Saturday, December 10, 2011

Remember the '80s, Rock Hall? Cars, Go-Go's should be in

You might think we're crazy, but The Cars should be in the Hall.
News of the Hall's recent inductions have sunk in here at CDNR Headquarters - we talked Bertha out of taking a dump on the Rock Hall's steps, stopped Bifferado from lighting all of his music on fire and convinced Waldodude to not cut his ears off and eat them on a ham sandwich.

We've agreed that the actual bands and artists chosen aren't that bad; our ire has more to do with the fact that, once again, worthy bands and even entire genres have been passed over in favor of Rolling Stone Approved Bands (i.e., bands that have a guaranteed 4 star reviewed for every album they put out). We're saving a post on Rush until we find someone more qualified to write it up, and we really need to wind up for our Mega-Post on Kiss getting the shaft.

Clearly, the Hall has moved into the 1980s, but instead of starting with New Wave and the dawn of MTV, Hall voters sidestepped the question of keyboards and a return to pop-rock and went right to the middle and later part of the decade.

What about The Cars?

Let's look at the stats:

- 16 singles charted higher than No. 50 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles charts, including a No. 3 (the super-smash ballad "Drive") and a No. 4 (all-time great "Shake It Up"). "Let's Go," which will be sampled at sporting events until there are no more sporting events, hit No. 14.

- 7 albums in the Top 20 of the Billboard 200 albums charts, including three in the Top 5 - 1979's "Candy-O," 1980's "Panorama" and 1984's "Heartbeat City" and the most recent "Move Like This." (Really? The Cars? In 2011? Wow. And awesome).

- 3 singles in the Top 100 from the pretty bad 1986 album "Door To Door," which speaks to their staying power even as they sloped and careened to their eventual breakup.

He drove you home.
Never happens without The Cars.
None of this accounts for the band's contribution to the video era, including the then-groundbreaking "You Might Think"; the late-Benjamin Orr's creepy "Drive," featuring Ric Ocasek's hot model wife; the even creepier "Hello Again," featuring Andy Freaking Warhol and some voluptuous babe who might have been a dude; "Shake It Up"; and "Magic," where Ocasek walks on water on top of clear blocks that you could always see but always pretended how cool it was.

Never happens without The Cars.
Maybe they didn't reinvent the wheel. Maybe they didn't get smacked out on drugs and make effed up videos and boast a bass player named after an insect.

Maybe they didn't rap about bad liquor and make videos with Seth Rogen.

Maybe they didn't welcome you to the jungle and make an overrated, overbloated double album that they sold in separate units to make an extra few bucks.

But if you grew up in the 1980s, you know how rad The Cars were, and you know they belong in the Hall.

What about The Go-Go's?

Let's look at the stats:

- 3 Top 20 albums in a two year span, including two (1982's "Talk Show" and "Beauty And The Beat") in the same year.

- 1 album, "God Bless The Go-Go's," that hit No. 57 in 2011 (Really? The Go-Go's? In 2011? Wow. And awesome).

- 5 singles in the Top 50 of the the Billboard Hot 100, including four of the best singles of The 1980s: "We Got The Beat," "Our Lips Are Sealed," "Vacation," "Head Over Heels."

- X number of chart-topping singles and albums if they hadn't been making music in a still-male-dominated industry - and had the benefit of cranking tunes after the falling of the walls they helped to bring down.

Head over heels for Boba.
None of this accounts for the image they cemented in the minds of music fans at the time: Girls can rock, they can write their own tunes and play their own instruments and they don't have to slut it up to do it. They took the torch from the Runaways, of course, but they put this on MTV.

My favorite period is the "Talk Show" phase, where Belinda Carlisle, Jane Wiedlin, Charlotte Caffey, Gina Schock and Kathy Valentine looked like smokin' hot 1980s moms rocking out and didn't really care that they did. It was as bad ass and punk rock as anything they ever did.

Yo, Rock Hall: When you make it up to Heart for abandoning the Women Who Rock theme it seemed like you were building, make sure to include The Go-Go's.

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