Had a Dream: Roger Hodgson’s Post-Breakfast Dalliance with the Enemy

When Roger Hodgson left Supertramp in 1983 few people had any pretensions about him ever replicating the massive success of 1979’s Breakfast in America, the group’s multi-platinum album that practically redefined an entire generation’s attitude towards the quintessential morning meal (according to a 2011 interview with Time Out Beirut, Hodgson’s preferred breakfast of choice is eggs benedict). But given Hodgson’s penchant for hit-making, as indicated by Supertramp smashes “Give a Little Bit”, “The Logical Song”, and “Take the Long Way Home”, he had every reason to think charting his own course was a wise investment. Released in 1984, the rock solid In the Eye of the Storm cemented Hodgson as a solo artist, with the former Supertramp co-frontman tackling most of the instrumentation himself. The album’s first single, “Had a Dream (Sleeping with the Enemy)”, is a delightfully rollicking folk rocker that plays with Hodgson’s Cold War cynicism and doubts about his own and humanity’s future. The video for “Had a Dream (Sleeping with the Enemy)” opens with a riff on the Star Child concept from Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey and features a screaming Hodgson being struck by lightning in his space womb. What a trip! And there’s certainly an aura of rebirth to the proceedings that’s befitting of his newly-minted status as a solo artist. Plus, you’ve got the impressively taut Hodgson running around in a loincloth to keep your blood flowing, as well as him wearing all sorts of funky makeup, not to mention the foreboding storm that serves as the video’s all-encompassing backdrop. With all that cocaine and Reaganomics running amok, it’s easy to forget that the ‘80s still held enticing possibilities for artistic experimentation and creative renewal, both of which helped grant Hodgson a new lease on life after over a decade in Supertramp. He had a dream and saw it through. We should all be so lucky!  

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