Live Talking Heads video from 1980 & why the 70s were the best decade for music


This was posted earlier today at Open Culture. It doesn't really need much of an introduction, it's the Talking Heads playing at their pinnacle. By 1980 they were well beyond the small club days of CBGBa but not yet the huge international sensation they'd become with the rise of MTV and their concert film "Stop Making Sense."

But, while one of the best bands in the world doesn't need much introduction, I will take a moment to talk about a related subject: The older I get, the more convinced I am that the 1970s were the best decade in music history (at least recorded music history).

The decade is famous for disco, whatever you may think of it. It is also famous for the rise of punk, post punk, new wave and alt. rock - the Sex Pistols, Buzzcocks, Clash, Ramones, Talking Heads, Devo, Bauhaus, Joy Division (later New Order), Iggy (Pop) and the Stooges, the Cramps, Blondie and dozens of others.

That though is just the very tip of the iceberg:
Country was still doing it's thing and was, at least, far better than it is now (Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Loretta Lynn, Charlie Pride etc). There were a lot of surviving 60s groups still going strong such as the Rolling Stones, Santana, the Who, Beatles (individually, not collectively), Neil Young, Grateful Dead, Velvet Underground (and Lou Reed). The "mainstream" rock of the 70s also included Tom Waits, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty, Eagles, and Abba. Motown was still going strong with the Jackson 5, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and others.

In addition to the well known rise of punk though the 70s also saw the rise of the first wave of hard rock/heavy metal including Led Zepplin, Black Sabbath, Alice Cooper, AC/DC. The 70s gave birth to rap and hip hop with DJ Cool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, Gil Scott-Heron, the Sugar Hill Gang and others. The decade also saw the rise and largely the fall of Prog Rock (Pink Floyd, Yes, Genesis w/ Peter Gabriel), Funk (George Clinton & Pariament Funkadelic, Sly and the Familiy Stone, Stevie Wonder) and the "Glam" or theatrical rock that came out of England in the early-mid 70s (T.Rex, David Bowie, Elton John, Queen).

Whatever you are into, it probably has strong roots in the 1970s.

Anyway, back to the point, here are the Talking Heads, live in Dortmund, Germany in 1980.

Talking Heads live Dortmund 1980 from eric pease on Vimeo.
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