Run Where My Thoughts Take Me

gvn

We are at the halfway point in the year, chart week twenty-six. I just wanted to take this time and say thank you to those who have read The Other Sixty posts, of which there have 68 thus far. Let’s jump back in and review 1980, 1981, and 1982.

June 28th, 1980

67. Queen – Play The Game

How in the hell does a song that’s only 27 spots from the Top 40 by an internationally successful band at its peak coming off of its first number one smash peak at #42 instead? Maybe it was jarring to hear that opening wash of synths from an “absolutely no synths” band? Perhaps they should have followed up with Crazy Thing… with Need Your Loving Tonight instead? None of this would matter in a few months when their game-changing single, Another One Bites The Dust, hits #1 in the Fall.

79. Gary Burbank with Band McNally – Who Shot J.R.?

Yes, that’s how big the TV show Dallas was in 1980. So huge, that the cliffhanger of who fired a few slugs into Larry Hagman became international news as well as a Country song from a Cincinnati DJ on WLW. [You may remember his Earl Pitts monologues, which were eventually simulcasted for decades.] This single shot up a like a Ewing oil well to #67 before going dry.

82. Roy Orbison & Emmylou Harris – That Lovin’ You Feelin’ Again

While the Urban Cowboy soundtrack was crushing on the charts during the Summer of 1980, the soundtrack to the Meatloaf film, Roadie, was continually getting thrown by the bull. This terrific pairing created a pleasant-sounding Country song with no lasting Pop appeal. While it drives up to #55, it crossed over to the Country charts hitting #6 and nabbing Roy his first Grammy and Emmylou, her second.

83. Firefall – Love That Got Away

This was the second single from the Colorado sextet’s fourth album, Clouds Across the Sun. The first one, Headed For A Fall, hit #35. This upbeat acoustic Yacht Rocker would grab the cool double quarter zenith.

84. Teri DeSario with K.C. – Dancin’ In The Streets

Teri D and Harry C had a huge #2 smash at the turn of the decade with Yes, I’m Ready, a Barbara Mason cover. Hoping that lightning would strike twice, they recorded a disco-light version of the Martha & the Vandellas 1964 hit. We all decided to hold out for a Mick Jagger/ David Bowie rendition, so the dancing stopped for this one at #66. Teri got so frustrated, she started recording Christian music.

85. Herb Alpert – Beyond

Herb followed up the success of his 1979 Rise album with the title track to his new 1980 release. Now sure if this really went beyond anything unless you think Tangerine Dream with a trumpet solo sounds edgy. A #50 showing was its best. It placed six spots higher on the Soul charts.

88. Tony Joe White – I Get Off On It

Have you ever wondered what the guy who sang Polk Salad Annie would sound like if he embraced disco and used various names of chocolate bars as sexual metaphors? Well, you’re in luck because here’s Tony doing just that with his first chart hit in ten years. It will melt in your hands at #79.

89. The Kingbees – My Mistake

You gotta hand it to a band who can rhyme chick with mistake. This L.A. power-pop trio released two albums, but their only chart hit came from their first one. The 45 is an enticing mix of 50s rockabilly and 60s garage, but it will excuse itself at #81.

90. David Hudson – Honey, Honey

This is not a cover of the 1974 ABBA hit. Instead, we have some smooth Miami soul by David, courtesy of the Henry Stone franchise. Even if the lyrics reak of Camembert, this single will drip its way up to #59. It will crack the R&B Top 40 at #37.

July 4th, 1981

83. Gino Vannelli – Nightwalker

I’m a big Gino fan and have always found the combination of his sincere yet commanding vocal prowess with his brothers’ penchant for gorgeously layered synth arrangements irresistible. His music is at once smooth yet funky, ambitious yet catchy. This is the second single from his first album on the Arista label after almost a decade recording for A&M. It was his follow-up to Living Inside Myself and bears a resemblance to the title track of his 1974 LP, Powerful People. But whereas prog-pop was in fashion back then, the landscape changed considerably by the early 80s and so this single wasn’t as successful, just missing the Casey call at #41.

90. Shamus M’Cool – American Memories

This single is considered the rarest of all that have charted on the Hot 100. Only ten copies were pressed. That means that it mainly reached #80 based on radio airplay, mainly in Los Angeles, without a means for the public to buy it. Funny that M’Cool, aka Richard Doyle, was a comedian because the joke was on him. This country-rock single was a clumsy attempt to detail all the great and embarrassing things about America. But when he discusses having trucks and trains with riots and slaves as the bad vs. good, the Energy crisis as a phony recession and that we are the greatest race on Earth, I have to wonder if he learned his American history from someone’s fake university. Y’know who I mean.

95. Silverado – Ready For Love

Here’s a quintet from Connecticut who sound as exciting as this intro. The main duo, Carl Shillo and Buzz Goodwin had been recording folk-rock under this moniker since 1976, churning out two albums. Then they turned to pop-rock and filled their hopes with a possible appearance on Solid Gold that never came. At least this single charted and rose up three spots before splitting.

July 3rd, 1982

86. Rick Bowles – Too Good To Turn Back Now

And now we have the pride of Shelby, North Carolina with a single from his debut, Free For The Evening. It’s has a friendly soft Westcoast vibe just as the rest of the album does. His only chart single will turn back at #77. Rick went on to co-write several Country hits, including Down Home by Alabama, and I Can’t Win For Losin’ You by Earl Thomas Conley, both #1s.

87. Missing Persons – Words

A straight-up New Wave classic. This was the first chart single from the quirky L.A. quintet led by Dale Bozzio and her well-places pieces of glass. It only hit #42, so you really need to ask yourself, “Did you hear them, and did you care?

90. April Wine – Enough Is Enough

I agree, guys. I’m done, too. This breezy rock single had it at #50. To date, these guys are keeping their Nova Scotia fans warm with their power rock.

A Relationship Built Entirely On Trust

ja

As we review the second half of the decade during chart week twenty-five, I feel like most of these songs deserved their title of The Other Sixty, with a few exceptions. Let’s take a look at the debuts between 1985 and 1989.

June 22nd, 1985

74. “Weird” Al Yankovic – Like A Surgeon

Madonna was huge in 1985, so a parody of Like A Virgin made sense. But like most novelty records, they don’t have much time before they become annoying. Al’s time was at #47.

77. Sade – Your Love Is King

Sade’s follow up to Smooth Operator was actually the first single that the band released in the UK where it went to #6. This song goes down like butter melting in a hot pan. It probably fogged up too many Pop programmers’ glasses. R&B radio had no problem with it sit reached #35. Naturally, it became a Top 10 AC hit, but the king was overthrown on the Hot 100 at #54.

June 28th, 1986

88. John Waite – If Anybody Had a Heart

John scored an invitation to sing a song written by JD Souther & Danny Kortchmar on the soundtrack of About Last Night, a Rob Lowe/Demi Moore rom-com. If anybody had a heart, they’d tell John he should have turned it down. #76 was its zenith.

92. Beach Boys – Rock N Roll To The Rescue

The 80s were not kind to the Beach Boys. If you’re following the movie, Love & Mercy, this song would have been recorded during the scenes that Brian was getting financially fleeced, randomly drugged and yelled at for eating matza ball soup by Eugene Landy. It was originally recorded for Made In U.S.A., yet another band compilation, this one with a grammatically-challenged title. The search party will give up at #68.

93. Limited Warranty – Victory Line

Here’s something from Minneapolis that doesn’t sound like Prince. After winning Star Search in 1985, this pop-rock quintet recorded their only album. This was the lead single. We demanded our money back at #79.

97. Dennis DeYoung – This Is The Time

Dennis’ post-Styx career was not going the way he had hoped it would. Maybe he needed someone like Tommy Shaw to give him constant ratings on the cheese-o-meter. Without that, you get limp ballads like this one that barely gets out of the starting gate. This #93 single was also on the Karate Kid II soundtrack.

98. Yarbrough & Peoples – I Wouldn’t Lie

Cavin Yarbrough & Alicia Peoples are here to remind you that they once wrote the hit, Don’t Stop the Music, by recording a faster version of it with a new title. Someone’s pants catch on fire at #93.

June 27th, 1987

89. Will To Power – Dreamin’

Bob Rosenberg was a DJ for the R&B/dance music station WQHT in Miami in the mid-80s,which inspired him to record some of his own jams. He recorded this song as a tribute to his sister who had recently passed away. Epic Records picked it up and released it as a single. It only reached #50 but was a Top 20 Club hit, and it netted his project a full-length album which would be released a year later.

Fun fact: Bob’s mom was Gloria Mann, who recorded a pair of Top 20 hits in the mid-50s: Earth Angel and Teen Age Prayer.

91. Jon Astley – Jane’s Getting Serious

Jon was a British record producer (and Garry Shandling doppelganger) who had worked with Eric Clapton, the Eagles, and specifically on the Who’s Who Are You LP with Glyn Johns. He is also well-known for his album remastering. After co-writing and producing Marilyn Martin’s Top 40 hit, Night Moves, Atlantic Records gave him a chance to record his own album, Everyone Loves The Pilot (Except The Crew). It’s basically a 45-minute ad for the Fairlight III. I would never call this a New Wave song, but it did get a lot of airplay on WLIR, and that’s where I first heard it. Even with a guitar solo by Slowhand himself, this single only made a #77 showing. Also, Len O’Kelly talked about this song as one of his Greatest Misses on one of my favorite blogs to read, 45 Ruminations Per Megabyte.

93. Kool & The Gang – Holiday

This song breaks an eleven song Top 40 chart streak for these former funkateers. There’s a good reason why, as this song is overproduced to the point where you can’t hear any of the performances on it. They will start a non-Top 40 streak, which they continue to this day when it takes the day off at #66.

June 25th, 1988

89. Tony Terry – Forever Yours

It sounds like the guys who wrote this song were looking for an instant wedding classic ballad and used Freddie Jackson’s You Are My Lady as a base, changing it just enough not to get sued. Unfortunately, Tony does not have Freddie’s charm or vocal presence and thus forever ends at #80.

96. Bros. – When Will I Be Famous?

This was a trio that featured two brothers, but Bros doesn’t rhyme with hose. It’s pronounced bross and rhymes with Goss, the brothers’ last name. It makes no sense to me either. Their song asks a question that will be answered at #83 in the States. But in the UK, they were so ridiculously popular. They even headlined a concert at Wembley Stadium in 1989, playing for over 75000 people.

June 24th, 1989

83. .38 Special – Comin’ Down Tonight

How prophetic. Don Barnes had been replaced by Max Carl for the band’s Rock & Roll Strategy in 1988. Would you have known that if I hadn’t told you? Would it have made a difference? I’m not sure I would have cared either.

90. Sa-Fire – Gonna Make It

I don’t think so. It’s more Latin freestyle dance music starting the market. Don’t we have enough? Apparently not as it’s starting to fill up the back end of the charts as well, specifically up to #71.

93. Billy Squier – Don’t Say You Love Me

No problem there. Now here’s your pink tanktop. Please slither out of the room with your last chart hit after you reach #58.

94. White Lion – Little Fighter

A hair metal from Brooklyn – what’s not to love? Well, most of it actually. Wouldn’t it have made more sense for Stuart, the little fighter on Beavis & Butthead, to wear a White Lion t-shirt rather than a Winger one? The struggle is over at #52.

97. Mica Paris – My One Temptation

Finally, we get to the good stuff. This is what the next generation who grew up on Dionne Warwick sounds like, the Bacharach/David years, not the Psychic Friends hotline era. This was Mica’s (mi-sha) debut single recorded when she was 19, but her voice sounded much older and wiser. And I love those muted trumpet licks. Of course, something this good in 1989 will not catch on, which is why it debuts at its peak. By the way, Prince heard this and immediately collaborated with Mica on her next album.

 

No Respect For Human Rights

abbaon

After the giant pool of The Other Sixty songs, chart week 25 brings us a much shorter list, so much so that if we have broken it up into two posts. So here is the first half of the 80s – 1980 to 1984.

June 21st, 1980

76. Average White Band – Let’s Go Round Again

The Scottish honkies have left most of the funk behind, embracing the West Coast vibes along with some four on the floor disco. It will be their last go-round on the Hot 100 as it peaks at #53. It will also be their eleventh and final R&B Top 40 hit.

83. The Pretenders – Stop Your Sobbing

The Pretenders debut is a back to front, all classic, no filler album. It’s kind of release that folks appreciate more in retrospect, so I’m happy the single Brass In Pocket hit the Top 20 amidst the Air Supply onslaught. This was the snappier follow-up but fell short at #65.

86. Grateful Dead – Alabama Getaway

This was the Dead’s first chart entry in five years. Keith & Donna Godchaux just left the band, and Brent Mydland was their new keyboardist. They left the Lowell George-produced boogie sounds of Shakedown Street and returned to some bluesy rock again, but they only go away to #68. It would be another seven years until their next studio album released along with the single Touch Of Grey.

88. Kiss – Shandi

Kiss dials down the disco a tad, but the damage with rock fans drawing a line between the two genres was already done. They wouldn’t score another Top 40 hit until 1990’s Forever. This one will breathe fire until #47.

99. John Denver – Dancing With The Mountains

Everyone tried their hand at disco back then, even if they were way stepping out of the comfort zone. Did anyone expect to hear the line “Everybody’s got the dancing fever.” come from this guy? Ouch. Stay in your lane, dude. This will crawl up two notches before disappearing.

June 27st, 1981

81. Brothers Johnson – The Real Thing

I heard a story during a 1976 AT 40 Countdown about how Louis & George used to get booked as opening acts for touring Motown revues as teenagers. These guys were too talented to only have had four Top 40 hits, especially as they were under Q’s wing. I assume they got discarded to the disco sucks movement, which is why a superior disco-funk track like this languished at #67.

83. The Jacksons – Walk Right Now

The fourth single from the Triumph album was a huge #1 dance hit, which probably sealed its fate on Pop radio. How does a song this vibrant only register a #73 showing? It would become a Top 10 UK smash.

84. Dan Hartman – It Hurts To Be In Love

Here’s Dan Hartman walking away from the disco of Instant Replay to do a cheesy pop cover of Gene Pitney’s 1964 Top 10 hit. This one will feel the pain at #72.

87. The Who – Don’t Let Go The Coat

It was great to hear The Who on Radio again with You Better You Bet after a three-year absence. It’s a shame this follow-up didn’t get the momentum going as this will let go at #84.

90. Robert Gordon – Someday, Someway

Marshall Crenshaw had a Top 40 hit with this song in 1982, but neo-rockabilly singer Robert Gordon recorded the first version. It was his second and final chart hit, and it be bop a lula’d to #76.

92. Abba – On And On And On

This single from the Swedish quartet’s Super Trouper album was specifically released in the US rather than England or even Sweden. I think it’s because of the distinct Beach Boys vocal arrangement on the chorus. It just made it sound more American. Coincidently Mike Love would cover this song later in the year for his Looking Back With Love solo debut. The single will only go up two spots.

June 26th, 1982

82. Larry Lee – Don’t Talk

The former guitarist of the Ozark Mountain Daredevils released his WestCoast flavored debut, Marooned in 1982. This was the lead single that quietly moved up a spot and left. He should have released this one instead.

June 25th, 1983

70. Crosby, Stills & Nash – War Games

Now that David Crosby was fully back with CSN, they decided a live album was in order. They tacked on this studio track which was recorded for the film War Games because who knows paranoia better than cokeheads. It will play a game up to #45 before being destroyed by Joshua.

June 23rd, 1984

85. Yes – It Can Happen

This is the third single from the surprise hit album from Yes, 90215, just five numbers away from where Luke Perry lived. This #51 track was one of the few songs written for Chris Squire, Trevor Rabin, and Alan White’s new band Cinema before Jon Anderson got involved, and it became a Yes project. It can happen.

88. Johnny Mathis – Simple

Here’s a song that should be a Yacht Rock classic, if there is such a thing. This sweet shuffled will be the second single release from his album, A Special Part Of Me, and will be his last chart entry at #81.

95. R.E.M. – So. Central Rain (I’m Sorry)

Not sure why I loved these guys so much, but I did. Maybe it was because their songs were easy to learn on guitar. Or perhaps I felt like I can easily be a member of the band? This Reckoning album track was their second chart entry, and it will move up only ten more spots. Also, I’m sorry I never called.

 

A Way With The Word

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Chart week twenty-four had the most debuts thus far, which did not make the Top 40 – 54, to be exact. That is why we broke this week up in four parts. Let’s finish up with a review of The Other Sixty from 1988-89

June 18th, 1988

85. Will To Power – Say It’s Gonna Rain

This is the second single from the debut of Will To Power. I can’t tell what’s worse – naming yourself after a Nietzche book, their music, or both. Let’s take Door #3. This power center collapses at #49.

92. Paul Carrack – When You Walk In the Room

Paul had racked up two Top 40 hits when he released another single from his One Good Reason LP. This one is a cover of a Jackie DeShannon song that was a hit in 1964 by The Searchers. It will be a #2 Country hit for Pam Tillis in 1994. Featuring female vocals by Linda Taylor, this 45 will stop flat at #90. Oh, hey Paula.

93. Paula Abdul – Knocked Out

This is where the legend starts, with a debut release thrown on the Other Sixty pile. From choreographic Laker Girls cheers to Janet Jackson’s videos, Paula worked herself into an opportunity as a dance artist. The first two singles failed with this one, a Babyface/ L.A. Reid co-write just missing out at #41. 1989 was a whole different story. Oh, and hey Paul.

95. Scritti Politti Featuring Roger – Boom! There She Was

After playing Cupid & Psyche 85 to death, I was heavily anticipating Scritti’s new album. Only this was released I played the hell out of it as well. I was utterly obsessed. To this day though, I appreciate the previous album more because where that had edge and bite, Provision was smooth and light. It was almost too perfect for its own good. The collaboration with Roger Troutman on talkbox was a nice touch, but that may have scared away Pop radio. It will peak at #53 and chart on the R&B 100 at #94.

96. Teddy Pendergrass – Joy

After a turbulent start to the decade, Teddy took three years off after his emotional stage return during Live Aid and his Workin’ It Back LP in 1985. It would be a comeback worth waiting for as this jubilant song written by Reggie & Vincent Calloway would reach #1 on the Soul charts, his first in ten years. It will reach #77 on the Pop charts.

97. S-Express – Theme From S-Express

It took a while for the disco revival to happen here in the States. In the UK, it never went away, and that’s why we had this in 1988. This acid house track mixes in some Philly Soul, disco, and loads of samples a la Pump Up The Volume. The train crashed as it left the station and derailed at #91, kind of the S line shuttle in New York.

June 17th, 1989

82. Holly Johnson – Love Train

Another train, another derailment. This one, featuring a guitar solo by Brian May, is courtesy of the former Frankie Goes To Hollywood lead singer, who always looks like Neil Tennant’s brother. By the way, this is not an O’Jays cover, but it might as well have been. It was huge in England where they love him. Over here, we said don’t do it at #65.

96. Q-Feel – Dancing In Heaven (Orbital Bebop)

Here’s a song from a synthpop quartet that was released back in 1982. It bubbled under at #110.I’m assuming some radio programmer was trying to turn then into the next Sheriff. It could have worked if others got on board, but this single felt very out of step with current Pop radio and did a quick quick slow death at #75.

98. 10,000 Maniacs – Trouble Me

The pride of Jamestown, New York will have their biggest chart success with this single. That is until they decide to unplug their instruments in 1993. Until then, this cup of chamomile tea will settle in all the way up to #44.

Turn The Whole World Upside Down

tcy

The twenty-fourth chart week is churning more good stuff. Let’s review what debuted but faltered during 1985, 1986, and 1987.

June 15th, 1985

81. Patti LaBelle – Stir It Up

The Godmother of Soul releases her second single from the Beverly Hills Cop soundtrack after the success of New Attitude. This one almost (should have) followed it in the Top 40, but it did the old banana in the tailpipe trick at #41.

85. Jeff Beck featuring Rod Stewart – People Get Ready

One of the few artists to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame twice, Jeff only managed one Hot 100 entry as a solo performer. This single, a cover of the Impressions 1965 hit, features lead vocals by Rod Stewart, will take a train to #48.

87. Vitamin Z – Burning Flame

Here’s a New Wave trio that lets you know as much as they could that they were from England, from the pronunciation of their name (vitt-uh-mun zed) to the way they sang (every and was aaah-nd). The flame and our patience disappeared at #73.

Fun fact: Lead singer Geoff Barradale is the current manager for the band Arctic Monkeys

88. Sister Sledge – Frankie

The Sledges are back with half the chicness, meaning Nile Rodgers at the production helm minus Bernard Edwards. The retro-sounding girl group 45 garnered them their final Hot 100 entry peaking at #75. In the UK, it became their first and only #1 single. Go figure.

Fun fact: This song was written by Joy Denny, otherwise known as Denise Rich, who was married to Marc Rich, the man Clinton pardoned on his last day of office in 2001.

89. George Thorogood & The Destroyers – Willie And The Hand Jive

The pride of Wilmington, Deleware, shows up with his one and only Hot 100 entry. You would have thought it was Bad To The Bone for how much MTV played that song. Instead, it was a cover of the 1958 Johnny Otis Top 10, which Clapton had taken into the Top 40 in 1974. GT’s version would diddley up to #63.

June 21st, 1986

85. Queen – A Kind Of Magic

After performing in Webley Stadium at Live Aid in 1985, it seemed that Queen or mostly Freddie only wrote songs that would sound good in a stadium filled with tens of thousands of people. This will be the highest-charting US single between their last Top 40 hit, Radio Ga-Ga in 1984, and Freddie’s death in 1991. The magic fades away at #42.

93. Emerson, Lake & Powell – Touch And Go

ELP(almer) had broken up in 1979. When they Keith Emerson & Greg Lake looked to get the band back together, Carl Palmer was busy in another supergroup, Asia. So E & L found another drumming P(owell) as in Cozy. ELP was back with an album and this single, which should have been on the Top Gun soundtrack. (Decades later it was in MacGruber instead…same thing.) The 45 will stand down at #60.

95. Rene & Angela – You Don’t Have To Cry

This is the third charting single from Rene & Angela’s Street Called Desire, and their fourth Top 5 Soul hit. The tears start flowing at #75.

June 20th, 1987

83. Tom Kimmel – That’s Freedom

Here’s a dude who had written songs for Levon Helm and The Highwaymen and got a chance to show what he could do a solo artist. I am shocked this wasn’t a hit back then but even more surprised that no one politician has wrapped themselves around this America is #1 song like bacon around a t-bone steak. His only chart entry will peak at #64.

88. Jody Watley – Still A Thrill

Jody pulls a Ruth Pointer a la Automatic exercising her lower vocal range for something funky and sexy. The sparsely arranged track written by Jody and early Prince sideman, Andre Cymone, was one of four 45s in the 1987 debut group this week that I bought back then. (You’ll need to guess the other three.) I still love this song and have always been baffled by its #56 showing.

90. John Waite – These Times Are Hard For Lovers

After the 1985 hit, Every Step of The Way, John will never score another solo Top 40. Looks like he’ll need to form another band. It sounds like something Diane Warren would write, but it was co-written by Desmond Child, so close enough. Even though it received a lot of Rock radio airplay, times will get hard for lovers of this 45 at #53.

92. The Cure – Why Can’t I Be You?

What the hell got into the Cure? This is upbeat pop with horns. And it’s fun. This was the first single to their all-over-the-place double LP Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me, and my favorite of theirs. Why can’t it climb higher than #54? And why did Pop radio prefer Just Like Heaven?

93. Aretha Franklin – Rock-A-Lott

This is the fourth single from the Queen’s 1986 LP, Aretha. I’m not going to begrudge an icon like her, but I would like to know why someone wasted her talents on an empty dance song such as this? It will rock very little up to #82.

95. INXS & Jimmy Barnes – Good Times

In between Listen Like Thieves and Kick, INXS recorded a cover of this 1968 Easybeats songs for the Lost Boys soundtrack as a duet with fellow Aussie Jimmy Barnes. I loved this song so much back then, I forced a band I was in to cover it. I cringe at thinking how bad it must have sounded. These dudes however sounded energetic and raw. Unfortunately, the bad times began at #47.

 

The Red Alert Was Sounded

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I would say this is a robust set of debuts for 1983 and 1984 during the twenty-fourth chart week. Put another way, I would buy a K-tel collection if it had these songs on it, even if I had to muddle through a few of them. Let’s review.

June 18th, 1983

78. Louise Tucker – Midnight Blue

How do you break into pop music if you’re a classically trained vocalist? Well, one way is to rewrite an old Beethoven sonata and throw a pulsing synth on it. This laborious single actually made it up to #46, which definitely made someone roll over.

81. Thomas Dolby – Europa & The Pirate Twins

One of my favorite stories is the tale of Thomas Dolby being paid tons of money to play synths on Foreigner 4, then using that cash to record his own solo records such as She Blinded Me With Science. But he actually recorded this song first and released it in the UK just as Waiting For a Girl Like You was climbing the charts. This New Wave synth narrative was only released in the States after Science became a hit two years later. But Europa’s bodyguards pushed Thomas away at #67.

Fun fact: The harmonica solo is played by Andy Partridge of XTC.

84. Patrick Simmons – Don’t Make Me Do It

After the break-up of the Doobie Bros, Pat, one of its founders, decided to embark on a solo career. Hey, if Michael could do it, why couldn’t he? But where the former had his own distinct vocal style, Pat sounded like the Doobies. His entire album, Arcade, for the most part, sounded like the Brothers in 1977 just before they became superstars. But if this follow-up to his only Top 40 hit, So Wrong, sounds like another Bay Area act, that’s because it was written by Huey Lewis. It will climb to #75.

86. Jarreau – Boogie Down

Anybody know the thinking on Al referring to himself merely as Jarreau for his 1983 album and singles? This jazz-pop number has Stev Gadd laying down the rhythm and Bill Champlin and Richard PAge providing backing vocals. That’s right! The boogie goes down at #77.

88. Robert Palmer – You Are In My System

This is the second version of this song to chart in 1983. The System wrote and recorded the first one, which charted back in March during chart week nine and reached #64. Robert heard the song in a Parisian club just as he finished recording his album, Pride. He quickly flew home to add his cover to the album and released it as the first single. But the system gets shut down at #78. Good thing there will be better days ahead for both artists.

89. The Stompers – Never Tell An Angel (When Your Heart’s On Fire)

Here’s a four-man pop-rock group from Boston that has been around since the late 70s. The group lives up to its name with this Motown-flavored stomper orginally recorded on Boardwalk Records in 1981 but not released until 1983 due to the death of company president Neil Bogart. It will inch up one spot before flying off to heaven.

Adam Sandler is reportedly a fan of this group and included this song on the Grown Ups 2 soundtrack.

92. Mtume – Juicy Fruit

Now, this is a funky mellow groove. Radio played this so much back then in New York, I assumed it was a Top 40 hit. Even though it was #1 for eight weeks on the Soul charts and the single went gold, the fruit gets ripe at #45. Biggie sampled it to great effect on his track, Juicy, which was his first Top 40 hit.

95. Roman Holliday – Stand By

Named after the 1953 Audrey Hepburn, this septet from England lands their first Hot 100 entry mixing a bit of Swing into their New Wave pop. The track might sound money, but didn’t generate much of it, and stands in place at #54. It will be their highest-charting single.

June 16th, 1984

79. Survivor – The Moment Of Truth

The band tries for Eye Of The Tiger 2 with another dramatic song from a movie. This time it’s The Karate Kid. But Pop radio showed no mercy and swept the leg at #63. And the song we all remember from that film is this one anyway.

82. Genesis – Taking It All Too Hard

The English trio spin off their fourth single from their self-titled Top 10 album. Another from the divorce anthology, Phil the Shill tries to mansplain the proper feelings his partner should have during their breakup. This #50 ballad will have its edges smoothed off multiple times during the band’s career and end up sounding like this by 1992. In 1983

84. Tracey Ullman – Break-A-Way

Tracey follows up her one and only Top 40 hit with a roused-up cover of Irma’s Thomas 1964 single, co-written by Jackie DeShannon. The song stiffed at #70, but the Soul Queen of New Orleans continues to sing it live in her shows to date.

89. Jocelyn Brown – Somebody Else’s Guy

The vocalist behind disco hits such as In the Bush by Musique and Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Inner Life (damn, I love that version) stepped out on her own with this dance single that sounds a little too much like Taana Gardner’s Heartbeat. It will reach #2 on the Soul charts, but will only peak at #75.

90. Mötley Crüe – Too Young To Fall In Love

The crew that is motley keeps shouting at the devil, but the screams fall on deaf horns. It will peak at its debut.

91. Christopher Cross – A Chance For Heaven

In 1984 we hosted the Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. And because most Soviet countries boycotted us, we cleaned up at the metal stand. To celebrate this impending ass-kicking, we had Chris Cross record this totally 80s sounding pop song that we’d play every time we beat down another country. But once the games were over, this song faded like a Sarajevo bobsled track, hitting a #76 zenith. Nadia would have been proud.

94. Red Rider – Young Thing, Wild Dreams (Rock Me)

Canadian quartet Red Rider tallies up their second entry south of the border with a single from the fourth album, Breaking Curfew. The video received a little airplay on MTV, which helped it chart, but not enough to get it any higher than #71. Also, why did we prefer Loverboy to these guys?

Isn’t It The Truth We’re Going For?

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We are cruising into the twenty-fourth chart week of the year. Let’s see which debuts ended up as The Other Sixty during 1980-82.

June 14th, 1980

83. Stephanie Mills – Sweet Sensation

The first single from Miss Mills’ fourth album is the title track, a slice of disco funk written by James Mtume & Reggie Lucas. It will be a Top 3 hit on the R&B charts, but tingly feeling ends at #52 on the Pop charts. Her second single, Never Knew Love Like This Before, will be her biggest crossover smash.

85. Anne Murray – I’m Happy Just To Dance With You

After a big finish in the Top 40 at the end of the 70s, the wheels are grinding to a halt. Anne will have only two more Top 40 hits, none higher than #33. This single from her LP, Somebody’s Waiting, was their third charting Beatles cover. The dance will end at #64.

87. Gladys Knight and the Pips – Landlord

It’s been three years since Gladys & the Pips owned a piece of Hot 100 real estate. This will end up being their biggest success on the Pop charts during a thirteen-year span, and it still doesn’t make the Top 40. The rent is due for this funky midtempo ballad at #46.

89. Russ Ballard – On The Rebound

Here’s the former lead singer and guitarist for Argent with a single from his fourth solo album, Barnet Dogs. The man who wrote hits for others, such as Liar by Three Dog Night,  New York Groove by Ace Frehley and later, You Can Do Magic by America & I Know There’s Something Going On by Frida will score his only chart hit when this bounds once up to #58.

90. Billy Preston and Syreeta – One More Time For Love

These two scored a Top 5 hit earlier in the year with the lovely ballad, With You, I’m Born Again from the Fast Break soundtrack, a basketball movie starring Gabe Kaplan (don’t ask). They had recorded another duet for Syreeta’s upcoming LP, so when the former was successful, Motown released this as a follow-up. It wouldn’t be the last duet for the twosome as next year, they’ll release an entire album of them. But it will be the last one to chart as this climbs as high as #52.

93. La Flavour – Only The Lonely (Have a Reason To Be Sad) 

In between Wild Cherry & his stint with Donnie Iris, keyboardist Mark Avsec wrote and produced an album for this Canadian group. They had scored a Top 10 Disco hit earlier in the year with Mandalay. This was the only single that Pop radio was interested in, but barely. It’s a groove ballad that will inch up two spots before becoming very lonely, and thus, sad.

June 20th, 1981

79. Smokey Robinson – You Are Forever

Smokey keeps the lovefest going with another self-penned ballad as his follow-up to Being With You. This easily should have followed the former into the Top 40 but, for some reason, forever ends at #59.

81. Loverboy – The Kid Is Hot Tonite

I had to check to make sure this wasn’t a Top 40 entry because they played this so often back then. But this rocking follow-up to Turn Me Loose only burned it way up to #55 before being retired onto strip club soundtracks.

82. Dionne Warwick – Some Changes Are For Good

Who doesn’t want a 2-LP live album from Dionne Warwick, especially one that captures her performance at a Harrah’s casino in Reno, Nevada? That was Arista Records thinking in 1981, but they left side four open for a couple of new recordings, such as this one. This Michael Masser/ Carole Bayer Sager composition will peak at #65.

83. Randy Vanwarmer – Suzi Found A Weapon

Is this the same dude who recorded Just When I Needed You Most? Three albums in and Randy is leaning into a poppy New Wave sound, which most likely confused programmers, even though it’s a good song. It will only reach #52, but the Suzi that Randy wrote about will end up being his wife.

89. Blackfoot – Fly Away

Jacksonville, FL favorites, Blackfoot are back with their fifth album, Marauder. They served up another familiar helping of Southern rock with their first single, which almost became their third Top 40 hit. Instead, it was their last charting single as it hit #42 then flapped its wings in the wrong direction.

95. Terri Gibbs – Rich Man

I guess blind Country singers were a thing in the 80s. Or did a record exec pip up in a coked-out meeting once, “Where’s the female Ronnie Milsap?” Well, here she is, kind of, with the follow-up to her Top 20 smash, Somebody’s Knockin’. This sultry number sheds most of the Country flavor with some funky soul and should have been another big hit for her. It goes broke at #89.

June 19th, 1982

83. Deodato – Happy Hour

Eumir Deodato was a Brazilian fusion performer that, by the end of the 70s, was best known for his arrangement of Also Sprach Zarathrustra. Then Kool & the Gang hired him as a producer and scored eight Top 40 hits with him at the helm. All the while, he continued to release solo albums with his familiar Rhodes sound. In 1982 he released the LP, Happy Hour, and the title track as its opening single. This pop-disco 45 sounds like a Kool clone, very reminiscent of Steppin’ Out, but all the same should have easily brought him into the Top 40. Instead, his first Hot 100 entry in six years moved the drinks to full price at #70.

Fun fact: Deodato’s daughter, Kennya is married to Stephen Baldwin. Steven’s daughter and Deodato’s granddaughter is married to…Justin Bieber. From Also Sprach to Sorry in two moves. That must make for a fun Thanksgiving.

88. Frankie Miller – To Dream The Dream

We already had Bob Seger and Rod Stewart, so I’m not sure if anyone wanted to listen to a mix of those two voices. That’s what Scottish singer’s Frankie’s music sounds like, but in all fairness, those artists I mentioned were big fans of his. Shoot, maybe they stole a little from him. His last chart hit from the album,  Against The Wind  I mean, A Night On the Town, I’m sorry, it’s from an LP called Standing On the Edge, which seems to be out of print, will hit the REM cycle at #62.

89. Scorpions – No One Like You

Is this a song that means you’re the only one? Or is it a grammatically incorrect putdown? It’s hard to tell sometimes from these German hard rockers ever since they rhymed hurricane and am. Their first chart single from their eighth album, Blackout, vill ride up to ze number 65.

Should We Talk About The Government?

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We’re pulling up the rear of the decade, 1987 to 1989, to be exact, as we review The Other Sixty from chart week twenty-three.

June 13th, 1987

82. Cyndi Lauper – Boy Blue

The fourth single release from Cyndi’s True Colors LP was a song she co-wrote about a friend who had recently died from AIDS. Proceeds from the single were donated to various AIDS organizations. It’s a shame it didn’t climb higher than #71.

89. Bruce Willis – Under The Boardwalk

When ego and coke enter a room, this is what walks out of it. Talk a knee, Bruce. Take a long knee and bow your head. His destruction of this Drifters classic somehow rose as high as #59.

90. Poison – I Want Action

I thought for sure that the inaction of this single would render these clowns a one-hit-wonder glam trash act when it hit #50. Thirty-plus years later, they’re still laughing their way to the bank.

91. 4 By Four – Want You For My Girlfriend

Here’s the Queens, NY quartet, 4 By Four (which sounds more like a Country group) trying to get some of that New Edition money with a light funk-pop selection that peaked at #79. This track and another made the R&B Top 10, but this foursome never recorded a follow-up.

92. Whitesnake – Still of The Night

Whitesnake had been around for almost a decade with not much to show for it. This was the first single from their seventh album, which was their second chart entry. It went still at #79. Their next single was Here I Go Again, which went all the way to #1.

95. Patty Smyth – Downtown Train

Two years before Rod Stewart’s Top 10 cover, the ex-lead singer of Scandal tried her hand at this Tom Waits song, featuring David Sanborn on the sax solo. It is debuting at its peak.

97. K.T.P. – Certain Things Are Likely

The band Kissing The Pink didn’t have much luck under that name (wonder why?), so they changed it to the initials instead. New name, same results, as it debuts at its peak, but became a big dance hit in the clubs. It was also a CD cut-out favorite in record stores, so I picked up a copy, and it’s better than advertised.

June 11th, 1988

86. Ice-T – Colors

Here’s a debut twosome for the ages. First, the West Coast rapper and grandparent favorite on Law & Order gets his first chart single with the title song to the Sean Penn/ Robert Duvall film, Colors. It will rise to #70.

90. Tiffany – Feelings Of Forever

And now we have shopping mall mascot, Tiffany with the fourth release from her debut, a song that shamefully rips off Bryan Adams’ Heaven. Thankfully forever ended at #50.

June 10th, 1989

93. R.E.M. – Pop Song 89

This was the third single from R.E.M.’s album, Green, mostly notable for its video of three topless women and a shirtless Michael Stipe all dancing with censor blocks on their chest. I couldn’t wait for this LP to come out and played the hell out of that cassette during the Fall of 88/89. I thought for sure this would be as big as Stand, but it only had a #86 showing.

99. Skid Row – Youth Gone Wild

Sebastian Bach (no relation to anyone talented) and his boys take advantage of metal’s MTV dominance with the first single from their debut. It will rise no higher than where it is now.

 

We Knew It Wasn’t Right

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Let’s move through another group of debuts on the Hot 100 during the twenty-third chart week during 1984 up to 1986. There’s a handful of icons and a whole lot of The Other Sixty.

June 9th, 1984

78. Jenny Burton & Patrick Jude – Strangers In A Strange World

I’m not sure who thought it was a good idea to release this vanilla ballad as the theme to a break dancing movie. They got what they deserved when it locked up at #54.

82. Def Leppard – Bringin’ On The Heartbreak

After Def Lep broke out in 1983 with three Top 40 singles from Pyromania, their record company thought it was a good idea to re-release their first two albums as well as this rock ballad, originally on High N Dry. Remixed and peppered with extra synths, this flamed out at #61. But in three years we would all face Hysteria. Mariah Carey recorded a cover of this song for her 2002 album Charmbracelet.

87. Human League – The Lebanon

This British synth outfit followed up their successful album, Dare, with an EP called Fascination! which yielded two Top 40 hits. Their next full-length album was called Hysteria (where did I just hear that?) and produced only chart single, although its definitely my favorite of theirs. Maybe folks were thrown off by the use of guitars, but this 45 crumbled at #64. Louise & Life On Your Own were both Top 20 hits in the UK but did not chart or bubble under in the States.

89. Teddy Pendergrass & Whitney Houston – Hold Me

Almost a full year before her debut, Whitney holds her own with former Blue Note, Teddy P., on a ballad that will go Top 10 AC & Soul. You may have heard it as you waited in line to pick up your Alprazolam at Rite Aid, but it only climbed to #46.

June 8th, 1985

85. Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers – Make It Better (Forget About Me)

Tom and his crew get as funky as they’re gonna be, paying homage to old Stax classics with this tune from his Southern Accents LP, co-written & produced with Dave Stewart from Eurythmics. They even got Molly Duncan from the Average White Band to play sax on this. Unfortunately, the single dropped all of its pieces at #54.

90. Jermaine Jackson – (Closest Thing To) Perfect

Poor Jermaine. He gets an assignment to do the lead theme for a movie, and it’s this Travolta flop. The song barely has any Physical charm, sounding more like a smarmy ad for perverts to join a gym and stare at women in leotards. Once it hits #67, it’s time for a cooldown.

91. Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers – Real Love

Country music in the Summer of 1985 was relegated to the Opry and downtown Nashville. Even these two icons couldn’t muster any pop fanaticism for another duet. It’ll be yet another Country #1 for those two but will debut at its peak on the Hot 100.

June 14th, 1986

83. John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band – Voice Of America’s Sons

The Sly Stallone flick, Cobra, has two songs from the soundtrack debuting this week. This one’s from the pride of Rhode Island, who knows a thing or two about songs in movies, even though this was recorded for their 1985 album, Tough All Over. You can only xerox Springsteen so many times before you see through it. We did, at #62.

84. New Edition – With You All The Way

No wonder Bobby Brown left the group after this album. The quintet was traveling down a whitewashed bubble gum path rather than playing to their hip-hop & R&B strengths. This ballad lost me, and I didn’t come back until they added Johnny Gill. It loses its way at #51.

89. David Foster & Olivia Newton-John – The Best Of Me

I don’t think anyone will accuse David Foster of being humble. Yes, he has a lot of successful credits to his name. Singing is not one of them. I don’t know why he would re-record this track as a duet with ONJ, except for hubris. It’s obvious she’s slowing down to try to stay with him, like those Garth & Kat skits on Weekend Update. The best, in this case, was a #80 zenith.

90. Stevie Wonder – Land Of La-La

This was the fourth single from Stevie’s In Square Circle album, so I get why it might not click with radio. But come on, an #86 peak? It’s Stevie. Are you saying the song above deserved to be six spots higher?

92. Jean Beauvoir – Feel The Heat

Here’s the second song from the Cobra soundtrack from the former Plasmatics guitarist, Jean Beauvoir. I bought this 45 when I heard it, and it was also featured on his first solo album, Drums Along The Mohawk, of which he had a sweet one. My prediction of a hit fell short when the 45 burned out at #73.

Fun fact: Jean co-wrote a few songs with Paul Stanley on Kiss’ 1985 album, Asylum, and even plays bass on two of them. Don’t tell Gene.

96. Midnight Star – Headlines

Here’s another choice slab of dance funk from Midnight Star, which will make the R&B Top 10 but would crash and burn at pop radio, this track specifically, at #69. Reggie & Vincent Calloway left the group after this album, produced a few hits, and created I Wanna Be Rich for themselves in 1990.

Minor Desires Turned To Major Needs

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We’re up to the twenty-third chart week of the year. Let’s review which debuts didn’t make it into the Top 40 during 1980 up to 1983, or as well call them, The Other Sixty.

June 7th, 1980

80. Utopia – The Very Last Time

The Todd Rundgren-led quartet follows up their one and only Top 40 hit, Set Me Free with this blast of pop-rock that will only move up four notches. Utopia will put out a second album later in the year, a tribute/parody to the Beatles called Deface The Music.

82. Player – It’s For You

Player was crushing it in 1978 with three Top 40 hits, including the monster smash, Baby Come Back. Two years later and three albums in, pop radio seemed to lose interest in them. It’s not that songs weren’t any good, and West Coast music was hot during this time.  This single only reached #46, and if you asked me, they might have had better luck with Givin’ It All or Who Do You Think You Are?.

83. Crystal Gayle – The Blue Side

Is this a sequel to Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue? Or just a request from the record company to try and replicate its success? This Top 10 Country hit will scoot up two spots before turning brown.

86. The Jags – Back Of My Hand (I’ve Got Your Number) 

Here’s an excellent Power Pop tune from the UK that sounds like Elvis Costello meets the Easybeats. It went Top 20 across the pond, but in the States, it stiffed at #84.

88. Fleetwood Mac – Sisters Of The Moon

This was the fourth single released from F-Mac’s 1979 double LP, Tusk. Written by Stevie Nicks, it’s another underrated gem on an album that many were disappointed by at the time. I wish this would get played on the radio rather than Rhiannon for the millionth time. The moon will go new at #86.

91. Triumph – I Can Survive

From their fourth album, Progressions of Power, here’s the Canadian hard rock trio trying to get some more of those US dollars after their 1979 breakthrough. Alas, this track will not survive as it debuts at its peak.

June 13th, 1981

81. James Taylor – Hard Times

Nothing like a white hippie singing a smooth, soft pop tune about “hard times.” I’m sure life was a treat for a hungry woman dealing with an angry man. And as if to be even more tone-deaf, PBS including this song in a documentary called Freedom: A History of US, a story of how people lived, sacrificed, and died for freedom. Wonder who PBS’ demographic is? Also, I’m guessing that James lost his hit when it only chain ganged itself up to #72.

85. The Producers – What She Does To Me (The Diana Song)

No Springtime for Hitler here. This is the Power Pop quartet from Atlanta, GA, who recorded three fabulous albums. This single is from their debut and only climbed to #61, though it should have received more airplay. Their follow-up, What’s She Got? is superb as well.

Fun fact: Bass player Kyle Henderson lives in Madison, WI, and plays in a band called Blue-Eyed Soul, but occasionally there are Producers reunions up there.

86. Eric Clapton and His Band – Another Ticket

Eric Clapton is a racist asshole. He’s so racist that a movement called Rock Against Racism was ignited because of him. It also took him over thirty years to make a lazy, half-hearted apology about his remarks in 1976. We don’t need him. There are other musicians out there we can enjoy instead. He can take his slow hand and fuck himself with it.

June 12th, 1982

82. Olivia Newton-John – Landslide

If you didn’t own a leotard and leg warmers in 1980, you probably did after hearing Physical for the billionth time in 1981. The album is a well-produced and performed collection of West Coast Pop. Liv actually recorded a video album companion for each song on the LP. This was the third single, written of course by John Farrar, but it was blocked by falling rocks at #52.

87. The Reddings – (Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay

This trio was formed by Otis’ two sons, Dexter and Otis III, and their cousin Mark Lockett. They were creating their own stew of soulful funk and waited until album number three to give their dad’s swansong a try. It’s not bad and definitely beats out Bolton’s vocal shredfest during the late 80s. This version will whistle its way up to #55.

88. Oak Ridge Boys – So Fine

What a sad ass rip-off of Elvira. All that’s missing is the papa-oom papa-mow-mows. This deserves a lower showing than its high of #76. Even Country radio, which runs on automatic kept this one at #22.

89. Dr. Hook – Loveline

Everything this band touches has a soft layer of sleaze on it. I mean it as a compliment. I mean, this was their producer. It’s the second single from Players In The Dark (see?) and was co-written by Eddie Rabbitt. I’m sure if this song was more widely available, it would make many yacht rock playlists. This song will be the last chart hit after a ten-year run when it peaks at #60.

June 11th, 1983

87. Goanna – Solid Rock

If you get your impression of Australia from the song Down Under, you need to listen to this. Formed in the late 70s and named after a carnivorous lizard, this band crossed the oceans with this plea of indigenous land rights for the Aboriginals. This #3 Aussie smash will reach #71 in the States.

89. Joe Walsh – Space Age Whiz Kids

Can you believe people were intimidated by video games and the popularity of arcades? If you were afraid that Pac-Man was going to replace your Elton John Pinball Wizard machine or push all pool tables into the nearest dumpster, then you’re paranoid, an idiot or Joe Walsh. This was his last chart hit when Donkey Kong threw a barrel at it at #52.