Welcome to a brand new week of Top-40 music! This week, we will Return to 1983. By this time, ’80s music had finally found it’s footing, and escaped from the disco sound, and established the classic ’80s sound. More people than ever were finally getting cable television – hence they were getting their MTV. There were still some artists that still had not embraced the video format yet. But those who did, rose to the top, as you will see.
First thing’s first though. Let’s start with songs 40-31. A lot of the songs on today’s list are Easy Listening tunes. If you’re into that music, you will love this list. If you’re not into that music, there are still some great rock and pop songs here as well. Now, let’s Return to the week ending April 16, 1983, and begin the countdown.
40. “So Wrong” by Patrick Simmons
We’ll start off with a song I had never heard of by an artist I had never heard of. But, I am very familiar with a lot of his music. Patrick Simmons was an original member of the Doobie Brothers. He had been the band’s only consistent member throughout the band’s history. In 1982, Simmons decided to leave the group and go solo. So the band broke up for a while. This song isn’t a bad way to start the countdown. I much prefer him with the Doobies, but this one is OK.
39. “Straight From the Heart” by Bryan Adams
This is the song that put Bryan Adams on the map. It was the first single released from his Cuts Like a Knife album, and it was his first song to make the Billboard Hot 100, reaching all the way to #10. This is a nice ballad, and one of my favorite songs by Bryan Adams.
38. “Flashdance…What a Feeling” by Irene Cara
Ladies, break out the leg warmers! This was the theme song for the 1983 movie Flashdance, and was Irene Cara’s only #1 song. This song would also win the Academy Award for Best Original Song, and the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song in 1984.
37. “My Love” by Lionel Richie
This is a great ballad by Lionel Richie. It was the third song released off of Richie’s self-titled debut solo album. And if the backing harmony vocals sound familiar, that is Kenny Rogers that you hear.
36. “All Right” by Christopher Cross
When I first saw this song on the list, I was a little surprised because I thought the only hits Christopher Cross had were from his self-titled 1979 album and the Theme from Arthur. But I remembered this song as soon as I heard it. I like this song.
In the early ’60s, when the Beatles arrived, a lot of artists disappeared. In the early ’90s, when Nirvana and grunge arrived, a lot of artists (that I loved) disappeared. And in the early ’80s, when MTV arrived, a lot of artists disappeared, including Christopher Cross (Billy Squier also comes to mind). It’s too bad because he’s really talented.
35. “Rio” by Duran Duran
Here is a band that took full advantage of the music video format, which helped them become one of the biggest bands of the ’80s. This was the fourth and final single released from Duran Duran’s album of the same name. This song became an instant Top 10 hit in the U.K. in 1982. It took a little longer in the U.S. That is until “Hungry Like the Wolf” blew up on MTV. Then the radio programmers began to pay closer attention to what the band was putting out. This is just a flat-out classic ’80s song (and video).
34. “Some Kind of Friend” by Barry Manilow
My parents liked Barry Manilow, so I grew up listening to his music until I started getting my own music. However, I had never heard of this song. It’s actually not bad. It has more of an ’80s pop feel than his Easy Listening songs. I probably would not have liked it too much when it first came out, but I kind of like it now.
33. “Welcome to Heartlight” by Kenny Loggins
A non-soundtrack song by Kenny Loggins. This was from Kenny’s 1982 concept album, High Adventure. I like this song. The guitar and vocals in the verses remind me of the Bee Gees pre-disco music.
32. “Photograph” by Def Leppard
Def Leppard’s first two albums, On Through the Night and High ‘n’ Dry, were great. But their Pyromania album took the world by storm. This was the lead single from that album. What a great, classic rock song!
31. “I Like It” by DeBarge
And we have arrived at the last song of the day. I had never heard of this song. This is another one that I actually like. The beginning of the song kind of reminds me of late-70s Chicago. This is a really good Motown song.
Are you liking this countdown so far? Well, the best is yet to come. This is going to be a great week of music!Follow @returntothe80s