Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Bonnie Hayes With The Wild Combo - Good Clean Fun (1982)

"IT'S NEW TO ME" WEEK (OCTOBER 20-26, 2013) 

Like the Josie Cotton albums featured earlier this week, this album is another fantastic find stemming from the Valley Girl soundtrack.  The two Bonnie Hayes songs included in that movie are the first two tracks on this album (Girls Like Me and Shelly's Boyfriend).  This is my favorite CD purchase of the past 6 months; it flips my switch for sure.  Classic New Wave - uptempo, hook-filled, retro power pop sound complete with Farfisa organ.  Hayes is not only a great songwriter, she's got the perfect voice for this type of music.  Even hard-to-please critic Robert Christgau wrote, "she comes off smarter, surer, and more sisterly than just about any new rock and roll woman I can think of." Agreed.

In a ★★★★½ review, Allmusic calls this a "neglected '80s pop masterpiece." I have no idea how Hayes wasn't a bigger pop star - let's blame the record label.  More than any album I've mentioned this week, this is the one I wish I had picked up when it was released.  It would have gotten plenty of playing time in the Markmobile when I was in high school.  As it is, this disc hasn't left my truck's player much since I got it. Highly recommended.

From what I can tell, Hayes teaches songwriting at Boston's Berklee College of Music.  If this album is any indication, they're lucky to have her; I'd take a class with her anytime.

Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart:  Did not chart.  It was "bubbling under" at 206.

Tracks:  I can't get enough of 'em.  In addition to Girls Like Me and Shelly's Boyfriend, I really dig Joyride and The Last Word.  Hayes' strong songwriting skills are clearly on display in Coverage (she would later write songs like this for Bonnie Raitt).  The only song that doesn't quite work is Raylene, but that's just because the bass line doesn't really fit the Latin style until about 2 minutes in.  Still, it's not so bad that I'll skip it.

Personal Memory Associated with this CD:  None.


  1. Been waiting for you to post this ever since you said you got it.

    It's soooo goood. Smart (which is not a word you can throw around a lot in pop music) and sassy, cool and catchier than a team of Golden Glove winners. The album is basically a self-contained power source.

    Hayes released more music sans Wild Combo and not up to the same energy level as this one but still leaps and bounds ahead of most everything else. Snag 'em when you see 'em.

    Definitely gonna listen to the album sometime this weekend. If ears could drool...

    The only other CD I know you have that you haven't reviewed yet is Big Star. Can't wait for that one. But I will.

  2. I do not own this one (yet) but I have it on my list to review on 2017 for its 35th anniversary (I missed it on the first go-round for 1982 albums in 2012). By then, I hope to have this one in my collection and have listened to it numerous times.