Retro Thursday — Billy Idol – Man with the Whiplash Smile

If you’re under 30, you probably don’t know who Billy Idol is. He was huge star in the 80’s with big hits such as Rebel Yell, Mony Mony (played at Blue Jay games and almost every MLB stadium in the US), and Eyes without a Face. So, I had to let you know who he was.


Billy Idol
arrived near the end of the Punk Rock Era, but while Punk Rock (with the likes of Johnny Rotten and the Sex Pistols) was disrythmic and violent, Idol’s music more of the typical heavy metal guitar variety that was so popular from 1974 to 1984. He looks like a Punk rocker with a distinct shtick, but he was more civil and his musicians are clearly more talented.

You’ll see a lot of Elvis type gestures in his act.

His music was aggressive and his lead guitarist Steve Stevens was very talented, known for aggressive, dramatic riffs. The British invasion dancing’s a little weird but just listen to the music. It does get your blood pumping.

These videos were well played on MTV in the 80’s.

His biggest hit was Rebel Yell. I’ll let your imagination figure out what that is.

And, this song was my favorite: Daytime Drama. I really like the guitar riffs on this one and nice keyboards. Very slick and subtle for a guy known for loud and aggressive.

And third is Flesh for Fantasy which has some great guitar riffs and tight drum rolls that almost sound like they’re synthesized. Ha ha, I like how the girl with the nice leg is packing a knife in holster.

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