Remembering a landmark year for arena rock

Remembering a landmark year for arena rock 

Posted: 1:36 pm Tuesday, September 13th, 2016

By Pete Rizzo


Rock is known for landmark years where the industry is turned on its head by some great music. The first year I thought of, incidentally, is a genre I wasn’t the greatest fan of (grunge) thanks to Nirvana and Pearl Jam in 1991. Another one I totally forgot about was 10 years prior.

1981 was a most excellent year for arena rock, AOR, corporate rock. Whatever you choose to deem the genre, four terrific albums came out that year, as detailed in this interview with REO Speedwagon frontman Kevin Cronin.

My lasting memories as an eight year old were using my older sister’s blaster radio (which was accustomed to disco and R&B sounds coming out of it) when she wasn’t around and listening to staples from these four bands on the radio. Among them,…

As for my favorite of this esteemed bunch, I have to go with Journey’s “Escape”.

What’s your pick among this AOR master quartet?