As we enter chart week forty-six, there’s only a month and a half left in the year. Let’s dig in and review 1980 up through 1982.
November 15th, 1980
The Babys released five albums before calling it quits in the early 80s. This was the lead single from their last studio effort, On The Edge. Written by John Waite and Jonathan Cain, it will just miss the Casey call after an abrupt about-face at #42. Cain was probably already gone and a part of Journey during this release, getting ready to record the Escape album.
This UK quartet tried to get their first single selection right from their new album, Flying The Flag. This mellow pop-rock single almost did the trick but will stall out at #47. The second release, I Love You, will make it into the Top 15, becoming their second Top 40 single.
The second charting single from Chic’s Real People LP lists both the A & B-side. From what I gather, radio thought the A-side rocked too hard for Chic fans, and so some stations played the B-side because it grooved more like their other singles. Idiots. Maybe if they just played with the A-side, it would have done better than a #79 showing.
This was the third charting single from Pete’s Empty Glass album. Many thought it was a veiled attempt at Pete coming out. The truth about that has gotten muddled over the years, but I could care less. The song just rocks. Also, every time I hear it, I think of the Wayne’s World theme. It will only move three more spots.
The progeny of the late Otis Redding, Dexter and Otis III, got together in the late 70s to try a little funkiness with their pal Mark Lockett. They released their debut album in 1980, The Awakening, and this single became their biggest hit on the R&B charts peaking at #6. On the Hot 100, the power off button was hit at #89.
November 21st, 1981
Former King Crimson and Emerson, Lake & Palmer guitarist Greg Lake charts with his third and final entry on the Hot 100. This hilariously-titled ballad will be his best showing at Pop radio when it climbs to #48.
Lulu slows it down a tad with a laidback funky pop groove on her follow-up to I Could Never Miss You, which hit #18. It’s a cover of a Toby “My Angel Baby” Beau song, which they took up to #70 in 1980. She will do far better with it when it peaks at #44 in early 1982.
The Gambler had four chart hits from the Lionel Richie-produced album, Share Your Love. This was the only one not to make the Pop Top 15. Released in between Share Your Love With Me & Through The Years, this uptempo single will reach the Country Top 10 but will whoa, horsey at #66.
This kick-ass sitcom, which made me wanna be a DJ, about the hijinks at a mid-market radio station was already seven episodes into its fourth and final season when its theme song charted as a single. Produced by Buckner & Garcia, who would go on to get Pac-Man Fever, this single reached #65 on the Hot 100.
Fun Fact: Steve went on to re-record this theme song and customize it for many different real stations around the country. Also, I’ve always felt like the theme to Hello, Larry ripped this off, at least lyrically, but hey, he was a DJ too.
One more thing: the song that ended each WKRP episode is almost as good as the theme. Damn should have been the B-side.
This New York quartet led by former Blues Magoos singer Peppy Castro follows up their #22 hit, Breaking Away, with this tender ballad. It will swoon its way to #58 in early 1982 and become their final chart entry.
November 20th, 1982
George is back with the synth-heavy lead single from his Gone Troppo album, which was his least successful in his catalog. I’m not sure why Pop radio turned their backs on this one. After debut this high, it will only get to #53 before disappearing. George will take a five-year break after this release but will roar back strong.
Joni shifted out of her deep jazz period in the early 80s, starting with her Wild Things Run Fast album. Her cover of the Elvis classic, which was featured in Jailhouse Rock, was inspired by New Wave bands such as The Police and Talking Heads and became her best showing since on the Hot 100 since 1974’s Free Man In Paris. It will peak at #47, which isn’t a square number, but she didn’t give a rat’s ass.