Twisted MixTape 42 – 80’s New Wave

mixtape jenkehl 200

This week’s theme is to make a mixtape of your favorite dance music or dance club mixes. It was requested by our very good friend of mixtape – Kir from The Kir Corner. She lost her brother suddenly at the end of they year, he loved music so much. And especially mixing up the dance music as a DJ.

What better way to honor his life than to boogie on down with him in mind?

There are three distinctive times in my life dance or club music were prominent.

In the mid-late 80’s first at under age clubs; our’s was called McGreevy’s or lovingly McSleezy’s. It was strictly under 18, with a bar, so that was cool. Because, you know, you could walk up to the bar and order a coke.  Then when I passed the 18 benchmark I was old enough to play with the big folks and spend the end of the 80’s hanging out at Medusa’s – the hottest alternative dance club in Chicago.

Random 80’s memory alert: Do you remember creepers? They were like wearing Doc Martins, but more like a shoe with an even bigger sole and wider rounded toes?

In my mid 20’s we (me, my sister, and our friend Chris, a boy, who could seriously dance) started going to a club in Chicago (that for the life of me I can’t remember the name of) which only played disco music. Now THAT rocked! They had the colored floor ala Saturday Night Fever, the disco ball, even the freaks dressing up like it was still the 70’s. However I really covered the 70’s pretty thoroughly over at Raised on the Radio for this post. So if you’re craving 70’s disco head over there.

And then there was the late 90’s (my late 20’s) my sister and I were both unmarried with really good jobs and basically had more money than we knew what to do with. OK not really. But we had enough to take two cruises a year and that was AWESOME! We got so into it, bought the ball gowns for the formal dinners and everything. We loved it so much that I got married on a cruise ship! Wait…where was I going? Oh right! Disco on the cruise ship! I was so not listening to pop music in the 90’s certainly not club music. But thanks to those cruises there will be some songs I will never forget, even if I try to scrub my brain from the inside out and stick hot pokers into my ears.

Enough time has not passed to make me revisit songs like Mambo #5 and I’m Blue (Da Ba Dee) but, amazingly, enough has passed that I actually find I enjoy listening to the songs from my first foray into clubbing.

Stomping With My Creepers and Bringing The House Down

This is me, sitting in the hall in high school. I saved that jacket that I bought at the most famous thrift shop in Chicago, Flashy Trash. I paid 8 bucks. Someday I bet Isaiah will love to have it! Ha.
This is me, sitting in the hall in high school. Some things to note: there is a green vine drawn from the corner of my eye, down my face. I have multiple piercings in my left ear and that FU look, it was permanant. I saved that jacket – I bought at the most famous thrift shop in Chicago, Flashy Trash. Paid 8 bucks, Isaiah will thank me someday. Ha.


And now….if everyone could please follow me to the dark side? Here you will see a 18yo Jen, well, you won’t recognize her. But she will be doing a dance that could only be described as the stomp. Basically hundreds of kids stomping their feet in time to the beat in their giant creepers or Doc Martin’s on the second floor of an old brownstone in Chicago to a new trend that would be known in the future as 80’s New Wave Music. It’s a wonder the floor never caved in.

Ministry with Everyday is Halloween – By the way, this song was our anthem. “Why are you dressed like it’s halloween?”


The Cult – She Sells Sanctuary


Siouxsie & The Banshees with Cities in Dust


The Cure – Close To Me


Sorry I just got so darn nostalgic I couldn’t leave this one out.
The Cure – Love Cats


New Order – Blue Monday

That's me on the left, it's a year later and I'm attempting to grow out a green mohawk. That explains the odd color and shape of my hair, although I think I was pretty stylin then.  And Yes - I'm hiding a cigarette behind my back. And doing a bad job of it.
That’s me on the left, it’s a year later and I’m attempting to grow out a green mohawk. That explains the odd color and shape of my hair, although I think I was pretty stylin then. And Yes – I’m hiding a cigarette behind my back. And doing a bad job of it.


You guys have been so awesome! I appreciate you coming to play so much, now share your MixTape with all of us. The best part of this party is we get to hear so much music that may be new, may be forgotten or may be just what you wanted to hear right now.

These are the rules. Five songs (do your best to stick to it, I really do listen to every mix and I don’t want you to wait). Stick to the theme (as best you can). Try and check out at least two of the other players or more! (everyone wants to share their tunes with you).

Create a mix, not a “hey look at all the cool songs I know” we’re not snobs, if you were our best bud and you were gonna make us a tape, what would it be? And share this party so more people will play next week!

Do me a favor, if you’re a veteran, try to visit at least one person you’ve never visited before.


And now, The List of all Lists

January 28 – One of your friends is feeling down and needs to feel better. Make a mix to make him/her feel better. This can be songs you know your friend will love or songs meant to cheer someone up. You decide.
February 4 – A mix to Get Motivated. Whether it’s to workout, write or just get out of bed. Mix it up!
February 11 – Love to Love you baby. (Or friend or kid or dog or cat, whatever)
February 18 – We’re back to your choice, play us what you want, we’ll listen!
February 25 – Guilty Pleasures-the songs and or groups that you hate to admit that you love… (Thank you Sarah from The Sadder but Wiser Girl)
March 4 – If My Life Had A Soundtrack…


If you’re still here, thanks! I would love it if you checked out my site, Raised on the Radio we got hacked a few weeks ago and are eeeekkkking our way back up the search engine ranks, any click-thru or better yet share will help us get back to our rightful place!

Twisted MixTape Tuesday 14

The 80’s – the decade of big hair. Isn’t that how we remember it? For me, the 80’s is a pretty expansive decade. Being a decade baby (born on the actual decade – yes I made that term up) the decades seem pretty huge to me. Especially the 80’s. It started in my early adolescence, then there was middle school, high school, and my first year of college, that’s a lot of music to cover. So excuse me if I cheat. Because I’m going to. So, for The 80’s part 1 I am going to start in the middle.

In 1985 I started high school; I was always a floater. Never one of the popular kids, never one of the Geeks, always in between – somewhere in the nether regions of the social strata. I was an artist, a musician, a good student, athletic (although I hated being in the sports I was coerced to participate in by my “convinced I needed it for college” parents) but I still had that desire to push the limits. The popular group of kids pushed too, so I hung with them all through middle school. I was still on the outside – they did not “get” me.

I hadn’t seen my friends all summer when I walked into the high school to buy my books for freshman year. When my friends from middle school spied the beginnings of a mohawk and blue stripes dyed in the shaven sides of my head, I was immediately ostracized. Welcome to my high school experience. FYI – all of your fave John Hughes movies were filmed in my neck of the woods, I wasn’t quite Ally Sheedy to Molly Ringwald, but it was pretty darn close.

That’s me on the left.


There was one place I was always accepted absolutely. No strings attached. It didn’t matter who I was at home, actually my unique blend of personality traits was quite acceptable there. Summer camp, not just any summer camp, a camp I went to for 8 weeks every summer for 10 years.  At 7 years old, my parents stuck me on a bus in June, visited once in July and didn’t see me again until August. Yup, as a mom it seems unfathomable for me, but back in the 70’s  – if you could afford it – it was pretty common place in my neighborhood to rid yourself of your kids for the summer. Lucky for me they picked the best place in the world. Harand Camp – Theater in the Sun. (I’m in good company, among other famous alum – because you know I’m famous – are Billy Zane, Virginia Madsen and Jeremy Piven) At Harand it didn’t matter if you were a geek, an artist, popular, athletic or just weird. Because at Harand; “No Man is an Island.” (this is an actual video from the camp) Every time the whole camp would gather for some event, we would sing that song, with our arms over each others shoulders. And you know what? We really meant it.

When you get a group of kids together who love to sing and perform, you’re bound to get a pretty good mix of musical tastes. It was here that I first started listening to New Wave Music, and later got in to what the new Punk Rock was called “Hard Core.” Of course it was also here that my love of show tunes was fostered, and beautiful harmonies sung to the classics were created. For now, we’ll go with what got the most play on our old cassette players in our cabin.

There’s going to be two parts to this list, I can’t figure out how to name them… how about Happy List and The Ally Sheedy List


The Happy List

Club Tropicana – Wham

I Want Candy – Bow Wow Wow

Rich Girl – Hall & Oates

Apache – Sugar Hill Gang (this is back when rap was something)


The Ally Sheedy List

Mad World – Tears For Fears

Wouldn’t it be Good – Nik Kershaw

Only You – Yaz

Close to Me – The Cure

New Order – True Faith (As I entered my senior year in high school my gift for theater mixed with my love of music and art found a new expression. I became the lighting director for all of the school productions. If only I knew that you were “allowed” to make this a career. This song was the last one I directed, I still hear the lighting cues in my head when I listen.)


This picture was taken at camp it is half costume – half reality. We did a costume ball, I didn’t really need to dress up, that was the real me; my boyfriend was Ziggy Stardust – the only part that was a costume for him was the lightning; the hair, the eye makeup – all him. This one is for Lance from My Blog Can Beat Up Your Blog. I promised him this picture a while back, here it is.


Now it’s your turn. I want to hear what you’ve got! This week’s them is The 80’s Part 1, so – if you’re doing the math – Part 2 will be next week.

The rules of Twisted MixTape are as such: Try and create a 5 song mix based on this week’s theme. As we move through the decades the assumption is you know about the music in the past, but not what is to come. Create your own post and link it up, or put your mix in the comments. If you’re going to link-up there must be a song – relating to the theme – in your post. Share this all over the place, the more the merrier. And Go visit my lovely, mostly Co-Host – Kristi at Finding Ninee. She’s always got a song, a funny story and some silly Drawrings. Mostly, just have fun, there’ s no pressure here.

If you must own these songs, and I know you must, click these links to go to iTunes:

Club Tropicana – Fantastic
I Want Candy – The Best of Bow Wow Wow
Rich Girl – The Very Best of Daryl Hall & John Oates (Remastered)
Apache – The Sugar Hill Records Story
Mad World – The Hurting (Remastered)
Wouldn’t It Be Good – Pretty In Pink (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Only You – Upstairs At Eric’s
Close to Me – The Head On the Door
True Faith – Total