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'Rolling Stone' Is Just Wrong

Rolling Stone has great writers and the political commentary is usually amazing, but man, when it comes to music the editors and a majority of readers are just insane.

The magazine asked its readers to vote in an online poll for the worst songs of the ’80s. Starship's "We Built This City" came in at number one, but Europe's "The Final Countdown" was a close second. And it's not Glam, but "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" by Wham! made the top 10, too which is absurd. Here's the full list:

01 – Starship – We Built This City
02 – Europe – The Final Countdown
03 – Chris De Burgh – Lady In Red
04 – Wham! – Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go
05 – Men Without Hats – The Safety Dance
06 – Falco – Rock Me Amadeus
07 – Bobby McFerrin – Don't Worry Be Happy
08 – Toni Basil – Mickey
09 – Taco – Puttin On The Ritz
10 – Rick Astley – Never Gonna Give You Up

There's a lot of really good songs here, yes? I don't remember the Falco song, so I guess I'll let that one slide. And the Taco song is bizarre, but still. A vast majority of these songs were hits - like all the way to #1 - type of hit. And Starship was cool. There. I said it.


Reader Comments (13)

All GREAT songs when comparing the era. Sorry but the 80's were FUN!!!!! The majority of people reading ROllin Stone (I subscribe) can't remember (were not old enough or were doing too much coke) the decadence and pure genuine party time it really was.

Granted, some of those songs are total cheese and some may not like 'em, but ya can't deny the lightheartedness that predominates the list.

This vote in a way encapsulates how fucked up the psyche of this country is in. Everywhere (globally)you look there is trouble; financial, housing, climate, jobs, healthcare, quality of life.

The country could probably use a good dose of 80's glam and this list for that matter to put things in perspective for such fucked up times we are in.

People better wake up. Not gettin better.

With that, I shall now crank "Talk Dirty To Me" and through the lyrics, re-live my teenage years and a time where things were better. A little deep for Saturday; sorry fellow glamsters.

Keep the faith!!!!!!
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKixchix
fyi.........."Talk DIrty To Me" worked. My 7 & 5 years old and I bopped around the kitchen, silly and fun.....just like the 80's
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKixchix
I like those songs on that list.
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterbrian L
To be honest, I absolutely HATED "The Final Countdown" when it first hit the radio. "Too many keys!", I thought, regarding the cheesy opening. Then again, I LOVED "Carrie" cuz I've always been a sucker for a great Power Ballad.

Through the prism of time, however, I have softened my view of "The Final Countdown". In fact, I kinda like it, despite it's maximum "cheese factor". But in all reality, I can only take it in limited doses. I might hear it 5 times a year, these days, in bars, on 'Hair Nation', if it pops up on "Metalmania", or if I pass out before I can press the 'skip' button on my iTunes.

I always liked Tony Basil's "Mickey" and always thought that would make a killarious cover for an all chick "Metal" band like Precious Metal or The Pandoras, the latter a perfect fit for it cuz they were more of a 'Pop Metal' outfit.

The rest of the stuff on the list I kinda agree with, tho I think many of the songs' videos were kinda cool, and still do, in a retro-ish kinda way.

p.s. A shout out to the Nirvanas, Kiki Chrome, Mom2Ross, Xandra and all the other fab BBG!er's out there we haven't heard from in a while. This would be a perfect topic for you kidz to comment on! We miss ya on here, you crazy Glametalerz, you!
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
"Rolling Stone has great writers and the political commentary is usually amazing, but man, when it comes to music the editors and a majority of readers are just insane."

With all due respect to you Allyson, Rolling Stone magazine is insane on all their views. The 80's were the end of the party and they weren't invited back then or now. How much good new music does R.S. pick up on? They are all about "intelligent" music, not the stuff us neanderthals like. :)
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterguitarmike
"We Built This City" has been listed as the worst for so long on so many lists that I think voting for it is a knee jerk reaction for some people. That said, I think the song and Starship are pretty awful, mostly because Jefferson Airplane was so incredible. Sorry, but I don't like "The Final Countdown" either.
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSean
Rolling S$%t had Eddie Van Halen at #70 behind both radiohead guitars on the top 100 guitarists of all time.Randy Rhoads was 82 and Iommi was 83. Hendrix was number one. I care less than nothing for any list these dipshits come up with.That said worst song of the 80s. Pacman's magic land off the pacman album look it up this actually exists. LOL
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShadow
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterfletch
October 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
Metalboy! is back on the cogent case, making it fun to read again. Punchy and on point.

But KixChix got me thinking. As of this past Spring, the median age of the magazine's readership is 32, with males (58%) making up the majority of the readership even as general readership skews to white, single, college-educated, homeowners. I leave it you to reach your own conclusions based on those figures (they tilt towards several stereotypes in several different directions).

But it stands to reason that said readership represents a cross-section of interested (they actually bothered to vote) listeners who span several of the genres that were popular at the time: rap, metal, electronic, etc.

That most of the listed songs could be classified as one hit wonders (not again!) suggests readers either picking outside their own comfort zones or referencing songs that had some cross-over appeal at the time. That most of the song err on the side of radio friendly rotations at the time and YouTube scorn now (and are recycled from other lists going back at least ten years) only furthers this notion.

Collective memory is a bugger. Retrospective sense-making ain't a science. And polls are designed to generate a response. Mission accomplished.

Carry on (still Him, not Fletch).
October 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHim

you once wrote that your ultimate goal was to be hired by rolling stone. do you think this will happen now?

gary w gorman
October 9, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterfletch
Critics at Rolling Stone habitually prioritize political leanings, concert stagecraft (of the "artsy" type - think David Bowie and Peter Gabriel, not Alice Cooper or Kiss) and experimentation-for-its-own-sake over other considerations, such as, to take one example, fun. This is why Rolling Stone has generally held metal (and its antecedents, notably Sabbath and Zeppelin) in such disdain. It's why they were happy to see the 80's metal era end and the 90's grunge and alternarock era begin. Nirvana fit nicely into their editorial prejudices; Motley Crue did not. Unfortunately for Rolling Stone, the vast majority of people listen to music for enjoyment, for dancing, for rocking out, anything other than being told how to vote, or listening to some shrill harpy scream tuneless ditties with "edgy" lyrics".

That said, having grown up mostly in the 80's (they encompassed my high school and college years completely), I can say with authority that the music that reigned then mostly just sucked. Just listen to the catalog of any rock band, or any funk band, that spanned the 70s a and 80s -- something just horrible happens to their sound somewhere around 1982. The drums lose their kick and producers add in the tinniest-sounding synthesizers. I mean, I don't mind keyboards most of the time, but 80's keyboards were awful. So the novelty songs and one-hit wonders of the 80s are even more dated than those of other eras. And that's what makes up most of this list.

Jefferson Airplane was a typically overrated band that Rolling Stone used to like, which turned into the vapid pop band that sang the utterly joyless "We built this city on rock and roll", without either rocking or rolling. They richly deserve that #1 spot. Some of the other tracks, I will admit, are in my collection, but I have enough perspective to recognize them for what they are -- artifacts of an era we will hopefully never need to revist. Let's put it this way -- there's been something of an 80's pop revival underway in the indie scene for the past few years, and those modern copycats do it 10X better than the originals ever did, with rare exceptions, mostly due to the updated production alone.

As for Europe, they're one of my least favorite 80's hair metal acts. Among the wimpiest of the bunch, with few redeeming values. If pop metal is to have an entry on this list, it might as well be them.
October 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterM.
Just realized something.......There should be a madonna song on this list. idk which one but it think there should be. lol Oh and just a throw another name out.....Milli Vanilli anyone???? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
October 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShadow

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