In April of 1980, Terry Fox dipped his right foot (prosthetic) into the Atlantic Ocean with a plan to run cross-country to raise money for cancer research – he made it as far as Thunder Bay. On September 1, from the back of an ambulance, he announced that the marathon would have to wait until later, because the cancer had now spread to his lungs. He died in June of 1981 at 22 years of age. His Marathon of Hope has become an annual tradition that raises millions of dollars for cancer research every year.
We had plenty to celebrate during the 1980’s. Expo ’86 was held in Vancouver, The Winter Olympics in Calgary in 1988, and the Edmonton Oilers Stanley Cup dynasty from 1984 – 1988!
Fashion disasters were abundant during the decade, including shoulder pads for women, the power suit, acid wash jeans, and leg warmers!
1980’s CanCon went from disco, right into straight ahead pop (with some drum machines and synthesizers along the way). We created superstars out of an army brat from Kingston, a pouty pretty boy from Montreal, and a group of handsome boys from Vancouver!
Canadian music also lead to our first national video channel, which began broadcasting in 1984, called MuchMusic! (Two of the VJs (video Jockeys) were 1970’s recording artist Christopher Ward – and future CNN White House Correspondant John (JD) Roberts).
With Claudja Barry’s “Boogie Oogie (Dancin’ Shoes)” still ringing in our ears, we proudly brought: Bryan Adams “Run To You”, Corey Hart’s “Sunglasses At Night”, Men Without Hats “Safety Dance” and Alannah Myles “Black Velvet” to the rest of the world!
So sit back with your boombox, put aside your game of Trivial Pursuit (also Canadian), and have a stroll down memory lane with MAPL Mel.