New Year’s Day 1980 – It probably didn’t happen to you – or it may not have happened yet – but there have been reports, from perfectly reliable sources, of going to a party in one city and waking up the next morning in another. How it is completely possible to be jammed into a friend’s loft in The Village with a hundred other people, wrapping your tongue around party drinks and partygoers and finding yourself somewhere in London, in someone’s bed – with several other people you have no idea who they are – and no clue how you got there. All you know is, the faint glow of the stereo, peering up over your feet is like a laser beam to your eyeball, and the crackling sound from the speaker next to your throbbing head is greeting you with the cheery voice of a BBC Disc Jockey.
And somewhere in this fog of hangover, you vaguely remember yelling at someone that you were looking for a pack of Rothman’s cigarettes and couldn’t find any in New York.
And maybe that wasn’t your story – maybe you just stayed home all night and could hardly keep your eyes open by 10:30. Still; it became a new year all over the world and a new decade to boot.
And to celebrate that, here is the New Year’s Day program from BBC Radio 2 in 1980, featuring the late Terry Wogan as he ran the top 30 most played records on BBC Radio for 1979. About an hour in there’s a newscast, with reports on the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and the American hostages in Tehran. Even on the first day of a new year, there were reminders of the old one, and precursors of what the new one was going to be like.
And you may be wondering about the music – how almost none of this was what you were listening to in 1979. Well . . .there was still the mainstream – and Simple Minds and Blondie weren’t considered mainstream by a long shot – it was still the 70s, after all.
Times change – music changes – hangovers, not so much.