A story published in The New York Times declares that country music is “dead.” However, a number of new acts – Randy Travis and Dwight Yoakam among them – are working behind the scenes to change the trend.
The Country Music Association Awards introduced a new award, Music Video of the Year. The first recipient was Hank Williams Jr.’s video for “All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight.”
Living Colour guitarist Vernon Reid cofounds the Black Rock Coalition, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the creative freedom and works of black musicians interested in playing rock music.
Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider testifies at The Parents Music Resource Center Senate hearings on rock censorship at Washington D.C. on September 19, 1985.
David Lee Roth releases his solo debut (EP) Crazy from the Heat in January 1985. With it comes the announcement he has permanently left Van Halen.
Black Sabbath reunites at Live Aid with Ozzy Osbourne.
Led Zeppelin reunites at Live Aid with Phil Collins replacing deceased drummer John Bonham.
Kam Lee leaves Death and Chuck Schuldiner becomes the vocalist.
Uriah Heep’s former lead singer, David Byron dies on February 28, due to alcohol complications.
Welcome to Venice compilation is released, featuring Suicidal Tendencies, Beowulf, and others, showing the growing crossover trend among the Venice Beach hardcore and metal scenes.
Newly formed bands
David Lee Roth
Dream Theater (under the name “Majesty”)
Guns N’ Roses
Iced Earth (known as “Purgatory” until 1988)
Tarot (under the name “Purgatory” until record deal)