This may or may not be totally true, and I may be misremembering, but damn it this is my legend and I’m going to tell it.
It was in the early 80’s. My parents got cable TV. Back then cable wasn’t something everyone had, and my parents weren’t all that in to TV to begin with. Plus there were only a dozen or so cable channels plus HBO which cost more money and I don’t think we had it. Our TV was roughly the size of the monitor that I’m typing this one. My brother and I still spent more time in front of the TV than my parents were comfortable with so they cut off the cable after about a year.
One of the early channels was the rightly maligned MTV. MTV is dumb and it always has been. People complain about how they never show music anymore, but it was always shitty and full of stupid shows.
I hated the 80s. I still do. I hate the garish colors, the fact that every producer forget there was a bass dial on their mixing board. I hated the synth sounds. I hated the ridiculous clothes. I hated hair metal. I hated pretty much all of it.
But one day, this came on:
This was something different than the 80s junk that MTV always had on. It was in black and white, in some gritty place that I had never been inside. It was raw, it was loud, it was nasty. Everyone in the video, even the people watching had attitude.
I didn’t know who this woman was. I didn’t even think of her as a woman. I thought of her as the awesomest person I had ever seen. I wanted to be her.
That’s not to say I wanted to be a woman, but I didn’t think of it that way. I wanted to join that world. I wanted to be in that bar, I wanted to play the guitar like that. I even wanted to have my hair like her, even though it took me decades to get around to make most of that happen. But I don’t think I would have ever loved Rock and Roll like I do without Joan.
Damn, forgot the include this- it wasn’t until a few years back I knew Joan’s biggest hit was actually a cover-
The original’s not bad, but Joan definitely did the better version.