Friday, February 18, 2011

Retro Friday: I Ran (So Far Away)

Today's edition of Retro Friday features the band Flock of Seagulls and the song I Ran (So Far Away).

Ahhh, A Flock of Seagulls. When I think of retro/alternative music from the 80's ... they are definitely one of the quintessential 80's bands that comes to my mind. From the retro, electronic keyboard sound ... to the hair ... you gotta love the hair!

A Flock of Seagulls was started by Mike Score and his brother Ali in 1979 in Liverpool. Mike, who was previously a hairdresser (go figure!), played keyboards, guitar, and vocals, Ali played drums and their friend Frank Maudsley played bass.

Taking the name A Flock of Seagulls, inspired from the book Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach, the band started out playing shows in small venues. Club goers loved the driving electronic beat of elecommunications which became a dance club hit across England. And would forever come to remember the sight of the band - particularly Mike Score - singing, playing his synthesizer, and sporting a most unusual haircut of which his long blonde, heavily gelled, bang would cascade down over his forehead and eyebrows like a waterfall.

With the waterfall haircut and more so their music, so electronic, yet melodic and charged with emotion, A Flock of Seagulls soon became one of the darlings of the music industry. After signing a record contract, and touring in the US, in 1982 they released their first self titled album - Flock of Seagulls? To their swelling ranks of fans in the US and UK, the album was magical. I Ran - the first single off the album - is a song about being abducted by a UFO which came into the houses of many young Americans when MTV (then in its infancy) played it over and over and over.

In it Mike wears his waterfall haircut, as he and the band play in a room decorated with aluminum foil as the camera pans around and around. The video was simplistic but the futuristic images, sight of the band, and the superior music drove I Ran to 9th place on US charts. The band is recognized for breaking the ground for other musical acts during the advent of the video music area.

My side story on the Flock of Seagulls is as follows. When I first got a MySpace page, it was when my High School was planning our last High School reunion, and so a lot of us were connecting with each other on MySpace. This guy sent me a friend request, and I was not totally sure who he was. We chatted a little bit back and forth before I finally accepted. (His original comment was ... Damn, your page is locked down tighter than Fort Knox! haha) He was a year older than me in High School, but had married a girl from my class, and when he was explaining to me what he looked like in High School (because now he is FOLLICALLY-CHALLENGED) he said ... "I had Flock of Seagulls hair."

When I read that, I seriously almost spit out my soda. I immediately went and got my year book, and sure enough, there he was and his Flock of Seagulls hair. Love. It.

So every time I hear a Flock of Seagulls song ... not only am I taken back to the 80's ... but I also think of all of the crazy hair that we all had in the 80's (including my awesome, totally rad, mall bangs! *see below*)

Okay ... here's a little Flock of Seagulls and I Ran (So Far Away) for your listening pleasure!



  1. Wow, thank you for bringing an awesome album back to life.
    I went straight to my attic, rummaged through my LPs, picked the Flock of Seagulls album from one of the storage boxes.
    When my daughter saw me, with my precious Vinyls, she thought it was something from another planet :-)

    And you guessed it, i will bore you with another of my high school stories. Lol.
    As you were speaking of "Hair-Style" i picked also a Visage album from my attic.
    Back the day, we were simply "cool", wearing Fiorucci Jeans, Benetton Sweatshirts and of course spend a reasonable amount of time on getting your hair in shape. (Yeah boys did that).
    You can imagine, that obviously a catholic boarding school was a total "un-cool" place. So we had an off-site party (which was not allowed) with the girls. Music was fine and loud.
    At the time the police raided the place, Visage - The Damned Don't Cry was on the turntable. Result: Under-age drinking & disorderly conduct charges, which resulted in a weeks detention room and a months "voluntary" social work in the monastery.
    And you should know: In germany the legal drinking age is 16.

    So here is Visage - The Damned Don't Cry

    Whenever i hear this song, i look over my shoulder and fully expect a SWAT team to breach into the room.

    Oh and i found a couple of other Vinyls from the '80, with background stories, but that on other Friday… ;-)

  2. Great story, Stefan!!! I can't wait to hear the rest of your background stories too!!! :)

  3. Ha ha ha, i bet. You know what the problem is in general? I do not necessarily want my daughter to know, what "things" i did when i was young. Parenting can be a b***h (uh, swear word!).

  4. Good stuff Lisa. My brother also had the FOS haircut. I will email you some pix. The picture above of the 3 of us was actually taken in late 1991 or early 1992 in my family's living room (nice sheers, huh?). How do I know? Christine (L) and I became friends after I was at Moorpark College (that's me with the hat. I actually thought of that hat just last week. Really? I wore a hat? Weird! Anything for fashion, I guess!). Fun blog, glad you turned me on to it. - Amber

  5. Stefan, I understand 100%, especially with Offspring #1 headed to High School in the fall! ahhhhhhh........

  6. AM!! Thanks for the feedback!! I love that pic of us!! That was a great week ... spring break '91 ... good times indeed! I think KROQ was the soundtrack of our High School days, no? :) Kevin & Bean, Jed the Fish ... rad!