Last night’s American Idol opened with footage of judge Randy Jackson rocking out with Journey in their Miami Vice-inspired colored-sport-coat, mid-’80s era. It’s caused a bit of a stir online this morning as people – no doubt hypnotized by Jackson’s high-top fade and tight, tapered pants – rush to YouTube to gobble up more videos of him a-boppin’ and a-dancin’ while playing bass on stage alongside Steve Perry. Is there anything more unfortunately styled than a pop musician from the mid to late ’80s? And yet I’m sure Jackson’s proud of the footage – and he should be. The Idol judges are all “experts” in music, but I’m far more impressed by Jackson’s stint as a studio musician in an arena rock band (he joined Journey in 1986 for their album Raised on Radio and the subsequent tour) than I am by Simon Cowell describing Il Divo as “the best thing I ever heard” or Paula Abdul dancing with an animated wolf (or was that a cat?) in the “Opposites Attract” video. So rock on, Randy. Even if you do look like the lost member of Kid ‘N Play, ask the haters how many of them played “Don’t Stop Believin’ ” in front of 30,000 screaming fans.
Who else has love for the Big Dawg, even if he does desperately need to step up his Idol commentary? Anyone wanna predict a high-top fade comeback? And how long you think it took him to squeeze into these pants?