91X, 1985 & ME

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85-countdown

The chances of this being printed on a dot matrix printer with the perforated things on the side are 100%. Since 1985 was not my most social year, it’s possible I stayed home and listened to the entire countdown just so I could have this. My favorite song on here is probably BAD’s “Bottom Line”. The worst just may be “Broken Wings”.

First world problems.

1985 was the unhappiest year of my childhood but that really isn’t saying much. I never had it rough, by any means. I finished eighth grade living in a historic house in one of the nicest neighborhoods in San Diego, Mission Hills. Most of my friends had more gifts and gadgets than I did but I never complained. I had it really good. I never felt spoiled, though. My parents would match us for whatever money my sister and I saved.  So while many kids in my ‘hood got anything they wanted, I put aside part of my allowance every week to get my first bike and my Atari 2600 and, years later, they helped pay for half of my first car.roosevelt-movie-tix

Still, I was pretty surprised to find out that summer that we couldn’t afford to live in the poshest part of the city any more.  We were hardly moving to the wrong side of the tracks, though. University City is only a few minutes from La Jolla, the wealthiest part of town. It was a fairly new community then (I was in the high school’s ninth graduating class) but, even today, I get people who’ve lived here their whole lives and haven’t heard of it until I mention UTC, the nearby mall.  It was a nice section of suburbia but, to save money, we got a fixer-upper and lived in rubble for nine months.  Did I mention that it had a pool? Poor me.

Exactly 365 days after my real first show, I was back at  the OAT seeing Sting's first-ever US concert.

Exactly 365 days after my real first show, I was back at the OAT seeing Sting’s first-ever US concert.

The hard part was friends. I had none. My old friends weren’t old enough to drive yet and I entered Standley Junior High in ninth grade.  Back then, middle schools were seventh, eighth and ninth grade, so everyone had already made their friends. No one wanted to let the new kid into their circle so I wanted my parents to drive me to my old neighborhood every weekend.  I don’t have a lot of school memories from that year, not that there was anything terrible aside from the time I heard some kids laughing at me at lunch and discovered one of them had spit on my back.

I don't remember too much about this show other than that we had really good seats, they played "Squeeze It The Moocher" and some new song about dead guys partying.

I don’t remember too much about this show other than that we had really good seats but snuck down into better ones and that they played “Squeeze It The Moocher” and some new song about dead guys partying.

In between stealing glances of girls blossoming into womanhood, I found one subject I was good at: typing. The last time I was tested, 20 years ago, I did 71wpm. I should’ve been a piano player, I guess. If we had extra time in class, we could do games that involved typing and hitting the space bar a certain number of times so that you ended up with a picture of some object like a train or a dog.  Of course, I started doing my own typewriter art…
91x-typingtype-beat type-irs type-miami type-oingo type-oingo-lyrics type-u2 type-who

The best stuff I recall from that first year was all music related, of course. I made a “Very New Wave” compilation from Ted Clark’s Psych Furs, REM, Simple Minds and New Order albums.  A skinhead named Matt Page made me a copy of the Sex Pistols’ Greatest Rock & Roll Swindle and introduced me to punk.  Scott Brown taped me the Colourfield’s Virgins & Philistines and Echo & The Bunnymen’s Ocean Rain.  Now we were getting somewhere. I still listened to 91X constantly but was finally learning that there was music even better than what the radio played….

oingo-drawing

Boingo was my favorite band in my early high school years. I remember a classmate in disbelief that I owned all of their albums but only knew the songs that got played on the radio. I had to get wise and QUICK. A few years later I was, like, SO over them.

UPDATE

In May of 1985, 91X assembled a random group of musicians, politicians, radio & tv personalities and even Ultravox's Midge Ure to rewrite and record Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?" as "Will They Know It's Summertime".  The song was released on a charity album along with songs by locals the Monroes, Number One & The Best Boys, Mojo Nixon, The Seventh, Bobby Volare, Marty Eldridge and more. The station did a radiothon for African famine relief anthem and raised $111,672 according to an LA Times article (link below).

In May of 1985, 91X assembled a random group of musicians, politicians, radio & tv personalities and even Ultravox’s Midge Ure to rewrite and record Band Aid’s “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” as “Will They Know It’s Summertime”. The song was released on a charity album along with songs by locals the Monroes, Number One & The Best Boys, Mojo Nixon, The Seventh, Bobby Volare, Marty Eldridge and more. The station did a radiothon for African famine relief anthem and raised $111,672 according to an LA Times article (link below).

 

‘Sand Aid’ Helps Fight The Famine, LA Times May 1, 1985

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4 thoughts on “91X, 1985 & ME

  1. Pingback: XXX: Thirty Years of 91X Year End Countdowns becomes The Top 888 Modern Rock Acts of All-Time | "Yer doin' great." (a muzak clickclack)

  2. Pingback: 91X, 1984 & ME | "Yer doin' great." (a muzak clickclack)

  3. I have so much love for 1985. I was so into music at that point I couldn’t get enough of those songs. Your Oingo Boingo picture reminded me that my first full length album on vinyl that I bought was Nothing To Fear in 1982, although I think I got it in 1983ish. I believe I heard them in movie The Last American Virgin, so I went out and bought it with my allowance money from my household chores.

  4. http://www.thehistoryofwwe.com/85.htm

    WWF @ San Diego, CA – Sports Arena – February 25, 1985
    George Wells defeated Jesse Ventura via disqualification
    Ivan Putski defeated Jack Armstrong
    Don Muraco defeated SD Jones
    Paul Orndorff defeated Salvatore Bellomo
    Jimmy Snuka defeated Bob Orton Jr.
    Jim Neidhart defeated Swede Hanson
    The Junkyard Dog defeated Alexi Smirnoff
    WWF World Champion Hulk Hogan (w/ Hillbilly Jim) defeated Brutus Beefcake (w/ Johnny V); during the bout, Jim broke his leg when he slipped on a wet patch on the floor while chasing Johnny V around ringside; the injury forced Jim out of action for 7 months

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