Friday, November 03, 2006

Planet 1988- another world !

Glenn Madeiros- all the rage in Britain in 1988 !

Yesterday I found myself browsing the internet in response to a few random thoughts. One thought that seemed to come out of nowhere was "What happened to Glenn Madeiros?".

As far as I know Glenn Madeiros had only one significant hit (at least in the UK). I remember it clearly- it was the ultimate cheesy ballard- "Nothing's Gonna Change my Love For You". Coming from a US release in 1987, this made it to the UK charts in 1988. The video shows Glenn walking along a windy beach holding the hand of his "love"- a "common or garden" attractive blonde girl. There is not too much imagination in the video by the standards of today but it conveys a universal message that was popular enough to make Glenn Madeiros No 1 in the UK charts for 4 weeks around July 1988.

Seeing Glenn walking down a beach (courtesy of hosting on Youtube before my domestic "IT supervisor" banned me on the grounds of virus threats.... and probably good taste !) brought it home just how much has changed since the days when a love song about a girl with big hair made it to No 1 in our charts.

Not only does it look different but the world is so completely different- and what is more shocking is this is not 100 years ago but a mere 18 years ago.

18 years ago was a time when Margaret Thatcher was still going strong as British Prime Minister, and no Bush or Clinton had yet made it to the White House. Saddam Hussein while not exactly a good guy was still a "preferable" Middle East leader as the Iran-Iraq war still had a month to go when Glen was No 1.

For everyday people there was no internet and mobile phones existed with huge batteries for the City elite but no more.

There was no Euro. The Soviets were reforming but still occupied Afghanistan while Osama bin Laden was a fighter in the "freedom struggle".

The UK terrorist problem was Irish Catholic rather than Islamic but you could drive in the centre of London for free.

The Berlin Wall would stand for another year and dictators such as Ceausescu still struck fear in Eastern Europe. South Africa was still governed as an Aparteid state.

All this was only 18 years ago. As well as all the changes, it is worth noting that some things haven't changed. We still have the same Queen, Kylie was still in the charts and people complained about the NHS !

So in the time it takes a baby to grow up to have the right to vote, whole empires have died, new countries emerged, allies become enemies and enemies become allies. Technologies we didn't really dream of are now the centre of our lives. Glenn Maderios was a one hit wonder but Kylie Minogue doing the Locomotion in 1988 is back on tour this year.

If so much has changed in the last 18 years, how much more will change in the next 18 ? In 2024 will Chinese take vacations in their holiday homes in Africa that they bought while working out there ? Will the US be a dual Spanish-English nation in the way Canada is now French-English ? Will retired PM Cameron congratulate former US president Barack Obama as a further reduction in CO2 emissions is agreed at an international environment conference in Tehran ? Will former insurgents in Iraq go on book signing tours as they muse on the madness of their youth and why they turned to peace ? Will our homes be solar powered ? Maybe the future will be darker, not brighter ? However whatever the future I suspect the world in 18 years time will look as strange as 1988 looks now.


Simon Holyhoses said...

Cripes! That was like a shot in the arm. I didn't think I'd forgotten the name of a single cheesy 80s chart artist!

Luis said...

Happy to revive some memories from the 80s- hope this was not too traumatic :-)