The decade of the 1980s is especially known for an explosion of music genres and artists across the world. This sporadic mushrooming of the music industry was mainly due to the introduction of MTV (Music Television) in 1980. While the world was witnessing a revolution in music and art, the music of Pakistan changed. The 1980s saw several talents which lead the path of the future. These Pakistani artists were surely inspired by the waves of different genres of the time. It included the genres of Disco, Rock, and Heavy Metal as well as Pop. But we have to see which artists or themes in the era inspired the whole generation to break free from the past. But it was the concept of music videos that was the main catalyst for success.
Return of Pop with Disco
During the 80s, Pop music which was left behind in the 1970s came back with the help of Disco. This come back was due to artists such as Boney M, Abba, Madonna, and the king himself, Michael Jackson.
These artists and many one-hit wonders remained constant and their videos were shown on MTV regularly. Whereas, rock and heavy metal music was still a class of rebels. Bands such as Metallica were playing gigs to fill out arenas. But MTV had not heard of them.
Fanatic Rise of Heavy Metal Music
Thrash, from the US, and the NWOBHM (New wave of British heavy metal) were having cult followings. It was during this time that these heavy and extreme music genres developed a fanatic following.
But in the mainstream media, it was glam metal bands who reigned. These included acts such as Warrant, Motley Crue, Poison, and Def Leppard.
The entire decade would have been dedicated to the glam metal if it was not for Guns n Roses and Skid Row.
A late awakening in Pakistan
Although the Pakistani Pop and Rock industry had enjoyed success in the earlier decades of the 1960s and 1970s. But the 80s decade stalled that success. However, artists like Nazia and Zohaib did have some success in introducing Pakistan’s Urdu language version of Disco.
But by 1987 the regime’s policies softened and bands such as Vital Signs came out with the first hit single Dil Dil Pakistan.
In the same year, Karachi showcased an open-air concert that had a similar effect. It also featured the young rock bands of Pakistan like Barbarians and Final Cut.
The decade of 1980s was surely a new era for the music of Pakistan. It was a time when the beginnings of a golden age for music started. The pinnacle of success was to be seen in the next decade, which brought in more sounds and artists.