Let Me Take You To The Max


I must have been listening to the radio a lot and watching MTV like a fiend in late 83. Just about all of these songs are in the soundtrack to my life, especially Say Say Say. That’s the I equate with having my first girlfriend, Melissa. It was the first song we danced to when we met at a Halloween dance. I use dance very loosely. Before I knew it, we started dating, sending letters to each other, talking on the phone as we both watched videos together. There has never been a time in my life that I heard Say x 3 and not felt again the first flush of innocent romance.

So here are the Top 20 songs from November 26th, 1983.

20. Air Supply – Making Love Out Of Nothing At All

PD – For a group that sang Lost In Love, All Out of Love, and The One That You Love, they truly made love out of nothing at all.

19. Peabo Bryson & Roberta Flack – Tonight, I Celebrate My Love

PD – Our second duet on the countdown features the first appearance by the pride of Greenville, SC, Mr. Peabo Bryson. The celebration seems to be wrapping up as they begin their fall down that charts.

18. Prince – Delirious

The most popular Prince that you don’t remember. But this former #8, buoyed by the strength of his 1999 LP, was also used to promote the 1991 John Candy film of the same name. Forgot about that one too?

17. Sheena Easton – Telefone (Long Distance Love Affair)

PD – Sheena’s phone gets disconnected, and Ma Bell is reaching out to touch her by kicking her down the charts after a brief visit in the Top 10.

16. Irene Cara – Why Me?

Irene had six Top 40 hits, four of them were from Movies. So just as we call out Kenny Loggins for his movie songs (or not), we should do the same for Irene. For this was a rare non-soundtrack single for her, which is probably why you don’t remember it.

15. The Fixx – One Thing Leads To Another

PD – Man, does this song resonate in 2019? This is the Fixx’s biggest hit falling from its zenith of #4.

14. Duran Duran – Union Of The Snake

My parents were hosting a holiday party around this time and they were wondering why a couple they invited hadn’t shown up. So they called them and found out that they’re babysitter bailed on them. Guess who got volunteered to do the job? So I was dropped off at this couple’s house while they went over to mine to get tanked up. I don’t remember them giving me any instruction for watching their young daughters, bedtimes, dinner…nothing. All I remember was that the two of them played this 45 in their bedroom as loud as they could over and over while I tried to watch Porky’s in the other room.

13. The Motels – Suddenly Last Summer

RAR – Not all songs have to be lyrically deep and musical complex to be considered excellent. Sometimes it’s just about capturing a vibe. And that’s what Martha Davis & the Motels do on this ode to holding on to the past. Also, the video is creepy as hell and features Lewis Skolnick gettin’ freaky.

12. Bonnie Tyler – Total Eclipse Of The Heart

PD – OK, so then what is going across Bonnie’s heart to block it? Does Jim Steinman understand what an eclipse is? Is he saying that Bonnie’s heart goes black? Or does everything get eerily quiet and peaceful? From the volume of this former #1, I doubt it. I’m sure this song made Meat Loaf try to heal his throat and get sober as quick as he could.

11. Culture Club – Church Of The Poison Mind

Here is another artist that was taking over 1983. Boy George and pals are a notch away from having their fourth Top 10 this year with a Motown-influenced stomper about close-minded idiots.

10. Michael Jackson – P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)

MJ has two songs in the Top 10, a year after Thriller was released. That’s how 1983 went for him. This is the first time that the term tenderoni was used in a mainstream song. [The earliest use I could find in a song was on the O’Jays 1975 album cut, She’s Only A Woman.] Of course, MJ protege, Bobby Brown had a Top 10 hit in 1989 with Roni. Van Camp has yet to get a royalty check.

The video for Thriller would be first shown on MTV one week after this countdown.

9. John Cougar Mellencamp – Crumblin’ Down

JC wrote the pop songs that Bruce couldn’t until Bruce finally did. JC knew that day was coming and started his long name change process. This Top 10 was his first release as JCM before one day becoming JM.

8. Huey Lewis & The News – Heart And Soul

Here’s a ChinniChap tune that was first recorded by Exile back in 1981, then the Bus Boys in 1982, before Huey and the gang recorded it for their Sports LP. It became the first of many hits for them from that LP and sits at its final resting place this week.

7. Daryl Hall & John Oates – Say It Isn’t So

The first single from the Hall & Oates compilation, Rock N Soul, Vol. 1, is the ninth Top 10 single for the duo so far in the 80s. It will climb to #2, kept down by a truckful of Mac & Jack’s Wonder Potion. Also, nice shoes.

6. Pat Benatar – Love Is A Battlefield

Pat tacked an extra song onto her Live From Earth LP and ended up with a #5 hit. Written by Holly Knight & Mike Chapman, it is the closest she ever came to being a dance artist. Also, Mr. Mackey likes to sing it when he gets wasted.

And the video features Nathan Huffhines Arizona.

5. Quiet Riot – Cum On Feel The Noize

THW, PFK – Top five are in the same position as last week, which means these whispering troublemakers won’t climb any higher than their #5 position. It’s funny to think people called this heavy metal when it was just a Slave Slade cover taken seriously by some L.A. guys.

4. Kenny Rogers & Dolly Parton – Islands In The Stream

PD – Note to Kenny – if you go out looking for Dolly Parton, you don’t need a comb to find her, let alone a fine-tooth one. You’re only gonna get it caught in her wig.

3. Billy Joel – Uptown Girl

When Billy met Christie, he began to de-sour and sweeten, which is why you had tracks like this on An Innocent Man. It would have gone to #1 had it not been for the two=headed buzzsaw ahead of it. Also, Frankie Valli would like his royalty check, please.

2. Paul McCartney & Michael Jackson – Say, Say, Say

This is going to be #1 in two weeks and stay up there for six more. This is MJ’s seventh Top single in 1983. The recording for the song began before the Thriller sessions and was finished up while Mac & Jack’s first duet peaked at #2 earlier this year. It was held up for the release of the patchwork Tug Of War LP and probably as not to compete with MJ’s juggernaut. By the way, if you’ve never heard the song with some of the leads reversed, here it is.

ML –

1. Lionel Richie –All Night Long (All Night) (3 wks at #1)

Fiesta forever! This is about as funky as Lionel ever got post-Commodores, so enjoy it. And if you hear someone label this as yacht rock, please throw a wine cooler at them.

Fun fact: The video was directed by Bob Rafelson, the man who also directed the Jack Nicholson films, Five Easy Pieces & The Postman Always Rings Twice.


  • OHW – One-Hit-Wonder
  • THW – Two-Hit-Wonder
  • ML – Misheard Lyrics
  • PD – Previously Discussed
  • PFK – Perfect for Karaoke
  • RAR – Rite-Aid Rock
  • SXMFU – A Sirius XM mistake
  • STA – Second Time Around

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