Alt Country star Ryan Adams posted his top 5 hair metal songs on his MySpace blog. (You may need to be a MySpace member to get to his blog)
- Kix - "Don't Close Your Eyes"
- Slaughter - "Fly To The Angels"
- Dokken - "Dream Warriors"
- Vinne Vincent Invsion (With Mark Slaughter of Slaughter on Vocals) - "Love Kills"
- Ozzy Osbourne - "Over The Mountain"
Kix at #1?
And yes, I have 4 out of the 5 albums from his list. Only missing the Vinnie Vincent record, not that I have any plans to change that.
I'll have to think on my top 5 list for a bit.
OK, I've thought. Let the argument begin. First of all, Ozzy is not hair metal. Ozzy is heavy metal. It's an important distinction. For any 80s metal song ask yourself this question...did my girlfriend like it? If the answer is yes, it's hair metal. This assumes you had the normal "I don't like metal" type of girlfriend. If you dated Stephanie in high school, this doesn't apply to you ;) Also, hair metal bands broke big in the 80's and mostly faded in the 90s, with only a couple of exceptions. Ozzy, Van Halen, Judas Priest, etc were stars in the 70s and were not true hair metal bands, even if they did jump on the band wagon to sell records when it was hot. So with that...
We're Not Gonna Take It - Twisted Sister. Oh come on, like it could be anything else. The band was basically a caricature of the whole 80s thing, and they were essentially a one hit wonder with this song. But it is a great song that captures perfectly everything all of us rebels without a clue thought we were telling the world with our long hair and bad attitudes.
Round and Round - Ratt Unfortunately for Ratt, they spent most of the 80s trying to write another Round and Round. They never did. The last 80s metal concert I attended was Ratt. They played Jaxx in Springfield VA in 1998. Sold out the place, all 500 tickets.
In My Dreams - Dokken Adams was on the right track with the Dokken pick, but he picked the wrong song. If Dokken could have written more songs like this they would have been huge. Instead they pretty much never got off the B list.
You Give Love A Bad Name - Bon Jovi Jon Bon Jovi has undoubtedly proven to be the smartest hair metal alumnus. He has stayed relevant musically since his first album, and currently rates as one of my son's favorite artists.
Photograph - Def Leppard This may have been the first hair metal tune that your cheerleader girlfriend might have liked. Pyromania sold a gazillion copies and pretty much paved the way for everything that was to come.
2014 update: I've been to a bunch of hair metal concerts since I wrote this. Going to 80s metal shows has become a thing for me.