‘God, of course it was a bad idea, no need to tell me, don’t labour the point please’
‘Creative freedom, Sir…’
‘Never imagined the story to be so much nicer than reality? Really? Poor, poor man…’
Look, I know Grease was released 2 years earlier, and I know pitting Blues Brothers against Grease feels much better, even from the position of a 10 year old boy, with preadolescent hormones raging, and a secret crush on Olivia Newton-John, than reality, which was basically adults telling me to watch Blues Brothers even though I was actually more interested in the military violence of The Final Countdown.
So I wanted an epic battle between Grease and Blues Brothers, between hormones and one of the first (unsolicited) lessons in real music. Do you really think I should keep that story to myself, just because it’s not true in a purely factual sense? Look, I was 9 and it was 1978, no one would have allowed me to watch Grease in the cinema, but somehow I did anyway; almost all of its songs were released as single, using movie scenes as video clips. I knew all I needed to know. This chain of singles stretched the end of 70s timeline, which was already pretty blurry, with Deborah Harry, Olivia Newton-John and Chris Evert, all these hot blonde women, dancing, moving, seducing me on television.
By the time 1980 finally arrived…no, don’t stop me now…by the time 1980 finally arrived I was musically and mentally fucked up, ready to leave The Beatles if only I had somewhere else to go, ready for the journey but too scared to make a move. My most cherished piece of music was an ivory white, semi-see-through ‘Hopelessly devoted to you‘ single, taken from the Grease soundtrack. So don’t tell me it’s just a story. What’s the difference between story and reality anyway?
Chris Evert lost the 1980 Wimbledon final to Evonne Goolagong Cawley. A great tennis player, but 40 years down the line just as much forgotten as Mark David Chapman. That indeed is the killer of John Lennon. And indeed, that also happened in 1980. It was the closing of a chapter, the end of an era, the start of my musical development and the last horrible phase of the Cold War.
It’s not so strange to link Grease with Blues Brothers, not strange at all, my dear Sir!Tweet