By Adam Waldman
Welcome to the debut of Hard Rock Daddy’s newest feature – FEEL GOOD FRIDAY. With the world seemingly always on edge, and people more divided than ever, the one thing that we can all agree upon is music.
Music has the power to change your mood, to transport you to another place and time, and to give you an escape like nothing else.
This weekly feature will be a collaborative effort between Hard Rock Daddy contributors, readers, and artists themselves. Each week, we will be adding new songs to the “FEEL GOOD ROCK SONGS” playlist (see below). You can go directly to the YouTube video for each song by clicking on the link before the writeup.
VANDENBERG – “Friday Night” (1983)
What better way to launch this new feature than with a song that joyfully celebrates what Friday means to so many people.
“During the week, I’m only half alive…wasting my time all day from nine to five. Friday night…gonna let it go. Dynamite…ready to explode!”
The year was 1983. Early on in the “decade of decadence,” Vandenberg released their sophomore album, Heading For A Storm. This underrated project (featuring guitarist Adrian Vandenberg) seemed to be a perfect fit for the times. Inexplicably, the band only released three studio albums, the last one being in 1985.
Landing a prime gig as a guitarist in Whitesnake is a nice consolation prize for Vandenberg, whose solo project never reached its full potential.
Like the band itself, “Friday Night” should have been more popular with the masses. It had everything that you wanted in an ‘80s anthem…soaring vocals backed by melodic harmonies, a chugging rhythm, bright guitars, and a shredding solo. Lyrically, the song had the potential to be the anthem of the working man, but perhaps they were a few years too late…
LOVERBOY –“Working For The Weekend” (1981)
Not long after the launch of MTV, Loverboy released their sophomore album, Get Lucky. The album had a handful of hits that got played regularly on MTV, but none as big as “Working For The Weekend.” This song quickly became the anthem of the working man, and has never really faced much competition for the title in the years since. Nearly four decades later, this song is still played on radio stations around the country on Friday afternoons.
You might think that this feel good song was written by someone who experienced the daily grind, but it’s actually quite the opposite. While out walking and looking for inspiration in the middle of the week, Loverboy guitarist Paul Dean noticed that the area was pretty desolate. In an interview with Dean, he revealed that he was at the beach wondering where everyone was, and then figured out that they were all “waiting for the weekend.” Singer Mike Reno suggested changing the title to “Working For The Weekend,” and the rest (as they say) is history.
Interested in sharing your favorite feel good songs to help build this playlist?
Go to the Hard Rock Daddy Facebook page and send us a message letting us know which songs you would like to write about.