The Essential Songs: 1979

Written by | November 30, 2012 0:13 am | No Comments


It has long been my contention that 1979 was one of popular music’s best years ever.  Punk rock energy seeped into the mainstream with under the “new wave” umbrella, while bands like Blondie, the B-52s, and the Talking Heads were cross pollinating dance beats/rhythms into a traditional rock context.  Pink Floyd built the wall, Cheap Trick brought Budokan to the States, and AC/DC paved the highway to hell.  1979 – the year is gone but it’s not forgotten.

Ain’t No Stopping Us Now, McFadden & Whitehead
After the Love Has Gone, Earth, Wind, & Fire
Boogie Wonderland, Earth, Wind, & Fire
Boys Don’t Cry, The Cure
Bright Side of the Road, Van Morrison
Bustin’ Loose (Part 1), Chuck Brown and the Soul Searchers
Cars, Gary Numan
Comfortably Numb, Pink Floyd
Cool for Cats, Squeeze
Cruel to Be Kind, Nick Lowe
Cruisin’, Smokey Robinson
Dance This Mess Around, B-52s
The Devil Went Down to Georgia, The Charlie Daniels Band
Discovering Japan, Graham Parker & The Rumour
Don’t Stop ‘til You Get Enough, Michael Jackson
Dream Police, Cheap Trick
Dreaming, Blondie
Even the Losers, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
Everytime I Think of You, The Babys
Fool in the Rain, Led Zeppelin
Good Times, Chic
Harmony in My Head, Buzzcocks
Heart of Glass, Blondie
Heartbreaker, Pat Benatar
Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black), Neil Young
Highway to Hell, AC/DC
Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick, Ian Dury and the Blockheads
Hot Stuff, Donna Summer
I Don’t Like Mondays, The Boomtown Rats
I Want You to Want Me, Cheap Trick
I Wanna Be Your Lover, Prince
I Will Survive, Gloria Gaynor
I’m Bad, I’m Nationwide, ZZ Top
Is She Really Going Out With Him?, Joe Jackson
Leaving Louisiana in the Broad Daylight, The Oak Ridge Boys
Let’s Go, The Cars
Life Begins at the Hop, XTC
Life During Wartime, Talking Heads
Like a Hurricane (“Live Rust” version), Neil Young
London Calling, The Clash
Message in a Bottle, The Police
A Message to You, Rudy, The Specials
My Sharona, The Knack
Oliver’s Army, Elvis Costello
Pop Muzik, M
Powderfinger, Neil Young
Rainbow Connection, Kermit the Frog
Rapper’s Delight, The Sugarhill Gang
Reunited, Peaches and Herb
Rock Lobster, B-52s
Rock ‘n’ Roll Fantasy, Bad Company
Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground), The Jackson 5
Starry Eyes, The Records
Sultans of Swing, Dire Straits
Train, Train, Blackfoot
Up the Junction, Squeeze
Video Killed the Radio Star, The Buggles
We Are Family, Sister Sledge
What A Fool Believes, Doobie Brothers
 (What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding, Elvis Costello
You Can’t Change That, Raydio

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