DJ Badger:  The News and the Journal

Entry One Hundred Seventy.
Tuesday, 2013.07.09, 3:42 AM CST.

"Music for the Night People" and "What Do Boys Dream?"
Current Mood:  Tired.
Current Scent:  The remaining traces of Homme de Cafe by Cofci.

This isn't a post about DJing.

Sometimes I feel like a man made of memories, nothing more.

Back when I was much younger - in 1984 or 1985, a few years before I entered the world of DJing - I discovered a syndicated television program called Odyssey which came on late at night.  In Tulsa, I believe that it kicked off at 11:00 PM or midnight, and it continued through the early morning hours.  If I'm not mistaken, Odyssey was broadcast on UHF channel 41 here (possibly 23).  The one thing I definitely remember was the deep male voice charmingly uttering the slogan "Music for the Night People" as they came out of breaks.

Although I would have been around 13 years old at the time, I can still remember seeing Odyssey on occasion on weeknights, when I was finishing homework after a long night of procrastination or, in one particular instance, after coming home from the Tulsa State Fair with my parents.  Oh, how I miss those old days.

If memory serves - and in this case I'm pretty sure it does - Odyssey gave me my first taste of Depeche Mode, with the video for their 1984 single"People Are People."  I heard that song there a few times, then didn't hear anything from DM until late 1987 on "New Grooves with Meg Griffin."  That's a story for another time, and in fact, a story I've told before on this site, probably numerous times.  (In earlier versions of the story, I may have mentioned that I first saw DM on the USA Network's "Night Flight."  I have since remembered that it was much, much more likely on Odyssey.)

This isn't a post about Depeche Mode.

You see, Odyssey also presented me with some much more obscure artists... artists whose work made an impression with only one viewing of one video, but whose names escaped me for over a decade, until resources on the almighty Internet solved those mysteries back in the mid-to-late 1990s.


Two tracks aside from "People Are People" especially haunted me from back then:  "Mona with the Children," a beautiful 1985 song (with a horribly sad backstory and music video) by Canadian musician Doug Cameron, and a little-known song by Joan Armatrading called "What Do Boys Dream?"

Cover of Joan Armatrading's album "The Key"I would be absolutely shocked if my wife or any of my friends knew the Armatrading song.  By "any of my friends," I mean ANY of my friends, anywhere.  Joan Armatrading isn't a well-known musician to start with, but "What Do Boys Dream?" is even more obscure than she is.

In fact, the fact that it was even shown on Odyssey still boggles my mind.  Even though I'm almost 100% positive I saw the video on Odyssey in 1985 (reinforced by the fact that I saw it around the same time as "Mona with the Children," a 1985 single), the song "What Do Boys Dream?" was released on Armatrading's 1983 album, "The Key."

Also, there was no reason for it to have a video at all.  Why?  Because it was never released as a single.  I have searched Discogs and cannot find any instance of a "What Do Boys Dream?" single.  No commercial releases, no promo releases.

Thus, I have no idea why a video was made... nor why it was played in 1985 so that I could see it on Odyssey.

But it was, and it was, and I did.


For years, I have intended on buying one of Armatrading's CDs to obtain the song.  Tonight, for reasons of which I'm not completely sure, I started thinking intensely about the song and I finally snapped.  I made the rare decision to use 99 cents of Amazon credit and buy an MP3 (I usually buy physical media instead of MP3s) and snagged the track on my cell phone just as I was leaving am especially late night at my "day job" at 1:00 AM.

I then played that track, on repeat, from my cell phone, my entire way home.


If you have three spare minutes, please watch and listen.  If you've ever wondered what kind of a song can haunt me for almost three decades... now's your chance to listen to it.  As of the time of this writing, a low-quality version of the video is on YouTube, allegedly uploaded by Ms. Armatrading herself.



I miss my past.

I miss my youth.

I miss my childhood dreams.

I miss the mysteries of the "Music for the Night People."

Good night, everyone... and thank you.