Trev’s Top 10 at Ten – The Best 80’s Bands Live in Concert
Last night I started a new Monday night feature called “Trev’s Top Ten at Ten” Since I hosted John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band at the Surflight Theatre Saturday night in Beach Haven, the topic was the Top Ten Best 80’s band that you’ve ever seen live. The 80’s were the time of the epic concerts in New Jersey with Amnesty International at the Meadowlands, Live Aid in Philadelphia, Farm Aid, You pick a cause, Rock n Roll raised money for it.
I left Bruce Springsteen off the list because I don’t consider him an 80’s artist. Granted Bruce came of age nationally in the 80’s but for me, his best shows were when “Darkness on the edge of Town” was the new album and the sings were all before that in the seventies. Michael Jackson, however, I did include because regardless of the singles he had as a member of the Jackson 5, he really became “Michael Jackson” on the Motown 25 year Anniversary special when we saw “Billie Jean” performed live for the first time.
So here’s the list that myself and the callers came up with last night. Feel free to add more and comment on the choices if you please..
U2- I saw them at the Amnesty show at the Meadowlands as the act before the Police reunion. Bad move by the Police because as good as they were, there was no way they could follow U2. I would say next to Bruce, they are the best live band and continue to be. (You can see some of their performance that night in the video above)
Madonna- She was so much hotter in the 80’s. The clothes, the songs, the dancing, No one could ‘Strike a Pose” like she could.
Prince- Coming off his tortured soul character in “Purple Rain” with his Lovesexy” tour. Prince shows were epic. And he gave us Shiela E!
Guns and Roses- No matter what was going on internally with the band, they always brought out their best on stage! Who can forget the Appetite for Destruction” Tour? Axl jumping into the crowd for “Paradise City” Axl showing up late…Goodtimes.
Bon Jovi - Who can forget Jon flying around the stage? Shows that would go well over two hours, I remember a free concert they did at a place called “Bratz” in Cherry Hill waaaay back in the day.
Genesis- Although they started in the 70’s, they changed almost completely when Phil Collins took over and soared in the 80’s. I saw then at the sold out Veterans Stadium in 1987. Collins was not only friendly but funny in between the songs. Mike Rutherford at the time also had hits with Mike and the Mechanics.
Journey-Incredible band, incredible voice, incredible shows! I remember them with the Rolling Stones at JFK in 1981.
Iron Maiden-Great show at the Spectrum in 1986!
John Mellencamp- The American Fool album started it all for Mellencamp who had dropped the “Cougar” and became his own man and continues to be musically to this day.
Van Halen - Who can ever forget the 1984 tour? When Van Halen was Van Halen! David Lee Roth dancing around the stage to “Jump” with Eddie on guitar, Back stage at those shows would have made for a great rock n roll movie but they would have to kill whoever told the story ;)