Hi Everybody, welcome back to the Top 40 Countdown! If you missed yesterday’s list of songs, you can go ahead and check them out. Today should be interesting, as I only knew four of the songs before today. There is definitely one on here that I think just about everybody on the planet knows. So, let’s go into hyperspace this Star Wars week, take a trip in the way back machine, and Return to the week ending May 28, 1977, and continue the countdown.
We’ll begin today with an interesting song that I like. To me, the verses sound like an easy listening late ’70s/early ’80s song that you may hear on the soundtrack of a comedy-drama film. Then the chorus sounds like a country-crossover type of song. This song would be a huge hit, peaking all the way up at #5.
Here is another interesting song. This may sound really strange, but this sounds like a mashup of The Beatles and the Jackson 5. It starts off sounding like a Paul McCartney led Beatles tune. Then the rest of the family joins in singing, and it the style and sound kind of reminded me of the Jackson 5. I could see how this could have been a fun dance song back in the Disco era ’70s.
Oh man, I called that one! I just looked up information on the band. It is a The Sylvers were a band of 10 siblings (there was one family member that was not in the band). The lead singer, Edmund, was the voice of Marlon Jackson in the 1971-1973 Jackson 5ive cartoon series.
Since I have the heart of a rocker, this was always one of my favorite Eagles songs. I love the hard driving guitar, Don Henley’s vocals, and the song’s story, which is about the excessive lifestyle of a couple – which is perfect for the ’80s. So I suppose the theme was ahead of it’s time.
Here is another song that I had never heard before today. I had never heard of the Addrisi Brothers either, and they were somewhat local to me, as they came from my neighboring Winthrop, Massachusetts. When they were young, the two brothers, Don and Dick, were in their family’s acrobatic group, The Flying Addrisis. Then in the ’50s they got in touch with Lenny Bruce about starting a singing career and moved to California. They auditioned for the Mickey Mouse Club, but did not get in. They would go on to be songwriters. Their most successful song was “Never My Love” which was performed by The Association.
“Slow Dancin’ Don’t Turn Me On” isn’t bad, and isn’t great. It’s pretty much a song of its time.
Shalamar was a disco group created by Soul Train creator/producer Don Cornelius.
“Uptown Festival” was Shalamar’s first single. It is a medley of Motown hits set to disco music. Here is the song list for this part of the song, which would peak at #22:
“Going to a Go-Go” / “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)” / “Uptight (Everything’s Alright)” / “Stop! In the Name of Love” / “It’s the Same Old Song”
Next up is the classic rock radio staple by Bob Seger. This was the fourth single released from his Night Moves album, and would peak at #24. This is one of those songs that I don’t hate, but I really need to be in the mood for it to listen to it all the way through.
This is Jimmy Buffett’s signature hit, and the go-to song for anybody going on a tropical vacation. Not only does everybody know this song, but almost everybody probably knows all the lyrics. If I’m wrong about that, then it’s my own damn fault.
Holy Cliché, Batman! This song starts off with the “Whodunit” notes, reminding me of Inspector Gadget. Then, thankfully, the song turns into a very good R&B/Funk/Disco song. I really like this one. Hmmm. This could possibly be my new song pick of the day.
Alright! Another rock song! You know what Kiss’ problem is? They are just so subtle. Anyway, I usually prefer Paul’s songs to Gene’s. But this is one Gene Simmons song (along with “I Love It Loud“) that I absolutely love.
The Atlanta Rhythm Section is a southern rock band. They weren’t as popular as Lynyrd Skynyrd or The Allman Brothers, but they are pretty good (well at least this song anyway). This was their biggest hit, peaking at #7.
Well, that wraps up today’s list of songs. I enjoyed it. I hope you’re enjoying this trip back to the ’70s. We’ll be back to continue the countdown tomorrow.
Quint: [Quint first scratches the chalk board to get everyone’s attention] Y’all know me. Know how I earn a livin’. I’ll catch this bird for you, but it ain’t gonna be easy. Bad fish. Not like going down the pond chasin’ bluegills and tommycods. This shark, swallow you whole. Little shakin’, little tenderizin’, an’ down you go. And we gotta do it quick, that’ll bring back your tourists, put all your businesses on a payin’ basis. But it’s not gonna be pleasant. I value my neck a lot more than three thousand bucks, chief. I’ll find him for three, but I’ll catch him, and kill him, for ten. But you’ve gotta make up your minds. If you want to stay alive, then ante up. If you want to play it cheap, be on welfare the whole winter. I don’t want no volunteers, I don’t want no mates, there’s just too many captains on this island. $10,000 for me by myself. For that you get the head, the tail, the whole damn thing.
Might as well book end songs – this is the final track from Too Hot to Sleep and my favorite one from this album. There are so many things I like about this song. Lyrically, this song is very strong. It is a song about not just accepting a regretful action, but also dealing with it and growing from the experience. Here is the regret: “After all the hell I tasted / Years I wasted / Love that slipped away / Suddenly a vision shook me / I see the fool I’ve become content to play.” Admitting this sort of foolish behavior is difficult and it usually stops there. Here, though, learning and adapting takes place, “I will go to any length / To find the strength / To face the night alone / Standing on the edge of time / I cross the line / My heart becomes my own.” I did not say it way a happy conclusion- but their is some growth. The chorus of this song is powerful and Jamison sings sit with raw emotions. Speaking of emotions- how about that guitar. This song highlights one of Sullivan’s best performances on the album. Once that guitar kicks in it never stops, driving through the entire song. Rhythm guitar, solo guitar – all of it is just excellent! A strong ending to a strong album.
We covered the Top 40 countdown for the weekend that Return of the Jedi came out, and the weekend that The Empire Strikes Back came out. Now, Return to the ’80s is going back to a long, long time ago, in a galaxy…well right here, and counting down the Top 40 songs from the weekend that Star Wars was released. The movie was released on May 25, 1977. This countdown is from the week ending May 28, 1977. Far out, man! Us older ’80s kids will remember a lot of these songs. If I had to watch movies only from one decade that wasn’t the ’80s, I personally would choose the ’70s over the ’90s. This should be an interesting week. I think I’ve only heard of 16 songs out of the 40 – and 6 of them are in the top 10. So, let’s Return to the week ending May 28, 1977, and begin this countdown of groovy tunes.
Well, if you’re a Streisand fan, this is a great start to a countdown. I’m not a fan. I appreciate that she does have a beautiful voice. But, I can only take her in very small doses – as in a half a song at as time. This does sound like a typical late ’70s Babs. So, if you do like her, this is a very good song.
I had never heard this song before. I actually kind of like it. It has a timeless sound to it. It could have been released in the ’70s, ’80s, or even today if there was good music today. This was off of Natalie Cole’s third album, Unpredictable, it spent five weeks at #1 on the Hot Soul Singles chart and peaked at #5 on the Billboard Hot 100.
This song “Everybody Be Dancin'” by the rock group Starbuck, is neither a dance song nor a rock song. There’s a reason why I never heard this song before now…it’s not that good, but it’s not horrible either. And there is not really any mistaking for which decade this song came from.
It only took a few songs to get to one that I know. I really like this song a lot. It would be a #1 hit on this chart for three weeks, beginning July 30. Then The Emotions took over the top spot for four weeks with “Best of My Love“. Then in September, “I Just Want to Be Your Everything” jumped back in to the top spot. Andy is credited as being co-songwriter with his brother Barry. Andy said the following in the book The Bee Gees – Tales of the Brothers Gibb by Melinda Bilyeu, Hector Cook, and Andrew Hughes:
So, once we discussed it all and got the deal together, me and Barry locked ourselves in a bedroom and Barry just started writing. When Barry writes, it is very hard to collaborate with him, because he is so quick. And before I knew it he was starting to do the chorus of [‘I Just Want to Be Your Everything’], and I thought, ‘Wow what a hook!’. He’s an expert at his craft. Within about 20 minutes, he’d written a number one record; and then we went right into another one, [‘(Love Is) Thicker than Water‘]
This is the best song we’ve gotten to so far, which I had never heard before now. I think it has a funk rock sound. This was the biggest U.S. hit for John Miles. It would peak two spots further on this chart, at #34. However, it hit #2 on the Disco chart. Once again, there is no denying which decade this came from.
You know it. You love it. You may have run up the 72 stone steps leading to the entrance of the Philadelphia Museum of Art to it. But, wait. I thought Bill Conti did this song. Well, for the first time that I know of, the countdown is going to have the same song twice on the same countdown. Spoiler alert – You won’t hear Bill Conti’s version for a while. This version, by Maynard Ferguson is a jazz version of the song. Well, it sounds very much like the version you know, except this song has Maynard Ferguson playing some killer trumpet to give it more of a jazz sound than a disco sound.
Also known as (by me anyway) Hall & Oates do Disco. I had never heard this song before. It is the opening track of their album, Bigger Than Both of Us, which also contained the hit “Rich Girl“. This is not the classic Hall & Oates that we know. It does sound pretty good when Daryl Hall starts singing.
Growing up, before I started listening to my own music, there was a lot of Neil Diamond and Barry Manilow being played in my house. So, I am very familiar with this song. It’s a bit of a guilty pleasure for me. This is one of his better songs. It was a #1 hit on this chart and the adult contemporary chart. This song is a bit deceiving. From the title, it sounds like a couple has made it through a difficult time, and are happy together. But, no. They moved on with their lives separately, and thought they were happy, until they saw each other again.
Looks like we made it
Left each other on the way to another love
Looks like we made it
Or I thought so till today
Until you were there everywhere
And all I could taste was love the way we made it
This song was Dean Friedman’s only hit in the U.S., peaking at #26. This song sounds like a poor man’s Billy Joel tune. There is one interesting fact about this song. It generated controversy because the song refers to Ariel as a Jewish girl. The record label wanted him to get rid of the verse, that mentions her being Jewish, because they felt that radio stations would use that as an excuse to not play the song. Dean stayed strong, and kept the verse.
This is a nice ballad, that is without a doubt, from the ’70s. This actually sounds like something Andy Gibb would sing. Kenny Nolan was mainly known as a songwriter. You may have heard of a couple of his songs – Frankie Valli’s “My Eyes Adored You” and Patti Labelle’s “Lady Marmalade“. Not a bad way to end the list of songs today.
Well that wraps it up for today. Do any of you have memories from 1977? Unfortunately for me, I have a feeling that there are a lot of you reading this, who weren’t born yet. Let me know what you all think of this countdown so far.
With the new Star Wars coming out on Friday, I am feeling really nostalgic for the ’70s. So, all this week, just as we are doing for Remember That Song, the quotes are going to be from the ’70s.
Don Corleone: We have known each other many years, but this is the first time you’ve come to me for counsel or for help. I can’t remember the last time you invited me to your house for a cup of coffee, even though my wife is godmother to your only child. But let’s be frank here. You never wanted my friendship. And you feared to be in my debt.
Bonasera: I didn’t want to get into trouble.
Don Corleone: I understand. You found paradise in America. You had a good trade, you made a good living. The police protected you and there were courts of law. So you didn’t need a friend like me. Now you come and say “Don Corleone, give me justice.” But you don’t ask with respect. You don’t offer friendship. You don’t even think to call me “Godfather.” You come into my house on the day my daughter is to be married and you ask me to do murder – for money.
Bonasera: I ask you for justice.
Don Corleone: That is not justice. Your daughter is alive.
Bonasera: Let them suffer then as she suffers.
[the Don is silent]
Bonasera: How much shall I pay you?
[the Don turns away dismissively, but Bonasera stays on]
Don Corleone: Bonasera, Bonasera, what have I ever done to make you treat me so disrespectfully? If you’d come to me in friendship, this scum who ruined your daughter would be suffering this very day. And if by some chance an honest man like yourself made enemies they would become my enemies. And then, they would fear you.
Bonasera: Be my friend… Godfather.
[the Don at first shrugs, but upon hearing the title he lifts his hand, and a humbled Bonasera kisses the ring on it]
Don Corleone: Good.
[He places his hand around Bonasera in a paternal gesture]
Don Corleone: Some day, and that day may never come, I will call upon you to do a service for me. But until that day, consider this justice a gift on my daughter’s wedding day.
[a gratified Bonasera offers his thanks and leaves]
Don Corleone: [to Hagen] Give this job to Clemenza. I want reliable people, people who aren’t going to be carried away. I mean, we’re not murderers, in spite of what this undertaker thinks…
Hi Everybody! Even though it is ’70s Week on Return to the ’80s for Remember That Song and the Quote of the Day, we will still be getting some ’80s goodness this week. Robert is back with 5 more awesome Survivor tunes. Enjoy!
Guys, I couldn’t do it. I tried and failed. I cannot let Survivor go with just five songs, so they are back. This week I will give you five more great tracks by this awesome band that seldom make any sort of radio station. I will also include tracks from the two albums I did not use last week, Survivor (1980) and Too Hot to Sleep (1988). Here they are in the same format – one song for each day this week. Sit back, crank it up, and enjoy more of the sweet sounds of Survivor.
She’s a Star (1988)
This is the first track on the Too Hot to Sleep album and it totally sets the tone for the entire album. On this album, Survivor is returning to the their early days of driving rock. Now there is nothing wrong with any of the songs on Vital Signs or When Seconds Count, but this song, like most of the others on this album, really put rock at the forefront. This can be heard from Frankie Sullivan’s opening riff, a hard, powerful rhythm guitar that draws the listener into this excellent rock album. Last week I mentioned Sullivan’s expertise with the rhythm guitar, and that is clearly still in play, but do not miss the solo work on this song (or any of the songs on this album). The solo guitar does an excellent job of giving this song some teeth with some extra added at the end of the song. Lyrically, the song is about the desire (obsession?) for a young (“All of my friends have got a bet she hasn’t seen seventeen”) woman who is climbing her way up the celebrity ladder. Her star power is clearly recognized, “I’d just love to give her what she needs besides fortune and fame.” Despite this, there is a clear sense that she is chasing the rock and roll life, or at least a rock star, “Take me to the music / Out into the night / Drag me through the fire / Do it to me right.” This is an excellent start to a fantastic album.
Since the new Star Wars movie is coming out this Friday, all this week I would like to Return to the decade that brought us the original Star Wars – the 1970’s! All the songs, and each Quote of the Day will be from the ’70s this week.
Can you name the artist and song:
And I guess it’s just the woman in you
That brings out the man in me
I know I can’t help myself
Last Song: “Dr. Feelgood” by Mötley Crüe from the album Dr. Feelgood (1989)
Welcome back as we conclude this week’s countdown. If you missed the previous songs, you can go back and check out 40-31, 30-21, and 20-11. This has been an interesting week. There have been some great songs, and some I could have gone without listening to again. But, today is going to be the best of the bunch. So, let’s return to the week ending May 24, 1980, and check out the top 10 songs of the week.
What a way to start! In my opinion, this is one of the signature songs of the ’80s. The synthesizers and guitarmake the song instantly recognizable. Even though this song was technically released in 1979, this is a totally ’80s classic.
Christopher Cross began the decade and his career with his incredible self-titled debut album. This is one of the songs that helped make it so successful. This is one of my favorite songs by him. It doesn’t hurt that Michael McDonald is on here with the backing vocals. This is probably Christopher Cross’ most rockin’ song.
This is a really good song by Linda Ronstadt. I know the Eagles were her band early on in the ’70s. They were no longer with her at this point, and were actually on the verge of a breakup themselves around this time, but this song sounds a lot like the Eagles. This was a cover of a 1965 Top 10 hit by Little Anthony & The Imperials.
Here is a great guilty pleasure. If I post this song on Facebook, it gets a ton of hits, likes and comments. Ambrosia was a very good soft rock band of the late ’70s/early ’80s. They have nice music to chill too.
Now, let’s see what was topping some of the other charts this week. The rock chart was not in existence yet. And with all the soft rock and ballads on this countdown, there may not have been enough rock songs to have a top 40 list.
This is my pick of the day. I love this duet. Kenny Rogers and Kim Carnes sound so good together. This song was written by David Ellingson and Kim Carnes. They presented it to Kenny Rogers and he was going to do it as a duet with somebody else. But, Kenny said, “why don’t you and I do it?” It would become a #3 smash hit, and a #1 hit on the Country charts.
As we approach the #1 song, we have yet another classic ’80s song. There are some songs that really helped define the musical landscape of the decade, and this is one of them. On paper, you would think I would be sick of this song. But, I still love it so much! And I like the Pseudo Echo cover version of this song even more. That song has more of a rock edge than a disco sound, and still has that classic ’80s sound.
We have arrived at our #1 song. And we have another classic! This song was a #1 hit for 6 straight weeks. I don’t think I listened to the radio too much back then, but I do remember this getting played a lot. I love the guitar work in this song. And how can you not love Debbie Harry?!? I think this is a great way to end the countdown. In a ballad heavy countdown, we end with a rocker.
Well that wraps up this week’s countdown. I hope you enjoyed it. Man, oh man, The Force Awakens next week! To celebrate, we are going to countdown the biggest songs of the week that the original Star Wars opened. Yes, we are going to be rebels,and return to the week ending May 28, 1977. I am debating making it a ’70s week next week on Return to the ’80s.
So, let me know what you think of this week’s countdown, and let me know if you would like a ’70s theme for Remember That Song and the Quote of the Day. Until then, Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.