Sometimes you just have to write about guilty pleasures…

Back in June of 2013, I wrote a blog post here on Pop Rock Nation about songs that are guilty pleasures. As I sit here on this April day, contemplating the week and the fact that here it is April again and people are going batshit crazy, I decided I needed to post something lighthearted. And so I’ve decided that today’s post will be about guilty pleasures and the artists who create them. And hell, you can’t get any more lighthearted than Air Supply…

Okay, so many this isn’t a lighthearted song… It is, though, kind of a guilty pleasure for me.

I was looking at this morning for my daily dose of karaoke and “All Out Of Love” was one of the “featured” songs. I don’t like all of Air Supply’s music, but I will admit that a few of their songs were gems. I loved “Lost In Love” when it first came out. Of course, I was six or seven years old at the time… Anyway, having grown up in the 70s and 80s, I became well-versed in the magic of Air Supply. Some of their songs really were okay… sort of. They definitely count as “guilty pleasure” songs for me, though. I think it’s funny that Air Supply songs are featured on SingSnap, since they are basically male duets. I imagine most men worth their salt wouldn’t want to sing these “sensitive” numbers from the 80s!

I have to admit it… I do enjoy a lot of Barry Manilow’s music. Here’s a nice medley.

I was reminded of Barry Manilow last week as I was exploring Styx and Tommy Shaw made a comment about how he didn’t want Styx to start sounding like Barry Manilow. Granted, too much of his music may soon traipse into super annoying territory, but there’s a reason why the man was so popular in the 70s and 80s. He can sing and play piano and writes his own songs… though curiously enough, he didn’t write “I Write The Songs”. That song was written by Bruce Johnston in 1975, but Barry made it very popular indeed. Listening to the medley I posted here, I can’t help but notice that Barry has a flair for the melodramatic.

Randy Newman is a definitely guilty pleasure…

Randy Newman is not the greatest singer in the world and a lot of his songs have a very recognizable sound that immediately scream early 80s commercial to me. I like him, though, because he’s very witty and I get a kick out of his voice. He makes me laugh. Randy’s song “Short People” was such a hit that the Harlem Globetrotters sang it with Goldie Hawn. Talk about a guilty pleasure!

Snicker… if this isn’t a guilty pleasure, I don’t know what is…

Just about everything by Culture Club qualifies as a guilty pleasure as far as I’m concerned.

I remember how much this song used to irritate me when it was popular. Boy George is a very talented singer, but in the 80s Culture Club’s music was so ridiculously catchy that it would get stuck in my head and torment me for hours. I haven’t heard “Karma Chameleon” in years, though, so I figure it’s safe to include it in this post about guilty pleasures. It’s nice and peppy anyway, right?

Not really a hit, but definitely a guilty pleasure…

Jermaine Jackson had a couple of hits in the 80s and for some inexplicable reason, he recorded a ridiculous song called “Escape From The Planet of the Ant Men”. I kind of wonder if he was trying to emulate his brother Michael’s song, “Thriller”. It fails, but in a delightfully guilty pleasure way. I have to admit that when I’m in a certain mood, I really enjoy this song.

Oh my God…

Wham! was another one of those bands long on talent and guilty pleasure chops. This song is so 1984 it’s not even funny. I remember how the video spawned the fad that had everyone wearing painter’s caps and t-shirts with big letters on them. Or was that Frankie Goes To Hollywood that did that? Don’t know… but this song is so infectious I need an antibiotic and a painkiller… preferably in the form of an alcoholic beverage. “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go…” That’s a hell of a title for a guilty pleasure song.

Anything involving Menudo qualifies as guilty pleasure territory…

Here’s a classic clip from the 80s era sitcom Silver Spoons. Although this episode was about Menudo, everyone my age had the hots for Ricky Schroeder. I know he goes by Rick now, but he’ll always be “The Ricker” to me. Is it me, or are these guys way off key? Egad!

And finally, there’s “We Are The World” by USA for Africa

This song is pure melodrama, but I can’t help but love it for the video alone. Look at all those celebrities! LaToya Jackson is in the choir, for Chrissakes! Yes, I loved it in 1985 and I love it now. It is a guilty pleasure, though. I get a huge kick out of Stevie Wonder’s jaunty solo interspersed with Bruce Springsteen’s constipated screaming at the end. It’s pure 80s magic! And sorry, the remake just doesn’t cut it.

Justin Bieber is no Lionel Richie.

This version sounds suspiciously auto-tuned. Okay, I admit it… it’s making me verklempt. I still like the original better, though.

Have a great weekend everyone!

We Are The World (MP3 Music)

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