Perhaps realizing that “’80s music” has become a genre of its own, and that there’s no better way to grab dollars from the thirtysomething demographic than to remind them of the hits of their youth, Red Entertainment Agency has announced that this summer would mark the first Regeneration Tour, in which six artists from the synthpop age will tour the countryside. Those artists–The Human League, Belinda Carlisle, ABC, Dead Or Alive, A Flock of Seagulls, and Naked Eyes–will likely get to play short sets that are made up of mostly hits a la the UK’s Here and Now Tour. But what have they been up to in the years following their glory days? The answers are mostly pretty depressing, with the most sigh-inducing ones involving either reality television or showing skin.
The Human League
The linked MySpace page isn’t an official site because Philip Oakey doesn’t believe the band is “important” enough to have an Internet presence, which kind of makes me love them even more than I did before and also makes them stick out in this particular group for what will soon become obvious reasons, i.e. they seem to have some sort of dignity left in their tank. Which is why I predict them leaving the tour for “personal reasons” before its midpoint.
They were a duo, but keyboardist Rob Fisher died in 1999 following complications from stomach surgery.
A Flock of Seagulls
Did Bands Reunited. Lead singer Mike Score’s hair has apparently grown out to make up for it not being able to grow up anymore.
Also did Bands Reunited, although only two members got back together on the show. So they pulled in a dude from Kajagoogoo to perform with them. Teamwork!
“Oh, she hasn’t been on reality TV,” I thought when I checked out her IMDB page. “That’s nice, she still has some dignity.” And then I remembered the fateful events of August 2001. (NSFW photo shoot here.) And don’t even get me started on her Francopop-grunge album.
Dead Or Alive
Lead singer Pete Burns has been more famous for being a plastic surgery addict and going on the UK version of Big Brother than for anything music-related he might have done in the years since “You Spin Me Round” was a roller-rink hit. And I still think he’s scum for claiming that he was wearing a coat made from gorilla skin back in the day. (It was actually made from the skin of Colobus monkeys.) Which is why the needle on my schadenfreude-meter is being moved a bit over the fact that he’s apparently been financially forced to do this tour, since when his band’s big hit was re-released in the UK to capitalize on his reality-TV “fame” a few years back he complained about it feeling like “wearing a school uniform at the age of 46.”
’80s Pop Veterans Team For Regeneration Tour [Billboard]