Flashback Video: 'Rock On' by Michael Damian

Ever since the dawn of MTV and Friday Night Videos, the music video has significantly impacted musical tastes and pop culture. It might not be as extreme as when the Buggles declared that "Video Killed the Radio Star", but there is no arguing that the music video certainly could make or break a song's popularity. So this regular Flashback Video feature will serve to remember some of the music videos from the great '80s decade that made an impact on me in one way or another. This issue we will cover "Rock On" by Michael Damian. “Rock On” was a cover of the 1973 David Essex song and was featured on the soundtrack for the film Dream a Little Dream. It was released as a single at the same time as the film was released in theaters in March of 1989. "Rock On" received heavy radio airplay that spring and summer and it would hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in June. The music video also quickly became a MTV staple. The video features Damian performing the song in concert mixed with clips from the Dream a Little Dream film. In addition to the film footage, the three young stars of the film, Corey Haim, Corey Feldman and Meredith Salenger all appear in video and on-stage with Damian. Here is the music video for “Rock On” by Michael Damian…



It is reported that Damian had grown up listening to "Rock On" and loved the song, so in 1988 he recorded a version with his brothers, Tom and Larry, in his home studio. CBS wasn't interested, but as fate would have it, Tom and Larry ended up working on music for Dream A Little Dream. They played their brother's version of "Rock On" for the director, Mark Rocco, who loved it an put it in the film. Between the exposure in the movie and the exposure on MTV, he had a #1 hit on his hands.


In case you didn't know, Michael Damian is best known for his role as “Danny Romalotti” on the soap opera The Young and the Restless from 1980 to 1998 (and then again from 2003 to 2013), though he also had a few other minor hit songs. Not coincidentally, his character on the soap opera was also a rock star. Damian has a couple other '80s connections including recording an early version of the theme song for the television series Saved By the Bell and also having a recurring role for two seasons on the television series The Facts of Life. I wasn't a soap opera fan, so I will always remember him for "Rock On". Hope you enjoyed another trip back to the '80s thanks to Flashback Video!

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