We love the Encyclopedia of New Wave

My New Favorite Book and Trying to Answer the Question: What IS New Wave?

We here at “Imaginary Headquarters” are counting down to and gearing up for the big day – our New Wave Night at Chop Suey on June 17, 2018. {PLEASE COME! DETAILS HERE!!!}

As part of the party prep, I’m making lists and mix tapes of my favorite New Wave songs and digging deep into research (i.e. reminding myself of my childhood obsessions and “Baby’s First Favorite Bands!”). A favorite find along the way is The Encyclopedia of New Wave by Daniel Bukszpan.

The book has brought back a bunch of memories (Falco, Gene Loves Jezebel) and taught me about folks I’ve never even heard of (Lene Lovich, Cactus World News). It’s also left me with a question:

What IS New Wave?

In the book, Bukszpan breaks out New Wave into eight categories:

New Romantic

  • “Dancing with Tears in My Eyes” by Ultravox
  • “Planet Earth” by Duran Duran

Power Pop

  • “What I Like About You” by the Romantics
  • “My Sharona” by The Knack

Synthpop

  • “Don’t Go” by Yazoo
  • “Video Killed the Radio Star” by the Buggles

Goth

  • “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” by Bauhaus
  • “Cities in Dust” by Siouxsie and the Banshees

Neopsychedelia

  • “Pictures On My Wall” by Echo and the Bunnymen
  • “Tantalized” by The Church

Hi-NRG

  • “You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)” by Dead or Alive
  • “Venus” by Bananarama

Neue Deutsche Welle

  • “Rock Me Amadeus” by Falco
  • “99 Luft Balloons” by Nena

Blue-Eyed Soul

  • “Karma Chameleon” by Culture Club
  • “Sisters Are Doin It For Themselves” by Annie Lenox

What flavor of New Wave are you?

I’m Synthpop with a heavy splash of Neue Deutsche Welle and New Romantic.

Here’s a video sampler of the above songs so you can narrow it down.

If it’s not obvious already, I would totally recommend this book – if not for all the information, but because it’s one of the funniest music reference books I’ve read. I used to think that if I wrote a book, I would aim for it to be as perfect as High Fidelity. Now I just wish I could write captions and swipes as good as the ones in the The Encyclopedia of New Wave.

And speaking of great New Wave-related reads, I strongly suggest you read the Paper magazine article about Tina Weymouth {Talking Heads} – and all the credit she is due for being a pioneer (for many reasons): 40 Years Later, Talking Heads’ Most Valuable Member Is Still Its Most Under-Recognized

Join us on June 17, 2018 at Chop Suey for TIG’s NEW WAVE NIGHT!

The night will feature:

  • Some of Seattle’s most stellar rockers will take the stage to sing a couple of their favorite New Wave songs in front of the TIG backing band.
  • The New Wave band portion will be followed by a New Wave Dance Party with DJ Mike Steve, and the smashing sounds of New Wave Karaoke KJ’d by the fabulous Baby Ketten in which you can karaoke your favorite New Wave hits!
  • Drop by the (free) 80’s photo booth to capture you and yours in your super-finery, and {in true imaginary fashion} some additional surprises!

It’s TIG’s 16th anniversary of being Seattle’s indie-pop press so we’re going New Wave to the maxxx! All the details are HERE!

New Wave Night - 2018! Three Imaginary Girls' party celebrating 16 years as Seattle's indie-pop press. Join us June 17, 2018 at Chop Suey!!!

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