An Artist, A Pioneer

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Not everyone gets to hear Casey call their name on American Top 40. Those songs make up The Other Sixty. Let’s review the debuts that didn’t make it from the fourth chart week of January 1980 to 1983.

January 26th, 1980

86. Patrice Rushen – Haven’t You Heard?

Babyfingers crosses over to the Pop charts with her first entry, a jazzy disco number from her fifth album, Pizazz. It will reach the Top 10 on the Soul charts, but barely miss the Top 40 stopping at #42 while dreck like Wayne Newton’s Years got in. It will show up again as a sample in Zhane’s Top 20 hit from 1994, Groove Thang.

Fun fact: Patrice was the musical director of the Grammy Awards from 2004 to 2006.

88. Turley Richards – You Might Need Somebody 

Turley was celebrating his fourth decade of recording when he released this single, a career that was started singing rockabilly and had now moved into the WestCoast pop arena. He had lots of help from Fleetwood Mac members on his album Therfu, including drums by Mick Fleetwood and bass from Bob Welch. This will be his final Hot 100 entry when this #54 peaker slips off the charts. The song written by Tom Snow and Nan O’Byrne would have success a few times on the UK charts, first by Randy Crawford in 1981 [#11] and then, Shola Ama in 1997 [#4]

January 31st, 1981

83. The Association – Dreamer

This LA sextet famous for CherishWindy, and Along Comes Mary got a jump on 80s nostalgia by reforming with five of the original six members and recording a new single. This sleepy ballad didn’t have the same magic as those previous 60s smashes and will fall asleep at #66 while becoming a Top 20 AC hit.

85. Lakeside – Fantastic Voyage

Amazingly, a song this well-known did not make the Top 40 back in the day. Coming out of the Ohio funk scene of the 70s, they broke through with their fourth album and this monster jam, which went straight to the top of the Soul charts. It will be their only Hot 100 entry, and even though the single went Gold, the rise will stop at #55. Coolio will sample it record a hip hop remake of it in 1994 and take it to #3 Pop, #10 Soul.

92. Touch – Don’t You Know What Love Is?

In the 70s, there was a rock quartet from NY called American Tears. They released three albums on the Columbia label to very little fanfare. When they contract dissolved, three of them formed a new band called Touch. They had a tiny bit more luck as this single charted on the Hot 100 and made it up to #69. They were invited to play the Monsters of Rock festival at Castle Donnigan. Unfortunately, their second album went unreleased until 1998.

Fun fact: Singer Mark Mangold hooked up with an unknown songwriter named Michael Bolotin. Together they would write a song called I Found Someone, which Cher had a hit with it in 1988.

January 30th, 1982

83. Sammy Hagar – I’ll Fall In Love Again

Sammy had released six albums since leaving Montrose in the mid-70s. He had yet to grab a Top 40 hit, but he was getting closer. This one from Standing Hampton will get up to #43. It’s about as exciting as you would expect Mr. Cabo Wabo to be.

85. Conductor – Voice On The Radio

Here’s a band that was going after some of that Quaterflash cash. From a five-song EP comes this single written by Franne Golde & Peter McIan, a pretty good slice of forgotten pop. This DJ homage will hit static at #63.

88. Anne Murray – Another Sleepless Night

Anne was still having hits on the Country charts during the 80s, while pop radio decided not to return her calls. Thus this tender ballad will hit #4 down Nashville way but top out at #44 Pop.

94. The Time – Cool

Imagine being so gifted that you can write and record a career-defining double album like 1999 and still have an album full of funk jams to give away to some friends. Then, my friends, you would be Prince. But we know you’re not, cause there was no like him. Prince’s childhood friend, Morris Day and his band, The Time [amazing musicians themselves] crossed over to the Hot 100 with this white-hot 45, edited down from ten minutes to three. It only reached #90 while making the Soul Top 10, but damn, this stuff was too good for pop radio.

96. T.G. Sheppard – Only One You

After bragging about loving ’em all in 1981, TG decided to take it back and only love one woman. Bragging about being a lothario and then promising monogamy, these fake ass Country singers are perfect for an industry that marginalizes women. We all told TG to fuck off, to the tune of a #68 peak. Of course, it was his ninth Country #1.

January 29th, 1983

81. Chicago – What You’re Missing

With David Foster on board, he transformed the former horn rock powerhouse into a soft rock pop machine. When he tried to get them to rock out, it was with fairly comical results such as on this track from 16. Guess we thought so too, as this single would not climb any higher than its debut.

84. Neil Young – Little Thing Called Love

God bless Neil Young. He keeps on making music for himself and lets the people come to him. His experimentation with electronic sounds on Trans pissed off some of his hippie legions but screw them. Neil’s not here to make you happy. He’s not here to make himself happy. Somehow this track reached #71, and it became his last Hot 100 entry.

86. Donald Fagen – New Frontier

The man. This song holds a special place in my heart for many reasons. One, I watched this video tons of times, the pink and blue hues filling me with an undeserved nostalgia. It ended up becoming my back door entry into the world of Steely Dan. I was lucky enough to see them perform this live in 2013 to a confused crowd, though I was overjoyed. Second, I used this song to rock my daughter to sleep when she was one. I would sit her up on my knee and rest her body against mine, play this song, and tp my leg to the beat. She’d be out before the Rhodes and cowbell breakdown. This will be leapfrogged by Journey & Styx and never make it past #70.

89. Crosby, Stills & Nash – Too Much Love To Hide

Neil is up at #84, while the other three are here at #89. From the Daylight Again LP, here’s one of the few tracks to actually feature David Crosby. [No, he’s not singing on Southern Cross or Wasted On The Way.] Unlike the first two singles, this will not make the Top 40 stalling out at Bill & Ted’s favorite number.

 

 

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