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Following my last post inspired by Stranger Things and featuring my favourite movies of 1984, here are my favourite albums of 1984.  The criteria, I only picked actual albums not compilations or best of albums.  And most importantly, I only picked albums that I own.

Bon JoviBon Jovi

Bon Jovi – Like most people, I didn’t go back to discover Bon Jovi’s debut album until two years later when Slippery When Wet was a huge hit.  Standout track: Runaway

Born In the U.S.A.  Born In the USA

Bruce Springsteen – You couldn’t turn on a radio in the mid 80’s without hearing a track from this album.  Seven of the twelve tracks were released as singles.  There isn’t a bad track on the album making it hard to pick out a standout track, the title track is one of the most recognisable records of all time, I would go for either: Glory Days or Dancing in the Dark.

Like a Virgin Like a Virgin

Madona – I haven’t listened to this album for over twenty years but had to include it as it was the first record I purchased on CD.  Standout track: Material Girl

Private DancerPrivate Dancer

Tina Turner – I recently picked this album up on vinyl from a charity shop, it still sounds great, Standout track: The title track, Private Dancer written by Mark Knopfler.

Purple RainPurple Rain

Prince – I didn’t like Prince or listen to this album until I saw the movie Purple Rain a couple of years later.  Standout Track: When Doves Cry.

RecklessReckless

Brian Adams – Another one I haven’t listened to for about twenty years, but earns it place because of the amount I played it back in the day.  Standout track: Run to You or Summer of 69.

Ride The LightningRide The Lightning

Metallica – I didn’t start listening to Metallica until their fourth album …And Justice for All in 1988,  by the time their massively popular self titled album came out in 1991 I had purchased the first three albums including the excellent Ride The Lightning.  Standout track: For Whom the Bell Tolls.

She’s So UnusualShe_s So Unusual

Cyndi Lauper – Fantastic debut album from Cyndi Lauper.  The first single Girls Just Want to Have Fun is probably the best know, but for me, the standout track is: Time After Time.

The Unforgettable FireThe Unforgettable Fire

U2 – Having made the debut in 1980 with Boy, this was U2’s fourth album and a slight change in style.  Standout track: Pride (In The Name Of Love).

Various PositionsVarious Positions

Leonard Cohen – Cohen’s seventh studio album, and a new direction with a modern synth sound and backing singer.  The most famous (and covered track) is Hallelujah, but for me the standout track is: Dance Me to the End of Love.

Bonus selection.  As I said I have not included any compilations or best of albums, but had to mention Dire Straits fantastic live album Alchemy and the standout track, having first appeared on the 1982 album Love over Gold, the epic: Telegraph RoadAlchemy

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Everybody knows that the dice are loaded

Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed

Everybody knows the war is over

Everybody knows the good guys lost

Everybody knows the fight was fixed

The poor stay poor, the rich get rich

That’s how it goes

Everybody knows

leonard-cohenWhen I was around 15 or 16 years old I rented the Christian Slater/Samantha Mathis movie Pump Up the Volume.  A couple of years later I recorded it when it was shown on TV (anyone under the age of 35 will have no idea of the reason or significance of this!), in the five or six years that followed it was watched on hard rotation with first, school and then university friends along with some similarly themed movies:  Fandango, the breakfast club, Dazed and Confused, Heathers, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, The Sure Thing.  As time went on the film that once meant a lot to me became less significant, until, I don’t think I have seen it for over fifteen years.  However, it did give me one lasting thing, a love of the music of Leonard Cohen.  The film heavily features the song Everybody Knows.  I went out with the intention of purchasing the soundtrack but found that for rights reasons (as I discovered many years later) a cover version that was used over the credits was used on the soundtrack instead of the original that was so important in the film.  Instead I purchased the CD of I’m Your Man, the Leonard Cohen album that features the song.  And thus begun a love of Leonard Cohen’s music.

A great artist who will be missed despite the amazing musical legacy he leaves us. 

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