Feb 162012
Authors: Emily Luft

I wrote a column once about why Chris Brown sucks, but the Grammy’s didn’t listen. They went ahead and asked Chris Brown and Rihanna to perform. Then, they gave Chris Brown his own Grammy. How sweet of them. Truly charming! Let’s talk about something else.

In light of Whitney Houston’s death last weekend, I thought it was fitting to write a column about her type of music. I know it’s been a week and the media has covered her passing in great detail, but I love Whitney’s music. And I’m no posthumous bandwagoner — I’m a legitimate fan. I listened to her a ton as a kid via cassette tape and late-night radio remixes, courtesy of my mom.

Now, as an adult, when I’m in Old Town, I request songs by her (and Janet Jackson) — so far to no avail.

That joyful pop sound she brought resonates with me as an overall theme for ‘80s pop music. I want to dance with somebody, somebody who loves me. And I want to do that to awesome music. Something about that music filled people with a sort of energy.

Have you watched any music videos from that decade? Everyone was constantly dancing in the street! I want to dance in the street! I want to grab my five neon shades of eye shadow and my ghetto blaster and jam out on the pavement. But now, when I hear this auto-tuned music, I feel like I’m confined to dark bars.

You know what? I wish I heard more old tunes out on the town in general. I strongly believe we should bring older music back to the dance floor. You college kids are a barhopping people. Bar culture is prevalent in Old Town, Fort Collins. New music is great, and it’s up to folks like DJs to spread the news of up-and-coming artists. It’s also important for DJs to stay up on their game, keep with the trends, etc.

But drunk people don’t want to be surprised by new music. They want something loud, and they want something they know the words to.

There is no better kind of music to fulfill that need than songs from the past. Do you know how much music is back there that we don’t hear anymore? I feel like the only song that keeps popping back up in the bars is that Sir Mix-a-Lot song, “Baby Got Back.” As great as that song was in high school… we can do better. Everyone loves to pretend they know all the words to that song, but lets face it friends: We only know the first verse.

Now when I say “old music,” I’m talking disco, funk, ‘80s one-hit-wonders: Cyndi Lauper, AC/DC, Prince, Ace of Base, Chaka Khan, Motown… heck, drop that beat “The Twist” by Chubby Checker (major throwback!). “Mad Men” is totally vogue right now. People like the ‘50s and ‘60s! There are a lot of party-rocking songs out there that aren’t on Kiss FM. Dig up those jams.
For any non-believers, here are some reasons why old music is awesome:

Unnecessarily loud drum beats that sound like they were recorded in a gymnasium, 80’s music videos are CRAZY colorful, Phil Collins, key changes so powerful they will change your worldview (see: Whitney Houston “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” at 3:14), Prince has his own gender sign, consistent use of the word “boogie” and “oogie,” brass sections, back-up singers that repeat what the singer just sang and funk-specific words like “Fopp.”

Those are some pretty compelling reasons if I do say so myself. So how about some of you business majors open a nice discotech and we’ll do this thing?

Personally, I’d love to hear a dubstep remix of Rick James. Any takers? Seriously, I can’t keep requesting Janet Jackson’s “Nasty” by myself, or I’ll get kicked out of all the bars in Fort Collins. Who is with me?

New music is important, refreshing, progressive and relevant, but come on. I don’t want to wear my go-go boots to dance to Pitbull.

Emily Luft is a junior journalism major. She can be reached at letters@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 3:47 pm

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