980
MiSex/Computer Games/video/1980
The Nits/The Young Reporter/Steppin Into The 80s LP/1981
Gary Numan/Are ""Friends" Electric?/radio/1979
Mike Oldfield/Tubular Bells/environment/late 70s
The Rutles/I Must be in Love/SNL/1978
Simple Minds/Sweat In Bullet/2x7"/1981
The Slits/I Heard It Through The Grapevine/college radio/1980
The Stranglers/Tank/No Wave LP/1978
Rachel Sweet/Fool Around/CD/1991
Ultravox/Passing Strangers/video/1980
Wire/Ahead/video/1985
XTC/Making Plans For Nigel/video/1980
YMO/Computer Games/urban radio/1979
Frank Zappa/I'm Slime/SNL/1976


Favorite records? Certainly a few. I didn't hear Systems Of Romance until Spring of 1981 but it blows me away still. In some ways, more than ever. I didn't hear The Raven until it came out on CD and I bought it from USS&M! I was more familiar with "IV" on IRS but that's not really hearing "The Raven," is it? I still haven't heard "classic" Wire. I should, I know. I like all of the modern and solo stuff I have; quite a lot. XTC wasn't love at first hear. I didn't care for Nigel at first. It was only when I heard Generals & Majors that I bit the hook.

I like this who/what/where/when concept. Possibly a blog unto itself?

Ron Kane said...

On 3/25, I will post your list and my "responses". Good idea, Jim-san.

Brian Ware said...

Wow, having never kept meticulous records of record purchases, I have to roll down memory lane unassisted. As Jim says, Florida was still Southern Rock nirvana so no mainstream radio exposure for music like this, and being out of college I wasn't inclined to listen to college radio at that point of my life.

It all came together in bits and pieces. I did not have cable TV at all during the 80s. Most of my exposure would have been Saturday Night Live, a late night UHF video show called "Hollywood Heartbeat" hosted by Bob Welch, and then finally catching on that local college radio WPRK was playing this amazing music each evening. Orlando's magnificent Record City, magazines like Trouser Press and locally produced indie mags all were part of the equation, but I probably wasn't totally immersed until 1980-81.

Brian Ware said...

Re: the bookend for progressive rock

I've always considered that to be the debut LP by U.K. in 1978. I really love that record. The follow-up was totally lame - more or less the prototype for the bloated beast that became Asia, but that debut really sizzled.

Ron Kane said...

I consider "UK" to be post-progressive (neo-progressive) - they were only in it for the money, I think. I like it OK now, but in '78 / '79 - it didn't fly with me.

REVO said...

I've never heard UK. The 1st album has a classic KC rhythm section. Can anything with Bruford really suck? I don't think so. Terry Bozzio - different story! I do remember hearing FM rock radio ads for "Danger Money" when it was released. Orlando was indeed southern rock hell, so the only way to hear them on the radio was for Polydor to buy ad space! But I can see where the whole Asia/opportunism thing could get bandied about. Talented players from great bands scamming for payout. I bought the Asia album before hearing it and after one listen got that thing out of my house immediately!! For free!!!! As I recall, I gave it to an acquaintance who was a Rush fan.

REVO said...

My personal progrok bookend is Black Noise, by the CanadianFM. Sci-fi lyrics, 10 minute songs, "jazz-fusion" and my gosh - it didn't suck! I still enjoy the hell outta that 1977 album.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Noise_(album)

No guitars - only mandolins!!!! Wicked synth sequencing and only a few stray noises that embarrass 32 years later.

Ron Kane said...

FM = Canadian. Didn't that band also contain Mr. "Nash The Slash"? I saw him open for somebody once.

I think I liked prog rock beginning with a point that it was "underground music" (1970/1 or so) and ending as soon as I detected it was being catered to (J.e.m. having a custom label for re-issues etc. that had FM on it).

We can all differ about when it ended; I think one's take on it depended on when you started liking it.

For many people, it's Yes "Fragile" and for even more, it's "Dark Side Of The Moon". For me, it was likely K.C. "In The Court Of The Crimson King", which I first encountered in 1970.

7 years is long enough for any genre / sub-genre, as far as I am concerned. The dance is about change.

Brian Ware said...

While Orlando radio was a wasteland with new wave, it wasn't like that for progressive rock. We had an "underground" FM station (WORJ) that played whole album sides and imports. I don't remember the exact ground zero moment for my prog fandom, but that had to have been how I heard things like ELP and Yes. I remember that I did ELP, King Crimson, and Genesis pretty much in real time. I distinctly remember reading somewhere (probably Circus magazine) about "Nursery Cryme" and buying it when it was new. Seems like I also became a member of a record club at that time. Remember the offers to get a bunch of records for a few bucks and then having to buy a certain number at X dollars each? I don't remember the details but it was a decent deal and I'm sure I experimented with a bunch of prog titles as well.

Jim, "Danger Money" could not be more far removed from the U.K. debut. Not only Bruford and Wetton, but Alan Holdsworth's guitar work is stunning. Highly recommended!!

Warren Bowman said...

I heard a *lot* of these records at the time, mostly thanks to you, Ron. Off the top of my head, the Dury album still kicks my ass.