Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Retro Christmas Video of the Day - Do They Know It's Christmas

In 1984, a very selfless thing happened in London that profoundly changed how music is used for good. Bob Geldof recruited a bunch of his industry friends and along with Midge Ure wrote a song to be used to raise money for starving people of Africa. The song was recorded under the name Band-Aid and was made up of a collection of the biggest pop talent of that time.


Along with Bob and Midge, some other artists who lent their talents included, Paul Young, Duran Duran, U2, Phil Collins, Paul Weller, Heaven 17, Banarama, Culture Club, Kool and the Gang, Sting, Spandou Ballet, George Michael, Jodie Watley, some dudes from Big Country and a freak called Marilyn ripping off Boy George's shtick. Even David Bowie left a personal message on the extended remix of the song.



The video, as expected, got massive air play and did raise a lot of money for the cause that led to a multi-country Live-Aid concert and American artists to do their own song under the name U.S.A. for Africa and Canadia artists under the name Northern Lights. It also propelled Bob Geldof as the poster child for famine relief and also led to a Nobel prize and a Knighthood from the Queen (the real one - not the band).

Honestly, Bob deserves nothing but praise for his efforts but as expected, he also became a target. He couldn't have a meal in a restaurant without some reporter asking him how it felt to eat with so many people starving in the world. What the hell is wrong with people? Bob did more for charity in one day than most people do in a lifetime. Think about that as you go for seconds this Christmas.






Retro Christmas Video Bonus !! (sorry for the Yoko)








Monday, December 21, 2009

Retro Video of the Day - Max Headroom's Christmas Classic

Need a break from all the sappy Christmas music that is no doubt following you around everywhere you go these days as you prepare for the magic of Christmas while draining your savings account? Search no further - Max Headroom is back to bring you some retro joy.


Remember him? If your a retro fan then you are aware of the odd phenomenon from the mid 80s that spawned a bit of a craze. With technology becoming a bigger part of our lives and video technology pushing new boundaries, the timing was perfect for the emergence of a fictional artificial intelligence doing his thing on a video screen.

Max Headroom got his start as British TV series but became better known thanks to a video by Art of Noise that featured him performing for "Paranoimia". That led to a gig as a spokesman (spokesgraphic ? spokesimage ? spokesthingy ?) or talking head for New Coke that helped propel Max into the public conscienceness.

Due to his popularity, Chrysalis released a Christmas song featuring Max singing "Merry Christmas Santa Claus" with his trademark stutter and quirky delivery.

















Monday, December 14, 2009

Retro Ad of the Day - The Spirit of Christmas

One thing that has changed since the retro days of old are the television ads around Christmas time. Sure even back then, advertisers were trying their hardest to get you to spend your hard earned dollars on bigger and better gifts for little Timmy or that special someone but they weren't smacking you upside the head with the message or trying to make you feel like less of a human for not spending more for a bigger, better gift than you bought last year.


There was always a beautiful Christmas scene with snow and a happy family sharing a magical Christmas moment with tender looks and gentle hugs. Then while sipping on hot cocoa, mom would present a beautifully wrapped gift to little Cindy who opened it and beamed like the little cherub she was to the delight of the whole family.



Of course nowawdays they show little Cindy freaking out because she didn't get a 3g iPhone or a new car with a big bow waiting for her in the driveway. Meanwhile dad is sleeping on the couch because he thought a new blender would be the perfect gift to go with the Slap Chop he bought mom for her birthday. Was it really necessary to hurl it at him like that? How's he supposed to return it now?

With that in mind, let's take a look at a couple of Christmas ads that you'll remember and will warm you up better than any Snuggie ever could.





There are of course some exceptions.........






Friday, December 11, 2009

Retro Video of the Day - Don't Forget Me When I'm Gone

In keeping with the whole Tiger's Wood theme (I mean Tiger Woods), let's go back and visit a Canadian tiger from back in the 80s.

Glass Tiger's breakout hit from 1986, "Don't Forget Me When I'm Gone" featured Bryan Adams doing some backup work many classic hallmarks of cheesy 80's videos. Big hair - check, pastels and shoulder pads - check, gimmicky sets - check, children pretending to play instruments - check, loose story line featuring other children - check?!?! Not sure what the connection with the kids would be but.... there you go.

The song went number one in Canada (naturally) and number 2 in the U.S. (surprisingly) and also charted pretty good in many other countries as well. The band originally called themselves Tokyo which confused some so they changed their name to Glass Tiger and succeeded in confusing everyone else.

This song is pretty much Elin Woods anthem at the moment.





For an unrelated Tiger experience, click the picture below to play the Tiger Woods Outrun flash game. Hope all those girls were worth it Tiger - somehow, I doubt it.


Thursday, December 3, 2009

New American Gothic - Tiger Style

Truly one of the most iconic American artistic images is American Gothic painted by Grant Wood from 1930. The pitch fork represented hard labour while the flowers over the right shoulder of the woman symbolised domesticity.

That image will soon be replaced by the image below. The iron symbolises one man's path to greatness, fame and fortune and the implement that also brought him the beating of his life. The beaten Tiger symbolizes the wrath of a woman scorned.
Q: What's the difference between a car and a golf ball?
A: Tiger Woods can drive a golf ball 400 yards.
(Sorry - couldn't resist!)




Wednesday, December 2, 2009

When Retro and Politics Collide - Obama's Economy

A while back in a previous post, we showed what happens when retro and politics collide - click here to see that post. Here's another installment featuring a likely response from the anointed one if he doesn't get the economy rolling again in the next little while.


Getting the economy back on track will be the only way to avoid magazine covers like the one below. We all pretty much have hit our own personal rock bottoms so let's hope the man knows what he's doing.


Hey - don't get me wrong, I've got nothing against him and certainly hope for the best for all of us but it's almost been a year now and I hope the wave of goodwill he rode in on doesn't get eroded with some of the decisions he's made so far and lack of action in some cases on other issues. I've got my fingers crossed for all of us.


On a lighter note - here's a Carlton Banks and Steve Erkel danceoff.