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Billy Idol

Billy Idol

When his punk band, Generation X, broke up in 1981, oft-sneering singer Billy Idol moved to New York City and made the transformation from scrawny punk-rocker to slightly less scrawny new-waver. Released in 1981, his first solo-career EP, Don't Stop (Number 74, 1983), contained two hits, though it would take some time for either of them to pay off: His cover of Tommy James and The Shondells' "Mony Mony" (Number One) would finally chart in the form of a liver version in 1987, while a remake of Generation X's ode to onanism, "Dancing With Myself," wouldn't take off until 1983, when MTV placed its Mad Max-style video in heavy rotation.

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Photo by Chapman Baehler

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