Made For TV On The Radio

When I was in high school, I spent countless hours talking about music (and music videos on MTV, because the channel still played them at that time) with friends. We were obsessed with music. I’ve written a lot of posts about my favorites (Berlin, Duran Duran, and of course, Adam Ant), but a song popped into my head the other day that made me laugh, because the memory of it is something I can’t believe I hadn’t yet used for blog fodder.

I’m pretty sure it was because of my friend Cyndi having had a brother in college back in 1984, but my little group of friends suddenly started listening to college radio. The music on college radio stations was (and still is) typically in the alternative genre, very unlike anything on Top 40 radio (hence the “alternative” label). To be honest, I didn’t get it. I didn’t enjoy the music very much, but I continued to listen to it because “all of my friends were doing it”.

All of my friends and I were also calling into the station on certain nights of the week when a certain DJ was in the booth, to make song requests and to try and keep him on the phone chatting, because we were high school girls and he was a college boy and that’s what high school girls do: try to get and keep the attention of college boys. (As the mother of a college-aged boy now, this whole memory cracks me up!) I imagine that college DJ got a pretty nice ego boost from these crazy girls calling in all the time, and it was fun for us as well, excitedly reporting back to each other the following day with details of our conversations.

I had finally heard one song that I really liked, and requested it every single time I called him. The song was called “So Afraid of the Russians”, by a band called Made For TV. It was very timely, as we were still in the midst of the Cold War (P.S. I’m officially old), and it’s super-catchy though not Grammy-worthy, as you’ll no doubt agree when you hear it: I was thrilled to find it on YouTube.

I think I will declare this my earworm today. After all, it comes with fun memories, which is more than I can say about anything that Rihanna has recorded.


  • As Cape Cod Turns

    I had to turn off my Human League on Pandora to listen to your song 🙂 (Love Pandora’s Madonna (Holiday) station) That is a funny memory! We had a radio station in HS and I remember winning something one day and thinking I was all that. Ahh, high school.

  • Ally Bean

    “Spies everywhere. Spies everywhere!”

    This is wonderful. If this post doesn’t get you a “Mom, you are soooo weird” from your boys, nothing will. Thanks for sharing it.

  • Abigail

    Ha, that is quite the song. I think a huge part of the value of music is the memories it holds, not so much the quality of the music itself.