Blast from the Past: This Week in Music History
Brought to you by Alexa West, cohost of ROANOKE Mondays 12am-2am
Over the past decades, with increases in communication and information technology, the world has become a much smaller place. Some say it started with the invention of satellites, cellular telephones, or email, but for us music history scholars, it all started with Wham! Yes, Wham!—the endeavor that made George Michael (pre-public bathroom arrests) and Andrew Ridgeley famous for wearing neon clothing and belting out tunes like “Wake Me up before You Go-Go.” On April 7th 1985, Wham! became the first western pop group to perform live in China, when they played at the workers gymnasium in Beijing. Today, groups travel all over the world to give tours, but when the world was more divided (especially in the 80s, at the end of the Cold War), touring internationally was a big deal. Wham’s tour opened up the world for American pop artists like Britney Spears and N*SYNC to tour internationally with no hesitation and increasing enthusiasm.