For a brief period in the ’80s, it was acceptable for a man to wear a headband and red leather pants. This was thanks to Loverboy, the Canadian hardish-rockish band led by the gruff-lunged Mike Reno, also known as the outfit that gave us such enduring Bud Light anthems as “Workin’ for the Weekend” and “Hot Girls in Love.”
You know what else Loverboy did? They helped pioneer the art of recording power ballads for soundtracks. In 1984, Reno met up with Ann Wilson of Heart at the musical crossroads of Foreigner and Anne Murray for the Footloose soundtrack cut “Almost Paradise” (download). The song was so tailor-made for slow dancing, you could almost hear chaperones clearing their throats over the drums, and it was an enormous hit.
Heart, it’s worth noting, would soon inflict a few power ballads of their own on fans â€” but that’s for another entry, and anyway, Reno and his fellow Loverboys weren’t done. They landed “Heaven in Your Eyes” (download) on the Top Gun soundtrack, thus extending their shelf life for another year. The most interesting thing about “Heaven” is its video, which blends the “let them eat crowd noise” philosophy with the “movie clips, we need movie clips” tactic for a perfect storm of ’80sness:
Say, have Mike Reno and Kelly Keagy ever been seen together in public? I have a theory: