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I am lucky to be old enough to remember these bands and their big hair, from Bon Jovi at the time of Jon Bon Jovi’s dodgy perm to Scorpion and their lead singer Klaus Meine’s less luscious locks.
Bon Jovi’s Livin’ on a Prayer exploded onto the music scene in 1986 and has become their signature song. If you fancy being a rockstar for one day you can play Livin’ on a Prayer on Guitar Hero World Tour and Rock Band 2.
Rock bands strutted their stuff like peacocks with their massive hair and massive attitudes, particularly Van Halen when David Lee Roth was still their lead singer.
Jump! is one of those songs that have become timeless, and features a great guitar solo from Eddie Van Halen. The video was particularly memorable as it showed Lee Roth’s various splits and high kicks antics in rather garish, colourful leggings. Believe it or not, that outfit was considered not only fashionable at the time but also rather sexy (here’s a link to the video).
Rock bands strutted their stuff like peacocks with their massive hair and massive attitudes
Scorpion’s Rock You Like a Hurricane is another classic, with lead singer Klaus Meine sporting a receding hairline and leather trousers combo. This is proper head-banging stuff: I challenge you not to nod vigorously during the chorus.
Mötley Crüe’s lion-like hair and screaming female fans have been constant features over the years.
Possibly one of Mötley’s best songs for me was Dr Feelgood, but they are probably best known for Girls Girls Girls, hardly a feminist empowerment song as it’s an ode to strippers.
The band is famous for the backstage shenanigans with their groupies and drummer Tommy Lee’s relationships with Heather Locklear and Pamela Anderson.
Def Leppard’s Pour Some Sugar on Me is awash with sexual innuendo but compared to modern rap the lyrics seem rather meek and innocent. I will always remember Def Leppard for they way they spelled Deaf Leopard wrong and their drummer who became a superstar in the band after he lost an arm in a car accident.
Actually the story of drummer Rick Allen could make an interesting film, as he went back on tour playing with a customised drum kit. He could play with one arm a year after his accident.
If you ever wanted to re-create the look of 80s big hair bands for a fancy dress party, my tips are:
1 – Wear skin-tight trousers, possibly with clashing colours and tears
2 – Back-comb your hair (or back-comb a long-haired wig) and scrunch it with hair mousse
3 – Wear eyeliner
4 – Doing the splits or other acrobatic stunts like David Lee Roth: optional