80's Bands and Artists



 

Wang Chung

Wang Chung


Wang Chung are a British New Wave musical group.

The group found their greatest success in the United States with five Top 40 hits including the 1986 #2 hit "Everybody Have Fun Tonight" and their only UK hit, "Dance Hall Days".

Altogether they put out 5 albums in the 80's. Self-titled album "Huang Chung" (1982) (before they changed to Wang Chung), "Points On A Curve" (1984), the soundtrack to "To Live And Die In L.A." (1985), "Mosaic" (1986), and 'The Warmer Side Of Cool" (1989).

Originally called Huang Chung the band formed in 1979. The lineup consisted of vocalist/guitarist Jack Hues, bassist Nick Feldman, and drummer Darren Costin. Hues originally met Feldman after answering Feldman's ad for a musician in the classifieds section of the weekly British music magazine Melody Maker in 1977.

Soon afterwards, Hues and Feldman formed with Bud Merrick and the late Paul Hammond in late 1977/early 1978 as 'The Intellektuals'. In less than a year, the band split up, as Hues and Feldman joined up with future Wang Chung drummer Darren Costin, along with keyboardists Simon Campbell, Leigh Gorman and Glenn Gregory, to form '57 Men'. This lineup lasted for less than a year as well.

Huang Chung's self-titled debut album was released by Arista Records in 1982 after several singles, including the minor post-punk hit "Isn't It About Time We Were on TV". In 1983, after being dropped by Arista and signed to Geffen Records, they changed their name to Wang Chung (at Geffen's suggestion, to make pronunciation easier for English-speakers—consistent with the claim by VH1's Pop Up Video that they changed it because people kept calling them "Hung Chung") — and subsequently they released Points on the Curve, which yielded two major hits, "Don't Let Go" (#36 US) and "Dance Hall Days" (#16 US).

Soundtracks

Director William Friedkin specifically sought out Wang Chung to score his 1985 film To Live and Die in L.A. The resulting soundtrack is recognizable as their work, but largely eschews conventional pop song formulae for a more atmospheric and textured approach. The band also recorded "Fire in the Twilight" for the 1985 John Hughes film The Breakfast Club — it is used in the scene where the kids are led by John Bender down the halls trying to escape Mr. Vernon.

Commercial peak (1986 - 1989)

In the summer of 1985, Costin left the band while Hues and Feldman continued to record and employed Peter Wolf as their new drummer but never became an official member of the band. The same year, they had their biggest hits: "Everybody Have Fun Tonight" (#2 US, featuring the oft-quoted lyric "Everybody Wang Chung tonight", and rated the third worst song ever by Blender magazine) and "Let's Go" (#9 US), both from the album Mosaic. "Everybody Have Fun Tonight" also has a well-remembered music video (directed by Godley & Creme) where virtually every frame featured a jump cut.

They released their final album, The Warmer Side of Cool, in 1989, and disbanded in 1991.

Post-breakup (1990s)

During the 1990s, Feldman joined up with Jon Moss of Culture Club to form the band Promised Land, and subsequently released their self-titled debut album, Promised Land, in 1992. Hues has done various soundtracks for films including The Guardian. He had a solo album, The Anatomy Lesson, in the making, but this didn't see any light until he teamed up with Tony Banks of Genesis and released the album Strictly Inc.

The late 1990s saw the return of Hues and Feldman with a greatest hits collection entitled Everybody Wang Chung Tonight: Wang Chung's Greatest Hits. Included on this CD was a new single, "Space Junk". Feldman and Hues also enjoyed a series of tour dates around America.

In 2002, the band's song "Dance Hall Days" was used in the video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City on Flash FM as well as in the pre-mission cameo when Lance Vance is waiting for Tommy on a dock before raiding a crack house on Prawn Island. In 2006, their song "Don't Let Go" was used in Vice City's prequel, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, again on Flash FM.

 

Wikipedia contributors. Wang Chung (band). Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. July 28, 2008, 03:56 UTC. Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wang_Chung_%28band%29&oldid=228319329. Accessed August 3, 2008.