Welcome back to a brand new week of the Top 40 Countdown. I am looking forward to this one. This week we are returning to 1989. If you remember, I left for Navy Boot Camp on February 21, 1989. It lasted 8 weeks. In late April, I left Boot Camp in Great Lakes, Illionois after a nasty winter, then went to “A School” (which is training for the actual job you will be doing) in San Diego, California. When I go on the plane, everything was brown and dreary. The first thing I saw when I got off the plane was a palm tree outside the window, along with beautiful blue sky, and the most perfect weather I have ever seen!
In those 8 weeks I was in Boot Camp, there must have been many songs that came and went, which I did not know about. And this week in 1989, I had not caught up on all the recently released music yet. So, there are many songs on this week’s countdown that I never knew about. This week’s songs will either be new to me, or they will bring me back to a great part of my life.
Now, let’s Return to the week ending April 29, 1989, and begin the countdown.
40. “Birthday Suit” by Johnny Kemp
I didn’t know Johnny Kemp had any songs other than “Just Got Paid“. Well I wasn’t missing much with this song. “Birthday Suit” was performed by Johnny Kemp for the soundtrack of the movie Sing, which I also had never heard of. While the song isn’t horrible, I’m not going to rush and buy it anytime soon.
39. “I Only Wanna Be With You” by Samantha Fox
I was a huge Samantha Fox fan, so I knew this song. I like this one a lot. It is a remake of the Dusty Springfield 1963 hit. Samantha Fox was not the only one to cover this song. It was also done by The Bay City Rollers in 1976 and by The Tourists, a band which included Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart pre-Eurythmics, in 1979. This was the band’s first, and biggest hit.
Samantha did an awesome job covering this on her third studio album, I Wanna Have Some Fun.
38. “Orinoco Flow” by Enya
Here’s an awesome New Age song!! Sail away, sail away, sail zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
37. “Voices of Babylon” by The Outfield
I’m awake, I’m awake!! As I wipe drool from the side of my face after that unexpected nap, check out this pretty good Outfield song. I do like “Your Love” more, but I do like this song. I didn’t know about this song until I listened to their greatest hits compilation, Big Innings.
36. “Through the Storm” by Aretha Franklin & Elton John
This song had gotten by me. I really like this one a lot!! I don’t like a lot of Elton John’s ’80s music. There are some that I like, but overall, I prefer his ’70s music. And I’m not a big Aretha Franklin fan. But the two of them together made an awesome song!
35. “I Wanna Be the One” by Stevie B
I remembered this one! I May have heard it on the plane ride from Chicago to San Diego. This was Stevie B’s first American top-40 hit.
34. “Superwoman” by Karyn White
I had forgotten about this song. I was more familair with Karyn White’s hit “Secret Rendezvous“. This one isn’t bad.
33. “Where Are You Now” by Synch
I remembered this song when I saw the title. I would have never guessed the group’s name though. This is an interesting one. The band Synch was formed in the mid-80s. Lou Butwin was the lead singer. However, drummer Jimmy Harnen wrote “Where Are You Now”, and was afforded the chance to sing it. The song was released on an independent label in 1986. The song got some local airplay in the Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania market. The band was then signed by Columbia records. By the time their album was recorded, Jimmy Harnen and keyboardist Chuck Yarmey were the only remaining members of the original lineup.
“Where Are You Now” is a power ballad by the Pennsylvania-based 1980s band Synch. Co-written and sung by Synch band member Jimmy Harnen, the song was initially credited solely to ‘Synch’ when it was first released in 1986. In 1989, the song was re-released under the name ‘Jimmy Harnen with Synch’. “Where Are You Now” peaked at #77, and the band was dropped by Columbia.
However, in 1989, the song gained huge popularity and received heavy airplay, prompting record executives to re-release the original (major label) recording of the single, now credited to ‘Jimmy Harnen with Synch’. WTG, a new label at the time, signed Harnen as a solo artist, and while the song was climbing the charts, he began recording a full-length release for the label. This time, the song reached all the way up to #10 on the Billboard Hot 100, and #3 on the Adult Contemporary chart.
32. “You Got It” by Roy Orbison
I had thought that this song was an old Roy Orbison song that was re-released after he died. But this was off of his 1989 album Mystery Girl. Fellow Traveling Wilburys bandmates, Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne, co-wrote the song and played instruments on the record.
When I hear Roy Orbison now, I can’t help but think of the boss I had just before I joined the Navy. He was a huge Roy Orbison fan. When Orbison died, my boss was really depressed for a while. My dad was also a Roy Orbison fan, although he didn’t take his death as hard. So, I grew up listening to Roy Orbison, and I like his music. This is a good song.
31. “A Shoulder to Cry On” by Tommy Page
I didn’t know this song, and never heard of Tommy Page. This sounds like a “teen idol” song.
What do you think of this countdown so far? I didn’t think it was bad. It does look like this is going to get even better. Tomorrow’s 10 songs are going to be a lot of fun, so please come back!Follow @returntothe80s