Your Dreams Are Washed Away

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Who knows why one song becomes a hit, and another languishes at the bottom? It’s the eternal question with no answer. All of this is luck and money anyway. I’m just counting up the bodies.

I actually find most of this group of The Other Sixty from the seventeenth chart week in 1984/85 musically interesting and somewhat aesthetically pleasing. Let’s review.

April 28th, 1984

70. Dan Fogelberg – Believe In Me

That Dan scored a Top 20 hit in 1984 is a testament to his songwriting talents. That he released this twee classical ballad as a follow-up shows that he was entirely out of touch with current music. And longer than the time you could count fishes in the ocean, Dan never had a Top 40 again. This was the closest he came when it reached #48.

73. Queen – I Want To Break Free

Here’s another artist that was unfairly kept off of Casey’s radar for the rest of the decade. What the hell was wrong with this song? It didn’t help that MTV banned this video, for doing something that Milton Berle did for years (including the video for Ratt’s Round And Round) This song was a hit everywhere around the world except for the homophobic States where it peaked at #45. In 2019, Queen would be one of the biggest selling artists in the world.

81. Dennis Edwards featuring Siedah Garrett – Don’t Look Any Further

Dennis had enough of the Temptations drama and started his solo career in earnest. After all, he wasn’t in the Dramatics, am I right? He started strong with this midtempo jam that straddled the line between a house party and a quiet storm. This would reach #2 on the Soul charts but only #72  on the Hot 100. It would be sampled many times, most famously in Eric B. & Rakim’s Paid In Full and would be covered by the Kane Gang in 1988 as their entry into The Other Sixty sweepstakes.

86. Kenny Rogers – Eyes That See In The Dark

The Brothers Gibb kept Kenny rolling on the Pop charts in late 1983/ early 1984 with their latest songwriting and production project. Their third single was the title track from Kenny’s album, becoming a big AC hit, reaching the Country Top 40, but losing their night vision at #72 on the Pop charts. It’s one of my favorite Gibb songs and was happy to finally hear Barry’s demo a few years ago.

87. INXS – Original Sin

After scoring a Top 40 hit in 1983, the band called in producer Nile Rodgers to spread his magic on a song the Aussies thought would be their big US hit. And while it’s an awesome song, it would get to #58 Stateside. But Nile’s influence was evident on their breakthrough album, Kick. It’s not a long evolution from this single to Need You Tonight. In fact, I’m pretty sure it’s the same guitar part, only inverted.

90. Poco – Days Gone By

So many folks have played with Poco and have gone on to have bigger careers, it would be forgivable to not know who was in the 80s version. Rusty Young is the one member who has been there since 1968 and never left. For their 1984 album, Inamorata, Paul Cotton was still hanging around. And just to confuse you, Timothy B Schmit and Richie Furay did guest spots as well. All of this hype translated into a #80 zenith and subsequent five-year hiatus.

Fun fact: The album cover was designed by future SNL castmember Phil Hartman.

95. Luther Vandross – Superstar/Until You Come Back To Me (Medley)

Luther serenades the ladies and the fellas too with this languishingly soulful nine-minute medley of a #2 Carpenters smash from 1971 and #3 hit for Aretha in 1974. Technically he was doing songs written by Leon Russell, Bonnie Bramlett, and Stevie Wonder. While it was another Top 10 Soul hit for Luther, white folks slept on it, and it only moved up eight more spots.

April 27th, 1985

81. Peter Wolf – Oo-Ee-Diddley-Bop!

I love Peter Wolf, and I wish he left the J. Geils Band sooner. Maybe he promised them a monster hit, and once that came to pass, he felt OK about saying goodbye. A song like this is never gonna work at Pop radio, though. It’s too much fun. It was the third single from his debut and would only hit #61. The video is a hoot to watch if only to see Peter as a quick-talking DJ and his enthusiastic spastic dancing. It’s as if someone told him to walk barefoot over hot coals and then dropped two live lobsters in his pants.

83. Teena Marie – Jammin’

Lady T finally had her big crossover hit with Lovergirl, and then that was it. I think it was too much for folks hearing a 5 ft woman throw down the funk like that because this single should have easily followed the first into the Top 40. Instead, this irresistible groove will only move up two more notches before splitting.

84. Chaka Khan – Through The Fire

CK had her biggest Pop hit, I Feel For You at the end of 1984. For her third single from that album, she pulls out one of her smoothest ballads written by David Foster, specifically for her. It became a Top 20 R&B and AC hit but only burned up to #60 on the Pop charts. You may know the song via Kayne, who sped up the chorus and used it for his 2003 track, Through the Wire.

85. Freddie Mercury – I Was Born To Love You

According to the film, Bohemian Rhapsody, Freddie blew the band apart by signing a monster solo deal. In reality, FM was the third Queen member to do a solo project. And he did it without leaving the band or having the band break up. In fact, as he released this single, the band was in the middle of their The Works tour. And as far as I now never played any of these songs live with the group. The first single from his debut, Mr. Bad Guy, will fizzle out at #76.

Fun fact: Queen remade this song in the mid-90s, and their version became a #1 hit in Japan in 2004.

86. Melissa Manchester – Mathematics

This is a nice dose of alliteration, but you’re not gonna have a hit about one of the most boring school subjects. But putting a plus sign where the t would normally go is a nice touch. M2 co-wrote this proto-aerobics song with Brock “Automatic” Walsh and Robbie “C’est La Vie” Nevil, but it wouldn’t add up to anything more than a #74 finish.

90. The Alan Parsons Project – Days Are Numbers (The Traveller)

Here’s the second single from the 1984 Vulture Culture album. It didn’t have much more success than the first single. This one features lead vocals by singer Chris Rainbow who would usually get a least one track to sing on an APP LP ever since 1979’s Eve. The days and numbers end at #71.

 

Someone Who Doesn’t Follow All The Rules

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Let’s review the musical bouillabaisse called The Other Sixty for seventeenth chart week from 1980 up to 1983.

April 26th, 1980

80. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers – Here Comes My Girl

When Tom damned the torpedoes at the end of 1979, he signaled a change as one of the leaders in 80s rock. Straddling the line between heartland honesty, swampy soul, and punk attitude, he clobbered the charts with one hit after another. But even though this remains a popular tune in his catalog, it only made it to 59.

85. Humble Pie – Fool For a Pretty Face (Hurt By Love)

In the late 70s, Steve Marriott decided to get Humble Pie back together, because of or despite the success of their former guitarist Peter Frampton. You’d have to look at the record sleeve to see who this is because on first listen it could be Bad Company or Nazareth. Or whoever else sounds like them. The confusion may have helped it rise to #52.

88. Lou Rawls – You’re My Blessing

Supper club soul was on its way out in the early 80s, perhaps its demise was accelerated due to the 1977 Beverly Hills Supper Club fire in Kentucky, outside of Cincinnati. At least he had the Parade of Stars Telethon to keep him busy throughout the decade. This one will bow out after reaching #77.

Fun fact: Lou’s 1971 Top 20 hit A Natural Man was written by Bobby “Sunny” Hebb and comedian Sandy “Jack Klompus” Baron

89. Marshall Tucker Band – It Takes Time

The last chart hit from the pride of Spartanburg, South Carolina, was from their tenth album, Tenth. This was also the last album to feature original member and bass player Tommy Caldwell, who was killed in a car crash the same week this song debuted. It was one month after Tommy’s and Toy’s brother Tim was killed in an accident as well. They would write Ride In Peace to both of them of their next album, Dedicated. Personally, I’d rather hear this than Can’t You See for the millionth time. Time will run out after it hits #79.

98. Ironhorse – What’s Your Hurry Darlin’?

Randy Bachman decided to follow-up on the success of the first Ironhorse album in 1979 with another one the following year. He co-wrote this song with Carl Wilson, so if you ever wondered what BTO mixed with the Beach Boys would sound like, here’s your answer. This one will come to a halt at #89.

May 2nd, 1981

89. The Jacksons – Can You Feel It

Here’s the third single from the brothers Jackson album, Triumph. And I’d like to know how the hell did this get stuck at #77 and not become a bigger smash. I bet its lack of success motivated Michael to make the biggest album of all time and finally get away from his bros once and for all.

90. Phoebe Snow – Mercy, Mercy, Mercy

Phoebe would have had a much bigger career had it not been for a run of bad luck with record companies and some personal tragedies. She moved to the Atlantic Records subsidiary Mirage as the 80s commenced and put out one of her best LPs, Rock Away. Her cover of the 1964 Don Covay (not the Buckinghams) hit only made it to #52.

Fun fact: Phoebe Snow was the name of a passenger train that ran through New Jersey and New York from the late 40s through the mid-60s. That’s where she got her name.

94. Joe Dolce – Shaddap You Face

If you were a Dr. Dmento fan like I was, then you heard this song a lot on his shows in 1981. It was created by an Ohio-born entertainer as part of his theatre act in Australia. Once it was recorded and released, it went to #1 to fifteen countries, including the UK, Germany, France, Belgium, and Australia, where it was the biggest selling single in the countries history for years. In the US, someone put a hit on it and whacked it at #53.

May 1st, 1982

83. Jimmy Hall – Fool For Your Love

Here’s the first in a yacht rock/ West Coast pop trifecta, starting with the former lead singer of Wet Willie, who had a Top 40 in 1980 with I’m Happy That Love Has Found You. This was the first single release from his second album, Cadillac Tracks. This soulful Alabama via L.A. pop tune will crawl up only six more spots and will be Jimmy’s last chart hit.

86. Bertie Higgins – Just Another Day In Paradise

Bertie follows up his surprise hit Key Largo with another one for the beach hammock. This breezy track will chart on the AC & Country charts just like his other single, but the dreaming will end at #46.

87. Alessi – Put Away Your Love

After the quartet Barnaby Bye split in the mid-70s, Bobby & Billy Alessi formed a duo and recorded album after album of smooth R&B-inspired pop, made for long Summer night drives down the 101. From their fifth album Long Time Friends, this synth-driven pop tune will be their only chart single when it peaks at #71.

April 30th, 1983

85. Thompson Twins – Love On Your Side

This is one of my favorite groups if the New Wave era. Originally a septet in 1981, they had shrunk down to a trio for their Side Kicks album, which spawned a Top 30 hit, Lies. This was the next single which almost followed suit, but peaked at #45, even as it became their first Top 10 in the UK. It was also the first song of many which contained clever TT song callbacks, in this case, to In The Name Of Love.

87. The Whispers – Tonight

The 80s became possibly the whitest decade of music as soul music continues to be marginalized. Please explain to me why a funky as hell dance track like this from an established group can’t get past #84. Their equally body-shaking follow-up Keep On Lovin’ Me didn’t even chart.

89. Gary Portnoy – Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Gary was a singer/songwriter who got the chance of a lifetime to write a TV show theme for a new show called Cheers. No one could imagine how popular the show would be, which in turn would make this tune iconic. The show finished near the bottom of the rating after its first year and was almost canceled. Someone thought that was the perfect time to release its theme as a single. It’s hard to imagine Pop radio latching on to it, and thus only got as high as #83. Gary, along with partner Judy Hart Angelo, would write the themes to Punky Brewster and Mr. Belvedere.

90. “Weird Al” Yankovic – Ricky

This would be Weird Al’s first chart single, a parody of the #1 hit Mickey by Toni Basil, which was a cover of the 1979 Racey UK hit, Kitty. Taking advantage of I Love Lucy‘s ubiquitous syndication broadcasts at the time, it became a big hit on MTV but only translated into a #63 peak. The duet was performed with Tress MacNeille, who has a long career as a cartoon voice artist for The Simpsons, Futurama, Tiny Toons, and others.

 

The Truth Is You Just Can’t Win

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An interesting group of debuts this week that would languish before hitting #40. Personally, I find most of these stinkers, deserving of their place in The Other Sixty, a few I liked back then and a few I still love today. So let’s review chart week sixteen from 1985 up to 1989, shall we?

April 20th, 1985

88. Bon Jovi – Only Lonely

If you want to know the difference that a producer can make with a band’s album. They make calculated decisions to help you sound better than you thought you could be. Listen to this song, then listen to anything else on their follow-up Slippery When Wet. There’s a marked difference in quality. These guys are lucky that they even got another chance and were able to record with Bruce Fairbairn. Most likely, that made all the difference between these guys recording bland rock songs like this one, a #54 zenith, eventually imploding and playing sea shacks when they finished rehab or becoming Rock & Roll Hall of Fame members.

91. Dave Edmunds – High School Nights

Dave had a bit of a resurgence in the States in the 80s, which is why he was tapped to record the title song to Porky’s Revenge. Now that I’ve written that statement, it seems like a punishment. This retro-rocker is debuting at its peak and will be Dave’s last Hot 100 entry.

93. Eric Carmen – I’m Through With Love

Eric had a surprise Top 40 hit with I Wanna Hear It From Your Lips earlier in the year. It was his first in seven years. Then he followed it up with this snoozer ballad, and the momentum was gone when it peaked at #87. Meanwhile somewhere someone was writing a script about people who danced dirty.

April 26th, 1986

94. Graham Nash – Innocent Eyes

Even though he has had success with his homies David, Stephen, and sometimes Neil, Graham is a solo one-hit-wonder. This single was his first charting 45 since 1971 and his last. It valiantly tries to overcome its mid80s production and drum machines, but enough hippies cared, and it went blind at #85.

95. E.G. Daily – Say It, Say It

Speck! Put Dottie on!” The film and TV actress, most recently seen in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure, released her debut album in late 1985. Produced by Harold Faltermeyer & Keith Forsey, this synthpop track became a #1 Dance hit. It didn’t translate into Pop success and fizzled at #70, #70.

96. Loverboy – Lead a Double Life

This sounds like a lost soundtrack tune scored to frantic movie scene montage. And Mike Reno sounds like he watched MTV for the first time and decided that he needed to sound like a Devo/ David Byrne hybrid. It’s not bad. It’s just odd. And I’m sure it confused their audience, which is why it peaked at #68. Also, it’s their first album not produced by Bruce Fairbairn, and we covered why producers are important.

April 25th, 1987

83. Journey – Why Can’t This Night Go On Forever

Raised On Radio was Journey’s attempt to go all out commercially, with Steve Perry as the producer and an eye on Thriller-like success. They would end up having four Top 20 hits from this LP, but this would be their only whiff, a meandering momentum-killing ballad that might have worked better live than it does on the radio. The night will end at #60.

86. Cameo – Back And Forth

The NY electro-funk trio gives their codpiece a workout and pulls another great dance single off of the Word Up! album. But unlike the first two, it will stop outside the Top 40 at #50. It will reach #3 Soul, their twelfth Top 10, and #11 in the UK.

91. Cinderella – Somebody Save Me

I know how folks like to make fun of Winger when it comes to glam metal band fails. But right behind White Lion are these guys. I can’t take any of their music as seriously as they seem to do. It all seems like a joke that they’re playing on the audience, Andy Kaufman-style. Or this is what I choose to believe in helping me rationalize how many millions of albums they sold. This will be rescued from going any higher than #66.

96. Dead Or Alive – Something In My House

I used to really like Pete Burns and the gang. I thought they created lots of great catchy synth disco back in the day. So much of it sounds dated now, but it always a fun trip to take. The follow-up to Brand New Lover will top out at #85. Add this to your next Halloween playlist.

Also, if you have the album Mad, Bad & Dangerous To Know, give I’ll Save You All My Kisses. That one was my album favorite.

97. Rock And Hyde – Dirty Water

Out of the ashes from Canada’s The Payola$ comes the duo of Bob Rock & Paul Hyde. I picked up this 45 back then after hearing it on Joel Denver’s Future Hits and thought it would be a big hit. I listen to it no, and I’m not sure what my thinking was. The anthemic shuffled, produced by Bruce Fairbairn, will wash out at #60.

Fun fact: Bob Rock would go to produce The Cult’s Sonic Temple, Motley Crue’s Dr. Feelgood, and Metallica’s breakout 1991 album as well as many others.

April 23rd, 1988

91. Stevie B – Dreamin’ Of Love

If someone ever tells you that talent equals success, they are morons. Case in point. What this used lacked in singing skills he made up for in persistence and dumb luck. He hustled like crazy getting his 12″ singles to club DJs in Miami and NY, where he found financial backers in the LeFrak organization, the same dudes that built giant housing projects all over the city. They kept pumping money into Stevie’s career, one boring freestyle tune after another until pop radio gave in. This dream will end at #80, but another one awaits.

Also, check his discography. He has released about seventeen greatest hits collections.

96. Agnetha Faltskog & Peter Cetera – I Wasn’t The One

Cartman meets ABBA. What could go wrong? This is probably what made Agnetha quit singing and become a recluse. It’s not as bad as I’m making it sound, but this AC ballad will only move three spots before disappearing. In the late 80s, if there was no room for this on the sappy-happy Pop playlists that were being created, that says a lot.

98. Jesse Johnson – Love Struck

Jesse is a talented funk guitarist, but he could never decide if he wanted to sound like Prince or Janet Jackson. For this track, he decided he wanted to know what you’ve done for him lately. The answer was to abandon this track at #78. Thankfully the Time would get back together in two years….time.

April 22nd, 1989

81. Eddie Money – Let Me In

On first listen, it sounds like Eddie gets caught up with a gearhead producer playing with his new 80s tech toys who didn’t realize that he made Eddie Money track sound like a bad Prince rip-off. And that intro is clunky as hell. Cringeworthy may be a better word. Then I listened again, and I softened up a bit. Eddie is valiantly trying to do his best to put his stamp on an otherwise dated track. Now I’m surprised it didn’t make it past #60.

90. Mike & The Mechanics – Seeing Is Believing

I blame this album, actually this whole project on Phil Collins. More than Phil the Shill’s solo career, this group really contributed to the idea that Genesis was nothing more than an adult contemporary outfit. And while I applaud a song for bravely starting off with a line like I believe in Jesus without it being a religious song, there’s nothing else in this song to hold my interest. Or anyone else’s as the single fizzled at #62.

93. Bad Company – Shake It Up

If you record a Bad Company album without leader Paul Rodgers, does it make a sound? Scientists can’t figure it out or may have jammed ice picks in their ears and discontinued the project. These guys should have done the same. The shaking stops at #82.

95. New Order – Round & Round

I love New Order, but I’m not that keen on this phase of their career where they let technology take over their sound. This dance hit will bounce up to #64, but if you’re looking for good songs on their Technique LP, go to Vanishing Point or Fine Time.

Better In The Long Run

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There aren’t as many candidates for The Other Sixty during the sixteenth chart week as in past weeks, so we are splitting this up into two five-year posts. The first one will be a review of 1980 up through 1985.

April 19th, 1980

79. The Fools – It’s A Night For Beautiful Girls

Here’s a Massachusetts band that started out as a lark, making fun of the Talking Heads and one year later found themselves on the Hot 100 with this track as well as the opening act for The Knack. From their debut LP, Sold Out, this single will reach #67.

82. Spyro Gyra – Catching The Sun

If the Weather Channel never used this as the music bed during their Weather on the 8s segments, they missed an opportunity. This mellow fusion instrumental would work well for that or underneath David Hartman as the intro to Good Morning America. As a single, it will rise to #68.

87. The B-52’s – Rock Lobster

This is where the legend started. Released as a 45 to promote their 1979 debut, it became one of the band’s signature tunes and a great song to ignite a house party. This kitschy dance single was dubbed New Wave, but it was truly a surf rock throwback.  That it charted and made it up to #56 during 19870 was a miracle. It will take the band all decade to finally land a Top 40 hit, Love Shack in 1989, which would be their other signature hit.

Fun fact: According to a John Lennon interview, hearing this song while he was in Bermuda with his family inspired him to go back in the studio and record new music, which would result in the Double Fantasy LP.

89. Bobby Caldwell – Coming Down From Love

The music industry is so damn fickle. Bobby should have had a bigger US career with many more hits than just What You Won’t Do For Love. This WestCoast flavored jam coulda/shoulda been as huge, but will stall at #42. It will be his fourth R&B Top 40 hit when it peaks at #28. They know what’s up.

Also, Bobby is the best example of being big in Japan. They love him so much over there, they refer to him as Mr. AOR.

98. Grace Slick – Seasons

What kind of crazy shit is this? It sounds like White Rabbit being performed at a Greek festival. All that’s missing is the smell of souvlaki and a few Opas. No wonder the Chrome Nun ran back to the money train known as Jefferson Starship, aka Starship, aka Sh. This will transition up three spots before blowing away.

April 25th, 1981

81. Cliff Richard – Give A Little Bit More

Cliff was in the middle of his US salad days after living as a huge star in the UK for decades. This was the follow-up to his Top 20 hit A Little In Love, and fell on the other side of Casey’s radar, peaking at #41. It ended up getting caught in a log jam of softer pop hits, which is a shame. If you like keyboard-driven pop-rock, give this one a try.

88. Shalamar – Make That Move

Here’s another group that couldn’t buy another Top 40 hit after The Second Time Around, even though they were releasing one jam after another. This Top 10 Soul smash will go still after hitting #60. C’mon folks, this is so damn good.

April 24th, 1982

81. Patti Austin with James Ingram – Baby, Come To Me

Can a song be a member of The Other Sixty and a #1 hit? Well, many are called, but few are chosen, and this single, the apex of WestCoast soul, fits the bill. From Patti’s Quincy Jones-produced Every Home Should Have One LP, the one Q recorded after The Dude, this duet with James Ingram was the first single released. Somehow this Rod Temperton composed got lost in the shuffle and peaked at #73. After some constant exposure on General Hospital, the 45 was rereleased and recharted in late October, eventually climbing to #1 in February 1983.

83. The Carpenters – Beechwood 4-5789

Karen & Richard dip back into the Marvelettes well for another soft rock cover of a Motown smash. Originally a #17 in 1962, this Marvin Gaye co-write will get disconnected at #73 for the duo. It will also be their last chart single.

84. Rod Stewart – How Long

Why Rod covered this 1975 Ace hit was anyone’s guess. He didn’t add much to it other than his rasp and ego. Considering it will just miss the Top 40 at #41, it’s interesting that it was never added to any of Rod’s compilations, meaning that it’s still available on his Tonight I’m Yours LP.

April 23rd, 1983

73. Eddie Rabbitt – You Can’t Run From Love

Outside of Kenny Rogers, Eddie was probably the biggest Country star on the Pop charts in the later 70s and early 80s. But by 1983, his run was over. Even though this will be another #1 Country smash, this midtempo track will stop running at #55.

77. Linda Ronstadt – Easy For You To Say

This is one of my favorite Ronstadt songs. No one can make heartbreak sound so good. From her LP Get Closer, this Jimmy Webb-penned ballad is given a sultry and seductive reading by Linda, equally coming on to her-ex and traveling the pain they caused. This will unfairly top out #54 while becoming a Top 10 AC hit.

84. Neil Diamond – Front Page Story

The third single from Neil’s Heartlight turned out to be a swing and a miss. Considering how much Pop music had changed into the 80s, it’s amazing he lasted this long. This dramatic ballad (is there any other from Neil?) will turn away after hitting #65. Neil would never hit the Top 40 again. But I think he’s doing just fine, especially with Red Sox fans.

85. Bow Wow Wow – Do You Wanna Hold Me

Letting those Burundi drums boom, this English quartet will have their second and final Hot 100 entry. This Mike Chapman-produced single will pitter-patter up to #77.

87. Golden Earring – The Devil Made Me Do It

This Dutch quartet is back with a rocker that should be played more often around Halloween. It was their follow-up to Twilight Zone, from the album Cut, but unfortunately didn’t have the near the success as that single did, peaking at #79.

April 21st, 1984

83. Shakin’ Stevens – Cry Just A Little Bit

Sometimes the Brits support artists that don’t get a fair shake in the US. Sometimes they prop up novelty acts like this one. This dude has had a long career across the pond without making much a blip over here. His only chart entry on the singles or album charts in the States will be this 45 that will weep its way to #67. Singer Sylvia will have a Top 10 Country hit with her version in 1985.

Propriety Can Lead To Notoriety

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Let’s finish out chart week number 15 from 1987 to 1989 with a group of unlucky members of The Other Sixty.

April 18th, 1987 (None of this week’s debuts hit the Top 40)

88. Gino Vannelli – Wild Horses

I thought for sure this sultry shuffler was gonna get Gino back into the Top 40. It would have been his first in six years. As it stands, this will be his last chart hit when it climbs to #55 as it gets leapfrogged by Kenny G.

91. The Other Ones – We Are What We Are

Here’s another 45 that I bought back in 1987. I was convinced that this German-Australian sextet’s anthemic single would be much bigger than its peak of #53. They did manage a Top 40 hit on their follow-up, Holiday.

93. Newcity Rockers – Black Dog

Jesus, this is horrible. While some Led Zep fans find it offensive whenever anyone tries to sound like them or dare cover one of their songs, it doesn’t bother me in the least. But do something original with it. This crappy drum sound would make Bonham throw up in his grave. It’s a poor attempt at a cash grab, and it’s not surprising that Bob Rivers oversaw this project. This does not deserve to go any higher than it is, but a soulless big leg woman will stop it at #80.

94. Kool Moe Dee – Go See The Doctor

Kool was a member of the legendary rap trio, The Treacherous Three. When they split in the mid-80s, he got his college degree and started a solo career. This was the first single released, a cautious tale about the dangers of unprotected sex and its side effects, namely VD. Why didn’t they play this during Health class? It was also an early production effort by Teddy Riley. It will start to badly burn at #89.

April 16th, 1988

87. Nu Shooz – Should I Say Yes?

Here’s a another great song relegated to the Other Sixty ranks, a soulful laidback synth-pop jam from the folks who brought you I Can’t Wait in 1986. This ended up on the wrong side of the line when it peaked at #41, but this white-as-hell dup from Portland scored their third Top 40 on the R&B charts when this peaked at #17.

88. Underworld – Underneath The Radar

Damn, another great song, one that lives up to its title. Formed out the ashes of Freur, who had an obscure hit called Doot Doot, the newly formed electro-funk-pop band called Underworld released their debut in 1988 with this track as their lead-off single. Even with its appearance in a Miami Vice episode, this never rose any higher than #74.

89. Sting – Englishman In New York

Sting mixes some reggae with his jazz for this stately ode to writer Quentin Crisp as Branford Marsalis noodles around on his sax. I feel like this is more of a Winter song than a Spring one. Don’t know if that’s why it stiffed at #84, or we’re just not as sophisticated as Gordon as his mates. A remix will hit the UK Top 20 in 1990. Also, I still cringe every time the song reaches that fat drum beat breakdown.

94. David Lee Roth – Stand Up

For his Skyscraper album, David seems to be all in on the synth stuff, which is only a good idea if you can rise above the material. [He can’t.] Or have it be entertaining. [It’s not] This will sit down at #64. He should have spent less time rock climbing and more time songwriting.

April 15th, 1989

93. Sam Brown – Stop

This is the title track to Sam’s debut, and I had hoped to hell that it would cut through at the processed dance-pop and glam metal noise back in 1989. Unfortunately, we were all getting rick-rolled and didn’t even know it. This torch ballad will, well y’know, at #70.

95. Surface –  Closer Than Friends

Aww yeah. The quiet storm trio from New Jersey is back, keeping that Happy vibe with some chill synth soul, a track about hoping to get some from a pal. It will be the first of four #1 R&B hits for the group, but it will get turned down at #57 on the Hot 100.

Fun fact: Member David Townsend’s dad is Ed Townsend, who co-wrote Let’s Get It On with Marvin Gaye. I see the theme here. Also, member David Conley played bass with the funk band, Mandrill, from 1978 to 1981.

 

 

A Four-Letter Word In the Night

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I feel like you can never have too much New Wave and/or soul in your life. But radio programmers begged to differ which is why the bulk of the Other Sixty during 1984, 1985 and 1986 from the fourteenth chart week show up here.

April 7th, 1984

77. Sergio Mendes – Olympia

Here’s a song that was written by Barry Mann & Cynthia Weil specifically for the 1984 Summer Olympics, which would be held in L.A. Sergio Mendes recorded with his homie Joe Pizzulo on vocals. It sounds very bit like an 80s over the top-we’re gonna win sports montage cliche song if there ever was one. But with jingoism riding high, even a song this cheesy could climb as high at #58 before someone swept the leg.

80. Cameo – She’s Strange

This was my introduction to Cameo and was obsessed with this cut. I just love their sparsely-arranged but aggressive electro-funk. Plus, I wanted a girl who was my Rolling Stones and my Eva Perrone. Let your imagination run wild. This #1 Soul track just missed out on becoming their first Top 40 hit peaking at #47.

84. Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Relax

How is this an alumnus of The Other Sixty, you might ask? I always thought it was a big hit, you may add. Well, you’re right – on its second go-round. The first time it was released, it climaxed at #67. It will get re-released at the beginning of 1985 and eventually hit #10. Its follow-up is under the 1985 debuts.

85. The Temptations – Sail Away

The Temps were in a big rut throughout the 80s. Their last Top 40 hit was Powerhouse in 1975. Personnel changes and label indifference contributed to a lot of inconsistent recordings. This mellow ballad with Ron Tyson on lead vocals isn’t bad, but given their pedigree, it should have been a lot more inspiring. It will capsize at #54.

89. James Ingram – There’s No Easy Way

Don’t know why, but it was hard for James to have a Top 40 hit without anyone else credited as an artist along with him. In fact, he only had one. So in many ways, fate was against him when he decided not to add any other names to this 45. That’s why this ballad will stall at #58. Also, I think he was one of the best Soul singers of the decade, and I wish he recorded more albums back then.

90. David Gilmour – Blue Light

Dave’s impetus was never in piling up Top 40 hits. But if ever one should be, this is it. Released as a single from his second solo album, About Face, and featuring Jeff Porcaro on drums, Steve Winwood on Hammond organ and a full horn section this 45 will reach a disappointing #62.

93. Modern English – Hands Across The Sea

Here’s another chart single from the melt with you guys. Their third album, Ricochet Days, provided this lackluster New Wave folly, which will only reach up two spots before drowning.

95. Josie Cotton – Jimmy Loves Maryann

I never knew I needed a New Wave version of a Looking Glass single, but I definitely do. It works so well within that 80s Valley Girls vibe. And when you fact in some Lindsey Buckingham guitar, you scratch your head to wonder why it only made it to #82. Wonder what writer Eliot Lurie thought of it?

April 6th, 1985

77. Shannon – Do You Wanna Get Away

Straddling the line between Freestyle and New Wave, Shannon didn’t get enough fans from either to make this one a Top 40 hit. It will get close as it peaked at #49. Her dance-pop fans were into it as it became a #1 Club hit.

84. Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Welcome To The Pleasuredome

Here’s another track that sounded great in the clubs, especially if you ha da kickin’ speaker system. That’s Trevor Horn’s production value right there, making the song feel ten times bigger than it is. This almost made the made a two-hit-wonder, but topped out at #48 while becoming a #2 hit in the UK, their first to not hit #1.

87. Philip Bailey – Walking On The Chinese Wall

This sounds like Phil was moved by the spirit of Paul Simon but left in all of the typical 80s production and drum machine sounds. Actually, Phil Collins produced this one as well as added the drums and percussion. At least the Phenix Horns were in the house. This will get up to #49. Also, his jazzy album, Love Will Find A Way released in 2019, is fantastic.

89. Jules Shear – Steady

I had to doublecheck to make sure this wasn’t a Top 40 hit. It has Casey stamped all over it. But for some reason, this track co-written with Cyndi Lauper will only make it to #57. How did this get missed?

90. John Parr – Magical

How in the hell did this guy end up with a musical career? That St. Elmos’ Fire theme bought him a lot of hairspray and ripped tight jeans. This song aimlessly bangs and thuds until you forget why you starting playing it in the first place. Then you see that it was co-written by Meat Loaf, and the ironic part of your brain has a great laugh, and you take it to your next party. The magical part is how it ever got as high as #73.

April 19th, 1986

88. Vanity – Under the Influence

Here’s a lady who was heavily under the influence of Prince and escaped his purple arms to have her own career. That meant The Last Dragon instead of Purple Rain. And this single co-written by Robbie Nevil, which, although will hit the Soul Top 10, will only garner a #56 Pop zenith. C’est la vie!

92. Talking Heads – Once In A Lifetime

The tour following the successful 1983 release of Speaking In tongues was documented by Jonathan Demme and released in theatres in 1984. Stop Making Sense captures the band at their best and their funkiest. The original version of this Remain In Light cut never made the Hot 100. But the live version did, almost two years after it was released as a single. Unfortunately, it will ask itself why is it only going to go up one more notch before the water holds it down.

97. Atlantic Starr – If You’re Heart Isn’t In It

In 1984 Hamish Stuart was a man without a band but with lots of new songs. Average White Band had split up the year before, and it would a few more years before he would join Paul McCartney for his Flowers In The Dirt tour. In the meantime, he had a track that he thought would be a surefire smash. It ended in the Ny quintet, Atlantic Starr’s hands, as they recorded the album, As The Band Turns with new lead vocalist Barbara Weathers. They would have a big #3 hit, Secret Lovers from this album, and this single was put out as the follow-up. It made the Top 5 on the Soul charts, but it lost its way after reaching #57 on the Hot 100.

 

Sometimes It’s Worth It To Talk

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I love starting with the beginning of the 80s and working towards the end. The song selections are so messy and all over the place at the start becoming more focused yet predictable. Let’s review The Other Sixty from the fifteenth chart week of the year from 1980 up to 1983.

April 12th, 1980

84. The Beach Boys – Goin’ On

The Beach Boys machine was barely functioning as they entered the 80s. Brian Wilson’s ambivalence about the project, Keepin’ The Summer Alive, thrust Bruce Johnston into the producer’s chair. Dennis Willson played on one track before exiting the sessions. The tracklist was a mish-mash of re-recorded abandoned tracks and some less than interesting new tunes, like this one. It will only surf up one spot before wiping out. This will also be the last Beach Boys album that Dennis Wilson plays on as he will pass away in three years.

88. Shooting Star – You’ve Got What I Need

The pride of Kansas City got their Hot 100 career started with this Gus Dudgeon-produced single. It’s a solid thumpin’ rocker that still lacked the band’s full personality. Also, they were on the English label Virgin which was mostly singing punk, and New Wave acts, so this may have confused folks a bit. That will all add up to a #76 showing.

89. Steve Forbert – Say Goodbye To Little Jo

Here’s a Mississippi-born singer-songwriter who had just had a surprise Pop hit, Romeo’s Tune from his second album, the critically-lauded Jackrabbit Slim. Steve’s stuff though was too good for Pop radio, and the follow-up was destined to fail at #85. But it’s a damn good tune, and his next album Little Stevie Orbit would be one of my favorites.

98. Leif Garrett – I Was Looking For Someone To Love

Teen idols don’t have a long shelf life, but Leif did himself no favors when it came to his career. He will end the 70s by getting into a horrific car crash, which paralyzed one of his best friends while Leif was drunk and high on ludes. That could explain this recording, which will get totaled at #78.

April 18th, 1981

81. Michael Jackson – One Day In Your Life

Damn, Motown was jealous of Michael’s career. Now that he had a mega-hit with Off The Wall on Epic Records, they started releasing old recordings of his as a quick cash grab. It didn’t work. Even though this sensitive ballad is what you’d expect from MJ, it will only climb to #55. Tito, get him some tissue.

85. The Isley Brothers – Hurry Up And Wait

Can the funk be too potent? I know that funk can move, but it also can remove. This track was too much of a monster for Pop radio to add it against How Bout Us or Sukiyaki. That’s why it was removed from many a playlist and peaked at #58, though it would hit #17 Soul.

88. Paul Anka – I’ve Been Waiting For You All My Life

Let’s not feel too bad for Mr. Anka. He’s had big hits in the last three decades and will hit the Top 40 again in 1983. But when you put out weak-ass ballads like this one, don’t expect Casey knocking on your door. He almost did, but this topped out at #48.

93. Jermaine Jackson – You Like Me Don’t You

It’s rare that two members of the same family debut on the Hot 100 together with different songs. Don’t know if it ever happened again, but it’s not surprising that it was the Jacksons who accomplished that feat. Nor is it surprising that Michael started twelve places higher than Jermaine. It’s a cool slice of smooth soul that was missing that special ingredient to take it higher. Wonder what would have happened if M & J switched songs? Written and produced by Jermaine, it will hit its zenith at #50.

April 17th, 1982

83. David Bowie – Cat People (Putting Out Fire)

A year before, Bowie hooked up with Nile Rodgers for the Let’s Dance album, he collaborated with Giorgio Moroder for the title track to the movie Cat People starring Nastassja Kinski. It will turn to ashes at #67, but neither funk nor funky.

85. Prism – Turn On Your Radar

The followup to this Canadian quartet’s first and only Top 40 hit, Don’t Let Him Know, was a departure from their AOR sound, vibing more with some of the softer WestCoast pop of the day. Don’t know if that helped or hurt them. I’d say the latter because the radar gets jammed at #64.

90. Smokey Robinson – Old Fashioned Love

Smokey is not only known for his smooth vocal prowess, but he’s also a great songwriter too. So I never have understood why he let others write songs for him and expected them to be big hits. We know he could sing the phone book. And that’s the only thing that keeps this bland song from completely sucking. The love will die at #60.

92. West Street Mob – Sing A Simple Song

The Sugarhill Records label wasn’t only about hip-hop. This electro-funk trio consisting of label head Sylvia Robinson’s son Joey put out a few albums in the early 80s. This was one-off single released in 1982 – a cover of the Sly & the Family Stone classic punched up with drum machines and vocoders, which will only slide up three before sliding back down.

95. Abba – The Visitors

ABBA started to move away from the EuroDisco pop sound towards a synth-driven New  Wave aesthetic, typified most by the title track to their final album released in late 1981. The song echoes the frosty relationship the members had during that time when they probably all felt like the others had become visitors in their own lives. It will be their last US chart single when it travels to #63.

April 16th, 1983

80. Total Coelo – I Eat Cannibals

As we begin to move out of the early 80s into the mid-80s, we also are witness to the second British Invasion due to the enormous popularity of MTV. This bizarre yet catchy New Wave single was the mastermind of UK producer Barry Blue. It was a hit all through Europe but was overcooked in the States, hitting only #66.

83. Planet P – Why Me?

Tony Carey was creating so much great music, according to him, that he needed another moniker to release it. He created Planet P for his proggier rock, but this one fit perfectly alongside The Police or Men At Work. It would actually peak as high as his best solo effort thus far when it reached #64.

86. Sparks & Jane Wiedlin – Cool Places

In between Go-Go’s albums, Jane collaborated with Sparks, dueting on two songs for their LP, In Outer Space. This synthpop dance track will reach #49 bring the Brothers Mael into the homes of a whole new generation.

88. The Temptations – Love On My Mind Tonight

I bet Dennis Edwards was frustrated as hell at the material the Temps were given continuously in the late 70s and early 80s. It’s probably the biggest reason he left the group within the year (or got fired. The drama is thick with these guys.) The song’s not bad, but it ain’t temptastic, and it’s far from Papa Was a Rolling Stone. Dag gum it. It is debuting at its peak.

 

Can We Learn From All This Time?

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We end our review of the fourteenth chart week with a grab bag of the Other Sixty debuts from 1986 up to 1989, some good, some bad, some baffling.

April 12th, 1986

88. Voices Of America – Hands Across America

One year after USA For Africa, we had this, an idea for everyone to hold hands across the US at the same time to raise money to fight hunger and homelessness. It was a logistical impossibility, but on May 25th, a group starting in New York seriously tried to make it happen, although many states were left out of the route. This was the song recorded and released ahead of the event. It seriously blows. It makes We Are The World sound like Bohemian Rhapsody. There was no star power behind the song, and two no-name session musicians sang lead vocals. The rest of the band was mostly Toto. The single only made it up to #65.

89. Platinum Blonde – Somebody Somewhere

This Canadian trio looked like they could open for Poison but sounded like they toured with Honeymoon Suite. They had five Top 40 hits in Canada, including a #1 (y’know, cause CanCon). This will be their only chart hit South of their border when it hits #82.

Fun fact: The lead singer, Mark Holmes, opened up the Mod Club Theatre, a well-respected music venue in downtown Toronto.

90. Psychedelic Furs – Pretty In Pink

The story goes that Molly Ringwald turned director John Hughes on to the Psych Furs, specifically this song. John, in turn, used it as a bit of inspiration for his newest teen triangle love affair naming his new film after it. He also had his music director, Howard Deutsh ask the Furs to re-record a new version of it, which plays at the beginning of the film. This single almost became their first Top 40 hit as it stopped dead at #41 while Invisible Touch and Danger Zone jumped over it.

91. Baltimora – Living In The Background

Here’s something I learned about this artist. They were an actual band and not just an alias for lead singer Jimmy McShane. Also, Jimmy most likely did not sing lead on Tarzan Boy or this single. And the whole project was done in Italy and labeled Italian Disco even as it has a distinctly New Wave feel. This single is a lot less kitschy than TB, which is probably why it only made it up to #87.

92. Bourgeois Tagg –  Mutual Surrender (What A Wonderful World)

This one was my jam that Spring, a New Wave dance rocker packed with a couple of chorus hooks. The white flag will be waved at #52, but Brent Bourgeois & Larry Tagg will nab a Top 40 hit from their second and final album called I Don’t Mind At All. Produced by Todd Rundgren, the duo will then join his Nearly Human tour.

96. Bonnie Tyler – If You Were A Woman (And I Was A Man)

Todd’s old pal, producer Jim Steinman tried to give Bonnie another hit with this bombastic gender-bending ballad written by Desmond Child. Everyone was confused, and the single stiffed at #77. Desmond had a snit about it and rewrote the song when he started working with Bon Jovi. I mean, why not rip yourself off? The new version went to #1 and kickstarted Jovi’s career.

April 11th, 1987

82. Bruce Willis – Young Blood

Whatever cred Bruce built up as the wisecracking David Addison on Moonlighting, he immediately threw it away with this vanity project. What made it worse was the song list this egomaniac thought he could tackle. Bruce already destroyed the R&B classic Respect Yourself, and now he goes after the Coasters’ 1957 Top 10 smash. There is no passion evident in this production, certainly not in the vocals, mostly because he did not have the chops for it. It sounds like a shitty karaoke album minus any of the fun. The fact that it reached #68 is baffling to me.

90. Stacey Q – Shy Girl

Stacy, please take both of your hearts and go home. I believe we’re done here. The track, recorded in 1985, will top out at #89.

95. Frozen Ghost – Should I See

The Canadian band Sheriff put an album out in 1983 and a single called When I’m With You. Both tanked with the song, only reaching #61. Guitarist Arnold Lanni formed Frozen Ghost after Sheriff split up in 1985. This single will only hit #69 but will be a Top 5 hit on the Rock charts. And then in early 89, the band had some planning to do.

April 9th, 1988

87. Sweet Sensation – Take It While It’s Hot

These two singles should give you an idea of the dance music that Pop radio supported in the late 80s as an antidote to the glam metal that MTV was promoting. Spoiler alert: there were no winners. Living in New York, I was continuously pounded in the ears with this music so much that I can’t tell one song from another. This Bronx trio will sashay up to #67, but I guarantee you it went Top 10 on the Z100 rotation.

94. Noel – Like A Child

Here’s another freestyle artist from the Bronx. Noel Pagan follows up his dance hit Silent Morning with a full-length album and another single. It was his first #1 on the Dance Club charts and will slowly walk up to #67 on the Hot 100.

April 8th, 1989

80. Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians – Circle

The record company made a mistake by relating this track as the follow-up to What I Am. It’s not a bad song, but there are better ones on the album. Love Like We Do would have been my choice. It’s a pleasant uptempo pop ditty that keeps its hippie vibe intact. As it stands, the circle closes at #49, and the band will be a one-hit-wonder.

91. Figures On A Beach – You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet

This New Wave rock band from Detroit had released two albums that barely made a whisper. I liked the song No Stars from their second album, Standing On Ceremony, but that didn’t chart even at their grandma’s house. So the record label had them record a foolish, desperate cover of BTO’s You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet. Yes, it charted and reached #67, but the band broke up right after that.

93. The Replacements – I’ll Be You

After the group fired founding member, guitarist Bob Stinson, their sound became more polished and aimed for mainstream success. With their sixth album, Don’t Tell a Soul, they achieved their biggest Pop acceptance when this song climbed to #51. It was also a #1 Modern Rock hit, so they were able to keep most of their old fans as well.

94. Melissa Etheridge – Similar Features

After gigging for most of the 80s as well as encountering some false starts, Melissa finally released her debut in late 1988.  As a part of the new wave of female singer-songwriters such as Michelle Shocked and Tracy Chapman, she immediately received airplay for some of her songs such as Bring Me Some Water and Chrome Plated Heart. This was the only single to chart on the Hot 100, and it peaks at its debut while becoming her biggest hit on the Mainstream Rock charts.

A Stranglehold On A Certain Feeling

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We’re reviewing the mid-80s, 1983-86, to be exact, which is why we see more New Wave and songs with a synthy vibe. Hip hop makes an appearance and some proto hair rock which will rule the last years of the decade. What else does the fourteenth chart week bring?

April 9, 1983

75. Night Ranger – Sing Me Away

This was their follow-up to the group’s first Top 40 hit, Don’t Tell Me You Love Me. The midtempo rocker was sung by drummer, Kelly Keaggy, and will be sung away at #54.

77. Walter Egan – Full Moon Fire

It’s been five years since Walter charted on the Hot 100, and he’s back with a track from his fifth album, Wild Exhibitions, that should have burned its way up the chart. Instead, this inferno turned to ash at #46. It will be his last chart single, although he got a writing credit on Eminem’s We Made You cause Dre though he might have sampled/borrowed its melody from Walter’s Hot Summer Nights. I think Walter has a good lawyer.

85. Ultravox – Reap The Wild Wind

The first single from the band’s sixth album is notable for two reasons. One, they were beginning to sound more and more like OMD. Two, the album was produced by Sir George Martin, right after Sir Paul’s Tug Of War. This Top 20 UK hit may have been too good or too dramatic for Pop radio and blew away after hitting #71.

87. Gerard McMahon – Count On Me

Gerard spent many years in the 70s as a session musician in NY and LA as well as a composer for PBS projects. He even had a stint playing bass with Jackson Browne’s touring band. After fronting the bands Gerard & Kid Lightning, he released his first solo album, No Looking Back in 1983. This single will be his only chart hit inching up another two notches before slipping away.

April 14, 1984

83. Sheena Easton – Devil In A Fast Car

Sheena hadn’t fully got her freak on as she was still singing dopey love songs like Almost Over You. This single was a nice peek of what was to come once Prince got his “hands” on her. Pop radio wasn’t so sure, so the car will break down at #79. Richard Page & Steve George from Mr. Mister sing backing vocals.

89. Dolly Parton – Downtown

Even though we may not have needed a #80 Country cover of the Petula Clark classic, I am not going to begrudge Dolly anything. She’s an icon and an American hero. She’s reading children’s books to my kids before bed, for chrissakes. BTW, do you think Mr. Wilhelm had this version in mind for George’s project?

90. Michael Gore – Theme From Terms Of Endearment

This James L. Brooks movie cleaned up at 56th Academy Awards – Best Film, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor and Best Actress. One week later, the theme to the film composed by Best Film Score nominee, Michael Gore was on the Hot 100. These were the goofy things that would happen on the charts through the 80s, as this instrumental would coast to #84 before everyone moved on.

92. Yarbrough & Peoples – Don’t Waste Your Time

Cavin & Alisa go back to the well again for “another” Don’t Stop The Music. Unfortunately, the well was running dry on the Pop charts, at least. This will peak at #49 while becoming their second Soul #1.

April 13th, 1985

85. Kurtis Blow – Basketball

Kurtis was one of the first rap stars but really didn’t get to share in the money that others will make in the ensuing decades. Respect doesn’t really pay the bills. This hip hop pioneer has his second chart single released from his fifth album. Even though this will only dunk up to #71, I feel like I heard this song constantly that Summer.

90. Fiona – Talk To Me

Fiona Flanagan has an Irish name with none of the luck. This single, produced by the Good Rats’ Peppi Marchello and written by her future husband, Beau Hill, should have easily coasted into the Top 40. But the conversation ended at #64. She’d star in an episode of Miami Vice during their second season as a teenage prostitute.

93. Robin George – Heartline

Here’s a synth rocker from British singer and guitarist Robin George, who released his debut in 1984 and didn’t pick up his solo career again until the early 2000s. The synths were played by Adrian Lee, who would go on to play with Mike & the Mechanics for their first few albums. This single will slide up one spot before flatlining and falling off the chart.

Fun fact: Robin would form a duo with vocalist Sean Harris called Notorious, who would chart in late 1990 with a song called The Swalk.

 

 

Hope My Premonition Misses

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What I love about the early 80s is that the charts still have lots of turnover, so there are more chances for new singles to duke it out. It also means the bulk of week fourteen’s group of The Other Sixty will come from 1980, 1981, and 1982.

April 5th, 1980

82. Anne Murray – Lucky Me

Anne continued to be a presence on the Country and AC charts through the 80s, even as her pop status waned. This was her first miss since You Needed Me gave her a significant boost in 1978. It will skim the Top 40 bottom at #42.

83. Jennifer Warnes – When The Feeling Comes Around

This was the third single from Jennifer’s Shot Through The Heart LP. It has a friendly little Westcoast vibe with an island lilt that had to compete with The Dirt Band’s An American Dream and lost. It came all the way around to #45 but was also a #15 AC hit.

84. Red Rider – White Hot

Most folks know this Canadian quintet by the song Lunatic Fringe. Believe it or not, that never even charted on the Hot 100. This was their first chart entry from their debut, Don’t Fight It. This midtempo rocker written about poet Arthur Rimbaud will scorch its way to #48.

85. Neil Diamond – The Good Lord Loves You

Bob Gaudio found this song written by an unknown Country songwriter named Richard Fagan. When Bob was hired to produce Neil’s September Morn album in 1979, he gave him this song to sing, which jumpstarted Richard’s career. One of the few bright spots on the album, it was only be blessed with a #67 showing.

89. The Knack – Can’t Put A Price On Love

Well damn, this ended quickly. Less than a year ago, this LA power-pop sensation was ruling the charts for a month and a half with My Sharona. A quick follow-up album yielded the #38 Baby Talks Dirty and this one, a Stones knock-off, which will be stamped with a #62. They were now nuked.

90. Peter McIan – Solitaire

This is only chart single from Peter’s only album. He won’t reach number one, but this pop-rocker will instead get to the lonely figure of #52. Peter became well-known as a producer in the 80s striking gold with Men At Work’s first two albums, Business as Usual and Cargo, as well as Mr. Mister’s 1984 debut, I Wear The Face.

93. Leon Haywood – Don’t Push It, Don’t Force It

Leon was still getting freaky into the new decade, but now he was taking his time sliding down into your canyon. Borrowing the Ladies Night groove from Kool and his gang, He’ll get his biggest Soul hit when it peaks at #2 while jamming itself up to #49 Pop. It will be his only UK Top 40 as it pushed its way to #12.

94. RCR – Scandal

Perennial background singers Sandra Rhodes, Charles Chalmers, and Donna Rhodes stepped out into the spotlight with their only full-length album release as a trio. This AOR Westcoast pop-rock burned out at its debut, disappearing after two weeks. It deserved a better fate. Also check out Give It To You, a track produced by Blue Weaver, keyboardist in the Bee Gees band.

April 11th, 1981

83. Dr. Hook – That Didn’t Hurt Too Bad

You never know how high the sleaze factor is going to be with a Dr. Hook track. But this ballad is tender and relatively disease-free. Of course, it will peak at #69.

85. Diana Ross – One More Chance

Motown Records knew the Boss was about to jump ship. So they started releasing anything they could their hands on that had her voice on it. They put out the collection To Love Again to capitalize on It’s My Turn, pad it out with some hits, and a few from the vault, such as this song. This bombed on all fronts, only reaching #79. Motown should have released another single from the chicly-produced Diana album.

86. Stevie Wonder – Lately

No can make you feel the heartache and pain of a relationship that’s about to break apart than Stevie. God bless this beautiful soul. This must have been too real for Pop radio as it only reached #64, but over in the UK, it was a #3 smash. Twelve years later, Jodeci took their version up to #4 from the Uptown MTV Unplugged sessions.

89. Leon Redbone – Seduced

Talk about someone who marched to a different drummer. Leon’s brand of vaudevillian ragtime seemed out of step with the world around him in the 70s. But he found a home with Warner Brother Records and released three albums with them. A label jump to Atlantic for his fourth LP, From Branch to Branch, provide his only chart single, which will acquire a #72 zenith. His distinctive baritone has been heard on TV themes such as Mr. Belvedere and as Leon the Snowman in the Christmas classic, Elf.

93. Dan Hartman – Heaven In Your Arms

This was a new track for me. I thought I had all of Dan’s albums, but I missed this one. He reaches his previous disco sound for a yachtier piece of the pie. This self-produced soft pop single will rise to #86 before the pearly gates close.

April 10th, 1982

73. Diana Ross – Work That Body

The Boss gets into the aerobics game with this military dance number. It makes me sad that anyone would workout just to eat a piece of cake, as Diana mentions. I think we’ve progressed past this, but Sometimes I’m not too sure. It looks like everyone is either on their way to or coming from a workout. This will peak at #44 while becoming a Top 10 UK smash. Guess they needed to work off those chips and pints.

82. Shalamar – A Night To Remember

Yeah, now this is a jam. I don’t know how something this good stalls at #44. Of course, it had to directly compete with Patrice’s Forget Me Nots, and I guess we could only have one good urban dance song at Pop radio at a time, which has now been completely reversed. Play it now and get back into it.

87. The Police – Secret Journey

How many people, including Police fans, remember this song? I never understood why this was released as the follow-up to Spirits In The Material World. It’s a great song like most form the trio, but there were better ones on Ghost In The Machine, such as Invisible Sun, Too Much Information, and Rehumanize Yourself. This journey would end at #46.

88. Chris Rea – Loving You

Chris is four albums deep and hasn’t delivered a Top 40 follow-up Fool in the States. This one should have done the trick – a sweet mellow pop-rock single that would instead tank at #88. Fairport Convention’s Dave Mattacks plays drums on this track.