Hong Kong stages ’80s revival with gigs by Spandau Ballet, Tears for Fears, and more

Hong Kong stages ’80s revival with gigs by Spandau Ballet, Tears for Fears, and more

Mark Sharp
Spandau Ballet

The ’80s are back in Hong Kong – or have they only just arrived?

How else can one explain upcoming concerts by Spandau Ballet – making their Hong Kong debut – Tears for Fears, Elton John and, until it was cancelled, Alison Moyet? Not to mention Bon Jovi, who are staging their own mini-’80s revival in Macau.

Perhaps Hong Kong was so wrapped up in Canto-pop the dawn of the MTV era passed the city by. The 1980s for Hong Kong was, after all, the era when the likes of Leslie Cheung Kwok-wing, Alan Tam Wing-lun, Sandy Lam Yik-lin and Anita Mui Yim-fong would regularly fill the Hong Kong Coliseum.

HK 80s Concerts2
Spandau Ballet

Spandau Ballet, led by suave baritone Tony Hadley, were among the most successful of the New Romantics. Before they switched to suits and ties, the London lads were the epitome of the movement’s signature androgynous look, incorporating baggy shirts with shawls draped over the shoulder, headbands and plenty of make-up. They also had a habit of lodging their guitars under their armpits. Spandau burst into the British charts in 1980 with the fast-paced electronic pop of To Cut a Long Story Short.

Spandau Ballet – To Cut A Long Story Short 
Watch video… https://youtu.be/JE2sCISQmpE

Their sound matured and the group had their first No 1 three years later with the ballad True, their most popular US release. This was followed by the No 2 single Gold. Those and other, later, songs have done well to stand the test of time.

The band split up in 1990 and brothers Martin and Gary Kemp detoured into acting, playing mobster brothers in movie The Krays, among other roles. The group re-formed in 2009, having by then grown into their baggy clothing, and put out a comeback album of largely reworked material.

Spandau Ballet – September 25, AsiaWorld-Arena, Lantau

HK 80s Concerts3
Tears For Fears

Tears for Fears started out as a bleak, men-in-black indie synth-rock band but went on to become a huge global mainstream act. The British duo, comprising Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith, had their first taste of success in 1982 with the brooding, moody Mad World.

Tears For Fears – Mad World
Watch video…  https://youtu.be/u1ZvPSpLxCg

Later hits included the infinitely more upbeat Everybody Wants to Rule the World (watch video) – which won a Brit Award for best single – and Sergeant Pepper-inspired Sowing the Seeds of Love.

The duo parted ways in 1991 over “musical differences”, with Orzabal keeping the group’s name alive. In 2000, they met up again and the result was a new album, Everybody Loves a Happy Ending.

Amid anxieties over press freedom in Hong Kong, Tears for Fears may have been the first name on organisers’ minds when it was time to booking their evening’s entertainment.

Tears For Fears – October 10, FCC Charity Ball (open to non-members), HK Convention and Exhibition Centre, Wan Chai

HK 80s Concerts4

Leading the charge should have been Alison Moyet, who had a September 13 date at the Convention and Exhibition Centre. The gig was cancelled this week, however, due to “unforeseen circumstances”. Moyet became an overnight sensation in Britain in 1982 after placing a magazine ad touting her soulful, bluesy vocals. Former Depeche Mode songwriter Vince Clarke gave her a call and the result was Yazoo. The duo were best known for poppy hits such as Only You and Don’t Go, from the album Upstairs at Eric’s.

Yazoo – Only You
Watch video…  https://youtu.be/SdvZa46xb3M

They parted ways as quickly as they arrived, and Clarke formed another chart-topping band, Erasure. Moyet went on to release a successful solo album, Alf, which spawned the hits All Cried Out and Invisible. She has continued to release albums over the years but never reached the dizzying heights of her ’80s success.

HK 80s Concerts5
Bon Jovi

American rockers Bon Jovi, meanwhile, will take their ’80s party to Macau for two nights at the Venetian – the first gig clashing with Spandau Ballet. Known for their big hair and equally big stadium anthems, the band’s most successful hits sprang from the 1986 album Slippery When Wet, including Livin’ on a Prayer, Wanted Dead or Alive and You Give Love a Bad Name.

Bon Jovi – Wanted Dead Or Alive
Watch video…  https://youtu.be/SRvCvsRp5ho?list=PLmfMgqsFYhSN7tt9NaOY3SsuMrsQbnIFa

The band, headed by the charismatic Jon Bon Jovi, seem fated to miss Hong Kong. In 1993 – before the Convention Centre, AsiaWorld-Arena and Kitec existed – Bon Jovi were booked to play at Ocean Park. Typhoon Dot blew in instead, and the rockers cancelled. Another case of “unforeseen circumstances”.

Bon Jovi – September 25 and 26, The Venetian Macao

HK 80s Concerts6
Elton John

In November, old favourite Elton John returns on his All the Hits Tour – just days before the Clockenflap music festival kicks off. The veteran piano man has played in the city numerous times and was last here in 2012. John was a star of the ’70s and had almost been written off as a has-been by the ’80s, but remaind a mainstay of the charts over the ’90s and beyond. His biggest singles from the ’80s were Sad Songs Say So Much and Nikita.

ELTON JOHN – NIKITA HD (original music video) – YouTube
Watch video… https://youtu.be/wOWOqBkTnRM

Elton John – November 24, HK Convention and Exhibition Centre, Wan Chai

It’s probably only a matter of time before ABC, The Communards, Culture Club, Go West, Heaven 17, Howard Jones, The Human League (who made their city debut in 2011), Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, Soft Cell, Tubeway Army, Ultravox, and Visage head our way.

PUBLISHED : Friday, 04 September, 2015, 2:09pm
UPDATED : Friday, 04 September, 2015, 2:59pm

# NewRomantics

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Robert Chaen

Global CEO-Founder of ChangeU and Movsha Movers & Shakers, Hero-CEO Whisperer, Writer, The #1 Alpha Change Expert, Father of Asian FireWalking Robert Chaen is an International Keynote Speaker, writer, researcher, and corp games designer. He is famously known to be the “Hero-CEO Whisperer”, 1-on1 coaching with many CEOs and Celebrities for corporate strategies, staff & office political issues, personal branding, and even public figure OSHA safety drilling called Drager Defense. He has transformed CEOs and managers in Coca-Cola China, TVB Hong Kong, Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong Airport Services, VADS, TM, Public Bank, Auditor General's Office Maldives, etc. He is the prolific creator and online Author of innovative management tools such as DragonCEO, Diamond Leader, Papillon Personal Effectiveness, OSHA Drager Defense, KPI Bank, etc. He is also the Founder of Movsha, an international networking with monthly mingles with MOVers & SHAkers, Angels, Entrepreneurs, CEOs, Celebrities, HR-PR-CSR, HODs, and the Most Influential IDEA people. ​Chaen is widely considered as one of the top International Platform Keynote Speakers for Resorts World Genting Senior Management Conference (Manila), 7-Eleven HK, Samsung, Coca-Cola China Mini-MBA @Tsing Hua University, Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong Jockey Club, The Story Conference where he interviewed Datuk Kamarudin (Chairman of AirAsia) and Siti Nurhaliza. He has been widely featured in TVB, AWSJ, CNBC, SCMP, The Star, and Sin Chew. As “The Father of Asian FireWalking”, he coached TVB celebrities (Ekin Cheng Yee-Kin) to walk on 650°C fire; and raised HK$68M in the world’s 1st and only live TV Charity FireWalk (TVB Tung Wah Charity Show), before Tony Robbins even came to Asia. If Robert can get you to walk on 650⁰C fire, he can inspire you to be THE BEST. He champions CN-HK-EU-US Tycoons to be philanthropic, and to be angel investors to support the next generation of Jack Mas, Steve Jobs, Richard Bransons, Steven Spielbergs, or Barrack Obamas. With some slick motivational speakers with fake doctorates out there, graduates often describe Robert to be "the most credible, empowering, truthful Coach" who believe in his graduates to believe in themselves. ​However, clients have described Robert as "The #1 Cool Badass Alpha Change Expert". He has the coolest first class stature, rapport and trust from clients. He will not hesitate to tell the badass truth ever so gently because clients are paying him big bucks to reveal the truth, find solutions, persuade the hostile HODs, and align cross-teams within the organization. Originally based in Hong Kong for 20+ years, he had worked with top Branding/Ad agencies at J Walter Thompson and Leo Burnett, and was a certified FranklinCovey (7 Habits) in USA, and NLP MasterCoach (USA). His warmth is known to soften the most hardened, resistant sceptics. He will inspire your team to Go for Top 1, or to be a Dragon CEO. With boundless energies, Robert owns 15+ successful business Joint-Ventures, and created unique products under his global VC network called Chaen's Angels VC. He is deeply passionate about ChangeUTH Youth CSR, Science-Based Medicine (vs. quackery), short films and Reality TV. Touched by a personal tragedy through the loss of his HK-born Portuguese wife, co-coach and business partner, Brenda José of 18 years, Robert explores the many ways in which the spirit world is communicating with the living with real scientific studies and evidence. He gives inspiring conferences on The Secret Afterlife.

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