I was channel surfing a couple of weeks ago and I decided that since I pay Comcast for something called “Digital Plus” or some shit like that, I really oughta do some exploring to see what we have. So I went up into no man’s land. The cable ghetto, if you will. Basically anything above channel 120 can qualify as the cable ghetto. So I’m surfin’ the ghetto and I get to the 270s and I see we have Fuse, which seems to be very much like MTV. Whatever. I keep going and I see MTV2 – now we’re getting somewhere. MTV2 actually plays videos, which is a novel idea these days for “music” television, ay? But when I hit 277, that’s when I hit paydirt, kiddos. VH-1 Classic totally, completely kicks ass. This channel brings me right back in time, back when MTV was a revoloution and I was just a kid, playing “Defender” on my Atari 2600 and starting to think about girls.
Anyway, the best part about this station is that they don’t just play the hits! They actually play videos that didn’t get much play even back then – and that’s where this station hits the sweet spot – they really nail it. It saddens me to think about how long I’ve had this channel so long and how much I’ve missed already. This channel is nothing but old school music videos and I am utterly riveted. I already know that my poor wife is very sick of me hitting 277 and bobbing my head back and forth, up and down, to something like The Fall’s “Let The Day Begin” or Joe Walsh’s “The Confessor.” Old school, baby.
Some recent video highlights:
J. Giels, “Love Stinks” – I was never much a fan of this band, but I’ve always loved this song. It has such sticky little rawk guitar parts and the lyrics are kind of hilarious. That said, this video is a hoot, most notably because Magic Dick is seen playing a harmonica throughout the video even though there isn’t a harmonica part to be found in the song. I love it.
Steve Perry, “Oh Sherry” – Oh god. Steph and I watched this putrid video in horror, but couldn’t bring ourselves to turn the channel. It was so horrible that it was brilliant. It starts in some castle with horns blowing and Steve Perry is dressed up as “the king” and he’s getting married or something. But then it turns into a sort-of mockumentary of video-making, and Perry rips off his king duds and says “I just can’t do this video” and he wanders off and starts singing about Sherry, alone in a corner, or sitting on stairs, or whatever. Naturally, Sherry is this total ’80s chick who has a t-shirt tucked into jeans, which come almost all the way up to her boobs. Classic indeed.
Animotion, “Obsession” – extra credit if you can remember this song. You know the words:
I will have you, yes I will have you
I will find a way, and I will have you
Like a butterfly, A wild butterfly
I will collect you and capture you
You are an obsession
You’re my obsession
Who do you want me to be
To make you sleep with me?
Both Steph and I thought it was The Human League at first, because back in 1983, all the Brits tried to sound like The Human League (sidenote: I loved The Human League back then). This was funny because the female singer in the band had this hair that made her look like a cross between a cockatoo and large pole. They, too, were dressed up some kind of medieval royalty-type garb and the rhythmic, syncronized dancing between the male and female lead singer, well, that might have to be a post for another day, because it was alarming and very, very funny.
Might be time for you all to check to see if you have VH-1 Classic. It’s pretty amazing.
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