1980s Paranoia

The ’80s were awesome. After the grimy soulless despair of the 1970s, the ’80s were a cultural second wind for America.

But, as with anything, there were countercurrents.

For instance, there was a lot of paranoia in 1980s pop music. A lot.

Some of it was blatant, like one-hit-wonder Rockwell’s “Somebody’s Watching Me”:

Some only a little less so, taking an outside point of view, as in Hall & Oates’s “Private Eyes”:

Then we get into the creepy “I’m a stalker” songs, like “Every Breath You Take” from Police:

Or Rod Stewart’s “Infatuation”:

Sometimes the paranoia wasn’t in the song, but in the video, as with Yes’s “Owner Of A Lonely Heart”:

Sometimes the paranoia was Aussie flavored, as when Men At Work kept asking “Who Can It Be Now?”:

Other times, it was New Wave, like Animotion’s “Obsession”:

Heck, even “I love you just the way you are” Billy Joel got into the act, putting us all under “Pressure”:

All of that, and I didn’t even go into the nuclear war paranoia.

And yet, even so, the ’80s were awesome. I mean, how many of the above songs are bad, or even bland? I rest my case.

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