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July 16, 2006

Did This Video Kill Billy Squier?

Just curious. I don't remember my reaction to it. I don't even think I really had MTV at the time.

But Billy Squier was about the only hard-rock hero I can remember at the time who wasn't just a retread. Or one of those metal bands I wasn't really into. Okay, yeah, I liked Def Leppard. But Billy Squier was a little different. He was metal-tinged, but it wasn't metal. It was pop-rock, with a lot of rock to go along with the pop.

Loverboy was big back then too, and I guess I really can't deny that The Kid is Hot Tonight or Everyone's Workin' For the Weekend were/are good songs, but I don't know. In one of rock n' rolls numerous Dark Ages (we're living through a very long lone), Billy Squier was the equivalent of an Irish monk keeping the old learning alive. Led Zeppelin had just broken up, and the big acts were people like Hall & Oates (who, you know, I really dug, and still do, but they weren't rock) and Blondie (also not rock).

So, Billy Squier was keeping the flame of rock alive for a while.

And then this video came out.

Again, I forget my reaction to it. I don't think I thought it was gay or effeminate at the time; pretty much everyone was dressing like idiots back then. A couple of years later Nick Rhodes would show everyone how to Rrrrrock in pink lipstick and fingerless lace gloves, and by the end of the decade candy-metal musicians would be dressing up like transexual tarts. (But badass transexual tarts, man).

So, although it's not an excuse, everyone was sort of doing it. I don't remember Billy Squier looking much different than the dope from Loverboy, or the idiot from Adam Ant. (Who I guess was, um, Adam Ant.)

But that dancing... what the hell is that?

And... I don't know. Squier was kind of a rock guy, and while a more pop or New Wave oriented act could get away with this, I don't know if Squier could. He was sort of just rock enough to appease the rock-heads while being pretty pop and dance-oriented; maybe this killed his career. You can't be a Hard Rock Hero and flounce around in conniptions dressed in a pretty pink workout outfit that looks like it was stitched together by Molly Ringwald in a slutty mood.

I don't know. Does anyone remember turning off to Squier after this?

The song's pretty good. Not one of his best, but okay.

But the video. Good Lord, what was he thinking?

digg this
posted by Ace at 10:31 PM

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