The Weeknd revealed how “Grand Theft Auto: Vice City” opened his eyes to the 1980’s song vibe. The Canadian singer under the real name Abel Tesfaye said that Rockstart’s video game brought a lot of nostalgia when he was a kid.

The Weeknd Spoke About ‘GTA: Vice City’s Influence on His Music 

the weeknd, grand theft auto, gta vice city, 80's music

(Photo : MARTIN BUREAU/AFP via Getty Images)
Canadian singer/songwriter The Abel Tesfaye a.k.a The Weeknd performs during the 2016 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show at the Grand Palais in Paris on November 30, 2016.

The “Star Boy” artist has been popular for his electro-hip-hop songs, which made the world dance and instilled important messages to his listeners. 

The Weeknd’s synth-heavy album “After Hours,” which was released in March 2020, borrowed a significant style from the 1980’s songs. At the time of its popularity, the 31-year-old artist managed to enter the US Billboard Hot 100 Songs of All Time following the success of his second single, “Blinding Lights.”

In an interview with Billboard with track co-writer Max Martin, The Weeknd unveiled how they created a history behind the said album. According to Martin, the contemporary music singer has tried a different vibe for his songs envisioned for the whole track.

Martin praised how The Weeknd took a risky move to get out of his comfort zone. In the end, the outcome became special not only to the whole team but also to the fans.

During that time, The Weeknd said that the “Grand Theft Auto: Vice City” has exposed him to the touch of the ’80s music. Moreover, he explained that the “GTA” game brought some nostalgic memories of him when he was playing video games. He used to listen to Michael Jackson and Hall & Oates as he drove around the [GTA] Vice City.

According to Martin, Abel visualized the “computer-animated car” roaming around the futuristic city, per NME’s report. This was seen to be an inspiration for the studio wall of his songs. To add, the “GTA” vibe is what Abel wanted to happen when he came in.

Tesfaye said that he always loves to explore the sounds of the ’80s, but there’s a more subtle explanation for that. He told the outlet that he likes to see what’s inside it entirely. Years later, he thought that he had earned what he wanted to do.

“GTA: Vice City” took its inspiration from the 1986 era. The fictional place resembles the city of Miami. This adventure game features soundtracks that fans love to play while strolling the whole city.

Missing Songs From ‘GTA: Trilogy – The Definitive Edition’

the weeknd, grand theft auto, gta vice city, 80's music

(Photo : Mario Tama/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY – SEPTEMBER 18: A poster promoting Grand Theft Auto V is attached to a wall at the 8 Bit & Up video games shop in Manhattan’s East Village on September 18, 2013 in New York City. The video game raked in more than $800 million in sales in its first 24 hours on the shelves.

In another report by Gamerant, several tracks have been removed from the next-gen “Grand Theft Auto” triad game. 

Here’s a list of the radio station songs that fans wanted to return from the “GTA: Vice City” series:

  • Billie Jean by Michael Jackson
  • Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin by Michael Jackson
  • Bark at the Moon by Ozzy Osbourne
  • The Smurf by Tyrone Brunson
  • Looking for the Perfect Beat by Afrika Bambaataa and the Soulsonic Force
  • Wow by Kate Bush
  • Rockit by Herbie Hancock
  • Añunga Ñunga by Irakere

Removed Songs From ‘GTA: San Andreas:’

  • Runnin’ Down a Dream by Tom Petty
  • Running Away by Roy Ayers
  • Hellraiser by Ozzy Osbourne
  • Woman to Woman by Joe Cocker 
  • Killing in the Name by Rage Against the Machine
  • Hellraiser by Ozzy Osbourne
  • Express Yourself by N.W.A.
  • The Payback by James Brown 
  • You Dropped a Bomb on Me by Gap Band
  • The Grunt by The JB’s
  • Funky President (People It’s Bad) by James Brown
  • I Don’t Give a Fuck by 2Pac ft. Pogo
  • Ring My Bell by Blood Sisters 
  • Rock Creek Park by The Blackbyrds
  • Don’t Let It Go to Your Head by Black Harmony
  • Yum Yum (Gimme Some) by Fatback Band
  • Express Yourself by Charles Wright & the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band 

Elsewhere, Rockstar Games pulled “GTA Trilogy’ on PC earlier this month. The developer said that it launched the maintenance for the game following some issues. At the time of writing, another report said that someone has datamined uncompiled scripts and tracks of the game.

Written by Joseph Henry 

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