There are a lot more cherries than pits in this group of The Other Sixty from chart week #20. Let’s see what 1983 up to 1985 produced.
May 21st, 1983
There is only one band who could have written the theme to a movie where a nerd professor of literature named Clifford Skridlow leads a double life as a pimp, and evens get down with James Brown at a player’s ball. It would be Devo’s last chart hit when it peaked at #59. It was also a Screamer of the Week at 92.7 WLIR during the first week of June 1983.
60s & 70s R&B veterans were having a tough time on Pop radio in the early 80s. Eventually, most of them will have a comeback. This two-steppin’ boogie track should have easily done it for them, but it stalled at #66, even while becoming another #1 Soul smash.
Fun fact: I’ve met Gladys Knight twice by luck, and she’s every bit as warm and friendly as you’d imagine. Funny thing is, we’ve lived in the same small town for more than a decade, and I’ve never seen her once.
After BJ bottomed out in the mid-70s from years of drug and alcohol abuse, he did what most folks did back then. He became a born-again Christian. Turning his music career to gospel, he started churning out the Word year after year. By keeping his toe in the Country world, he was able to make some secular music as well. He ended up with two Country #1s from his album, New Looks. This one crossed over to the Pop charts, but it’s debuting at its peak. It would be his last Hot 100 entry.
This was the lead single from the trio’s eighth album in six years and their first entry on the Hot 100 since 1977. This is the kind of 80s song that had no chance back then but gets discovered by every current DJ trying to capture a vibe looking for forgotten synth tracks. The 45 finds some brass in pocket and goes to look for some attention after reaching #82.
Also, can you tell me what’s going on in this picture? Is Barbara Mitchell (on the right) trying to tell us how one makes it in the music business?
May 19th, 1984
An unheralded purveyor of power pop, Oklahoman DT was able to breakthrough in 1975 on the first wave with the Raspberries and Badfinger with the Top 20 hit, I’m On Fire. Once New Wave took hold in the early 80s, his style fit in nicely, and he was able to have another big hit with Girls. In between those two, he had bad luck and ongoing record label issues, which kept the public from hearing his rock confections. Twilley Don’t Mind is a great place to start if you’re looking. This #77 single was his last chart hit, and his last album, Always, was released in 2014.
Martin Page & Brian Fairweather, the duo who wrote Kim’s last Top 40 at that time, Invisible Hands, wrote her third single as well. This mid-tempo pop song easily could have been a hit, but was Pop radio only looking for another Bette Davis Eyes from Kim? It will reach the Top 10 on the AC charts while posting a #74 showing.
Fun fact: Songwriter Martin Page will have a solo hit of his won in 1994 with In The House Of Stone And Light.
Former Q-Tips lead singer Paul Young nabbed his first Top 40 hit with a song written but the former Nerves’ guitarist, Jack Lee called Come Back And Stay. Paul decided to re-release this single, and it became a #2 in the UK while just missing over in the States peaking at #45.
This was the thirteenth #1 Country hit in a row and their last Hot 100 entry for fourteen years, until 1998’s How Do You Fall In Love. By that time, they had amassed 32 Country #1s.
Fun fact: Did you know there was a Canadian Country band named Alabama in the 70s before this Alabama? And that this Alabama only changed their name once the Canadian band broke up?
Do you find yourself bleeding from the ears, due to the tequila-soaked egos from parts of Journey, Santana and, maybe Cabo Wabo? Then you need to call the law firm of Hagar, Schon, Aaronson, and Shrieve. They won’t do much, maybe laugh loudly, and your ears won’t stop bleeding. But their on-hold song is a loop of their destruction of a Procol Harum classic, which fizzled at #94.
I’m not sure if this band was formed on a lark or if it was three bored ladies trying to have some fun. They ended up being the most charted female group in Britain. The first few albums tend to lean towards the we’re-just-having-a-laugh image that they often presented. Their second album produced their first hit, Cruel Summer, and this was the follow-up, a song about having bad sex while The Godfather II was on TV. It will move up one spot before wondering if anyone was talking to it.
May 18th, 1985
Kim was the lead singer for Max Webster, a superb Canadian prog-rock band that had no success outside of their country. Seriously check them out.They were also favorites of Rush’s Geddy Lee. When they split up in the early 80s, Kim’s solo career took off, and his second album, Akimbo Alogo, spawned his only chart hit South of the border. It will only reach #86, but it received lots of Rock radio airplay. Check out Patio Lanterns as well from his next album, Shakin’ Like A Human Being.
This single was originally recorded and released on the band’s 1983, Amore. This version ran at almost six minutes, which is a lot of a single that’s not about cakes melting in the dark. It will only reach #58, but their next three single will hit the Top 40. Also, was this ever used in promos for The Walking Dead?
More unjustly dissed Canadians, this time in the form of Paul Hyde, Bob Rock, and the Payolas (without the dollar sign S) Maybe radio programmers had an issue playing songs by a band named after the illegal activity they love to do most. They missed out on great singles such as Eyes Of A Stranger and this David Foster-produced 45, their only chart entry at #84.