Are you ready to rock? The film “Rock of Ages” is set for release on June 15 and looks to be a fun romp through Hollywood 1987, when the Sunset Strip shook with promise as young bands and the stripper girls who loved them filled the clubs, sidewalks, parking lots, and back alleys, rocking to the beat of what would not-so-affectionately become known as “hair metal.”
I can tell you first hand what it was like back then. I was a young music journalist writing for fanzines about many of the bands on their way up. If the film makes it look like “nothing but a good time,” it really was — partying all night; sleeping all day; and working some crappy part time job to earn just enough for rent, hairspray, eyeliner, and gas money to the next gig.
While the film, based on the Broadway hit of the same name, appears to capture the essence of what the scene was like back then, I wasn’t so sure about the music soundtrack. I thought I would share the sounds of the bands I was going to see play the Strip in the year this movie is set. (Though some of the albums listed below weren’t released until a year or two later, after record deals were signed and recordings were made.)
Give ’em a listen and get ready to rock!
Guns N’ Roses, “Appetite for Destruction”
The ultimate in angry, rebellious rock ‘n’ roll led by the infamous Axl Rose. This whiskey- and heroin-soaked bunch of delinquents were expected to rule the world.
L.A. Guns, “Cocked and Loaded”
Chock full of black leather, bad boy rock that brought a little bit of punk cool and big-haired metal to the Sunset Strip. This album also features cameo backing vocals by Robin Zander and Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick.
Poison, “Look What the Cat Dragged In”
Through all the makeup, flashy clothes, feather boas, spandex, and onstage antics, there are some time-tested hits from this band of big-haired pretty boys.
Faster Pussycat, “Faster Pussycat”
With sleaze-loving, gypsy-glam rock, these Pussycats brought some underground cred to the Strip. Singer Taime Downe also co-founded the world-famous club Cathouse, a popular hangout for rock and metal bands of the time.
Warrant, “Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking Rich”
Considered a little lighter fare than the bands above, Warrant did charm the Strip with hooky pop glam and a wise-crackin’ sense of fun. The band’s debut capitalized on the hit-making formula of the time with the power ballad “Heaven.”
Now that your education is complete, go party on with Stacee Jaxx in “Rock of Ages” June 15. Don’t forget to bang your head!
Find showtimes and tickets near you on Yahoo! Movies.