Welcome to a wonderful world when we were young, when a golden future beckoned and our hearts beat to a fusion of punk, soul, Motown, new wave, new romantic, rock ‘n roll and reggae.
When Bowie, Queen and Marley collided with The Clash, The Jam and The Police and spawned The Cure, Depeche Mode and The Specials.
When Spandau Ballet danced with Duran Duran and a band with Bunnymen in it achieved cult status. When the Dead Kennedys held hands with the Psychedelic Furs and skipped up the charts. When The Exploited screamed Maggie is a Cunt! and Bow Wow Wow wanted candy.
When The Stranglers sneered and The Nolans smiled and Debbie Harry did the watusi and Adam charmed and George Michael jitterbugged and Boy George wondered if you really wanted to hurt him.
When Bauhaus tripped the light fantastic and Siouxsie wore her dress up tight. And still Quo played on.
Welcome to 80s pop, a haphazard, ludicrous mish mash of genius. Such a moment required a haphazard, ludicrous mish mash of genius to reflect it all.
It was the first publication to have a flexi-disc featuring an exclusive track from a major chart act taped to the cover of every issue.
To steady the gaily coloured disc on the turntable, we advised people to place a 10p piece on the bit in the middle of the record that states, ‘Place coin here’. This really was pure pulp for pinheads. And they played like a dream. Some were double-sided. Some were EPs!
It was a great gimmick. Sales soared and Flexipop! became an established title alongside Smash Hits and, later, No. 1, both owned by giant publishing corporations. Our mag was totally independent – created by two ex-Record Mirror journalists with a gentle twist of ambition in their y fronts. Consequently we could do what we wanted.
And we got banned.
But for three carefree years from 1980-83, we had a ball working on the strangest pop magazine in history.
I hope you, too, have a ball reliving those years with us. Or should that be, I hope you two…?
Anyway, welcome. Loosen your load, have a stroll back through the years and remember what you miss.
Incidentally, all the acts mentioned at the beginning featured in Flexipop! Apart from Bob Marley, who was dead for most of it.
So, what are you waiting for? Get Flexipoppin’!
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