Top 40 Songs This Week – May 28, 1983: Songs 40-31

Hi Everybody! We are long overdue for a new Top 40 Countdown. I am so excited for the NEW STAR WARS MOVIE, The Force Awakens, which will be released in a few weeks. New freakin’ Star Wars! As we count down the days of the release, I figure we can count down the top 40 hits from the week that the last Star Wars movie, of the original trilogy, was released. Return of the Jedi was released on May 25, 1983. This is going to be an incredible week of music. I snuck a peek at the list of songs, and I will go out on a limb and say that this may be the best Top 40 we’ve covered so far! So let’s get to it, and Return to the week ending May 28, 1983, and begin the countdown! And as with most of the music posts, you can click on the song title to listen to the song/watch the video.

40. “Our House” by Madness

This song totally brings me back to the early ’80s. It was in heavy rotation in the early days of MTV when we first got cable TV in “our house” (on the corner – not in the middle of our street). This was the lead single off of Madness’ fourth studio album, The Rise & Fall. It would be their biggest hit in the U.S., reaching up to #7.

39. “Looking For a Stranger” by Pat Benatar

The Queen of Rock is back in the countdown once again, with a little known hit. This song is off of Benatar’s Get Nervous album, which also had the hits “Shadows of the Night” and “Little Too Late“. “Looking for a Stranger” is a fun little rock song, which would fit in well for Robert’s new “Obscure hits” series if he covers Pat Benatar. She has a lot of hits that get a lot of airplay, but this is one does not get as much attention.

38. “All My Life” by Kenny Rogers

Not too many people were as big a star as Kenny Rogers in the late ’70s/early ’80s. This is another obscure hit that I love. My parents owned the We’ve Got Tonight album, which this song came off of. If I was in the mood for a good ballad, I would throw this album on the record player.

37. “Come Dancing” by The Kinks

This is another classic ’80s song that got heavy airplay in the early days of MTV. At the time it was released, I didn’t care for the song too much. But, since it was on MTV, my eyes were glued to the TV watching this video anyway. I do appreciate it a little more now. This song was also my introduction to The Kinks.

36. “No Time For Talk” by Christopher Cross

Before I started doing these countdowns, the only Christopher Cross songs I knew were all the songs from his legendary debut album as well as “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do)“. But, he did have quite a few other hit songs, although I don’t believe many of them hit the top 10. This is a very good song I had not heard before. The very beginning reminds me of something that would be on a mid-’80s Sylvester Stallone movie soundtrack, until Cross starts singing. Then it is classic Christopher Cross (which is a good thing).

35. “All This Love” by DeBarge

The only song I thought I knew by DeBarge was “Rhythm of the Night” and El Debarge’s “Who’s Johnny“. But, I remembered this song as soon as it started. I didn’t know it was DeBarge. This is an outstanding R&B ballad.

34. “That’s Love” by Jim Capaldi

This was the biggest U.S. hit by British singer/songwriter Jim Capaldi, topping out at #28. That sounds about right. This song is ok. It’s not horrible, but not great either. Steve Winwood keyboards kick in in the second half of the song, which is cool. But, if I want to hear that, I may as well throw on some Steve Winwood.

33. “The Woman in You” by The Bee Gees

I love the Bee Gees! This is a pretty good upbeat song. In the ’80s, the Bee Gees did not perform too many songs. They mainly wrote hits for other singers. But, they did record this song for the movie Staying Alive, the sequel to Saturday Night Fever. Staying Alive was one of those movies where the soundtrack was way better than the movie itself.

32. “We Two” by The Little River Band

I enjoy a lot of songs by The Little River Band. This is a good one from the John Farnham years as lead singer. This song was from their seventh studio album, The Net. It topped out at #22 in the U.S. If you want to hear an outstanding John Farham solo tune, check out “You’re the Voice“.

31. “Mr. Roboto” by Styx

This huge iconic Styx hit was the beginning of the end of the band’s initial run. Styx was changing musical direction, which caused a divide in the band. I still really enjoy this song to this day. And it’s a great place to finish today’s list of songs.

Well, that wraps it up for today. Are you liking this so far? It’s just going to keep on getting better. Is anybody else looking forward to The Force Awakens? I’m one of the rare original Star Wars fans that never hopped on the prequel-hate bandwagon. I love the prequels! But, they tell a different story and have a different style. I have a feeling that JJ Abrams is going to capture the same spirit as the original. And it doesn’t hurt that the main characters, that we grew up with, are returning.
So, let’s talk Star Wars and music. And we’ll be back to continue the countdown tomorrow.

Deep Tracks: a-ha – The Sun Always Shines on T.V.

Hi Everybody! Our special guest writer, Robert Mishou, has come up with an awesome new series that I am so excited about. We’ll call it Deep Tracks. Today’s song happens to be my a-ha tune. We’ll let Robert describe the premise of this new series. But first, I would like to give a shout-out to my very good friends Mario and Sean from 2 Friends Talking, who just published an interview they had with Robert. Please check it out and show them some love.

What you see here is the first installment of a new series. There are so many great songs in the ‘80s – so many hits that we all know and love, but too many of us are missing some awesome tunes that were minor hits or not even released as singles. Hence my series. I am going to take a look at songs by artists that did not hit the American Top 10. Album cuts, minor hits, and unreleased songs are all tunes that could make an appearance here. One artists in a week – five songs – one per day.

The first artist is a-ha (you never capitalize the band’s name!).

Everyone reading this right now knows a-ha’s #1 hit “Take On Me.” Just as many are picturing that amazing video right now. I will confess to being a HUGE a-ha fan – so much so I even saw them in concert November 7, 1986, at the Frankfurt Festhalle. Remember, I grew up in Germany (1981-1987), and this band has been enormously successful across the European continent. In the U.S. they are definitely one hit wonders; in Europe they are one of the biggest musical acts to come out of the ‘80s, amassing twenty top 40 hits; they were able to extend their careers well into the 2000s. I love their albums (in the ‘80s: Hunting High and Low, Scoundrel Days, Stay on These Roads) and would like to give you five songs that are essential listening for a-ha in the ‘80s.

The Sun Always Shines on T.V. (1985)

This song was the second release from a-ha’s first album Hunting High and Low. While it is true that I got hooked on a-ha with “Take On Me”, I like this song way better. It did reach #20 on the AT 40, but was a top 5 hit in Germany, Holland, Ireland, and England. Back when I owned this on cassette, this was the first song on side 2 – many were the times that I listened to the album beginning on side 2 – that is how much I like this song. The songs begins with with calmly paced keyboards and Morten Hartek’s high pitched, haunting vocals, “Touch me, how can it be / Believe me, the sun always shine on TV / Hold me, close to your heart / Touch me, give all your love to me / To me.” . . . then the song kicks in with an admirable, harder than expected, rhythm guitar. I really like this song because it shows a bit of diversity in the music (way more of this is coming). There is a strong keyboard presence, but the song is not completely dependant upon it like “Take On Me” is. a-ha is also able to achieve a much fuller sound with strings that are added later in the song. Lyrically, this song is a bit more intriguing than then their earlier mega hit. The first verse shows more depth than most would expect based on “Take on Me”; this one contains, “I reached inside myself and found / Nothing there to ease the / Pressure off my every worrying mind / All my powers waste away / I fear the crazed and lonely / Looks the mirror is sending me these days.” This song is an excellent place to bust through “Take On Me” and begin your exploration of a-ha in the ‘80s


Quote of the Day: Arthur



Arthur: Do you know what I’m going to do?

Hobson: No, I don’t.

Arthur: I’m going to take a bath.

Hobson: I’ll alert the media.

Arthur: [rises] Do you want to run my bath for me?

Hobson: That’s what I live for.

[Arthur exits]

Hobson: Perhaps you would like me to come in there and wash your dick for you, you little shit.

Remember That Song: 11/30/15

Can you name the artist and song:

There is nothin’ fair in this world
There is nothin’ safe in this world
And there’s nothin’ sure in this world

Last Song: “I Won’t Forget You” by Poison from Look What the Cat Dragged In (1986)

Great job Robert (@mishouenglish)!!!

Sometimes in my head
I can still see pictures of you
And I laugh to myself
When I think of all those crazy things that we used to do

Quote of the Day: Tarzan, the Ape Man

Parker: Jane, do you know what he wants? What this ape wants?
Jane: He’s not an ape!
Parker: He is an ape. He lives like an ape, he kills like an ape. But do you understand what he wants?
Jane: You know everything…
Parker: Well, this ape son of a bitch wants you.
Parker: I’m gonna catch that animal son of a bitch, Mr Holt!

Happy 59th Birthday to Bo Derek!!!

Remember That Song: 11/19/15

Hair’s to Friday!!!
Can you name the artist and song:

Sometimes in my head
I can still see pictures of you
And I laugh to myself
When I think of all those crazy things that we used to do

Last Song: “Master of Puppets” by Metallica from the album Master of Puppets (1986)

Taste me you will see
More is all you need
You’re dedicated to
How I’m killing you

Remember That Song: 11/17/15

Can you name the artist and song:

Taste me you will see
More is all you need
You’re dedicated to
How I’m killing you

Last Song: “One Night in Bangkok” by Murray Head from the album Chess (1984)

Great job Jim (@JimVilk) and Andy (@andytorah)!!!

The creme de la creme of the chess world
In a show with everything but Yul Brynner

Quote of the Day: Ruthless People

Sam Stone: What’s this phone call about?

Ken Kessler: We call to make you an offer. An offer you can’t refuse.

Sam Stone: Low?

Ken Kessler: Yeah, $10,000.

Sam Stone: Fat chance!

Ken Kessler: Mr. Stone, this is no joke! We’re desperate people! We…

Sam Stone: Time out! I believe this is a joke pal and you’re it! The last time we spoke you said my wife would be in the morgue if I didn’t pay. Well, I didn’t pay and just today I was at the morgue and she wasn’t there. You lied to me! You know what I think?

Ken Kessler: No.

Sam Stone: You got no nuts! What do I have to do? Put a gun in your hand, aim and pull your finger down you spineless wimp! I dare you to kill her!

[Sam hangs up]

Sam Stone: Now that oughta do it!

Happy 71st Birthday to Danny DeVito!!!

Remember That Song: 11/17/15

Can you name the artist and song:

The creme de la creme of the chess world
In a show with everything but Yul Brynner

Last Song: “Yah Mo B There” by James Ingram and Michael McDonald from It’s Your Night (1983)

Great job Jim (@JimVilk)!!!

Heavenly father watching us all
We take from each other and give nothing at all