Category Archives: Albums of the 80s

Albums of the ’80s: Aerosmith – Permanent Vacation

25 years ago, with the huge comeback album, Permanent Vacation, Aerosmith let the world know that they were back for good. The legendary band was a rock staple of the ’70s featuring hits such as “Dream On”, “Back in the Saddle”, and and “Sweet Emotion”.
Then in 1979, lead guitarist Joe Perry left the band to form The Joe Perry Project. Aerosmith’s 1979 album,
Night in the Ruts, quickly fell off the charts, and the band’s popularoty faded away. In the meantime, Steven Tyler’s drug abuse continued to get worse and worse, and affected their concerts, as he was prone to collapse on stage. There was another setback in 1980 as Tyler was involved in a motorcycle accident, and was sidelined until well into 1981. In 1981, rhythm guitarist Brad Whitford also left the band to record Whitford/St. Holmes with former Ted Nugent vocalist/guitarist Derek St. Holmes.

In 1984, Joe Perry and Brad Whitford saw Aerosmith perform at Boston’s Orpheum Theater. They hung out with Steven Tyler, and were inspired to re-join the band. The reunited band tried to come back, but drug abuse continued to hold them back. They released Done with Mirrors, in what they hoped would be a huge comeback album. But there was little interest, and there wasn’t a single hit off of that album.

Then in 1986, they finally got some attention when Tyler and Perry appeared on Run D.M.C.’s cover of “Walk This Way”. This song resurrected Aerosmith’s career by introducing the band’s music to a new (aka, “our”) generation. According to the band’s tell-all autobiography, Walk This Way: The Autobiography of Aerosmith, the band’s manager, Tim Collins pledged in September 1986 he could make Aerosmith the biggest band in the world by 1990 if they all completed drug rehab. So in 1986, Tyler completed a successful drug rehabilitation program, and the rest of the band did the same over the next couple of years. Because their attempt at a comeback album, Done with Mirrors, flopped, they knew the next album would be crucial to their careers. So they worked hard on the album, and at staying clean, and the result was a legendary album.

Permanent Vacation was released in 1987, and became a smash hit, eventually selling over 5 million copies. It was the first album where Aerosmith took advantage of MTV, and received heavy airplay. The three singles they released off of the album, “Rag Doll,” “Dude (Looks Like a Lady)” and “Angel”, all became major hit singles. Each one was a Top 20 hit. In addition to those hit songs, the rest of the songs on the album were also excellent.

With that, let’s Return to 1987, and go on a Permanent Vacation:

1. Heart’s Done Time

Welcome to the new and improved Aerosmith, proving that they are rockin’ better than ever!

2. Magic Touch

The first track rolled nicely into this one. OK, two awesome songs in a row! Proving that this comeback is no fluke.

3. Rag Doll

This was the third and final single released from the album. After the radio stations and MTV played the crap out of “Dude (Looks Like a Lady)” and “Angel”, this was a welcome change – until this got overplayed as well. The song peaked at #17 on the Billboard Hot 100, #12 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, and #42 on the UK charts. Years removed from the initial release, I’m back into this song.

4. Simoriah

5. Dude (Looks Like a Lady)

Aerosmith burst back on the scene and became relevant again when they released this song. Steven Tyler says in the book Walk This Way: The Autobiography of Aerosmith, “One day we met Mötley Crüe, and they’re all going, ‘Dude!’ Dude this and Dude that, everything was Dude. ‘Dude (Looks Like a Lady)’ came out of that session.”.

According to an interview with Vince Neil of Mötley Crüe done for Swedish television, the title of the song originated from a New York bar crawl where Steven Tyler and Vince Neil had drinks at a bar where the waiters were dressed in women’s clothes. This, according to Vince Neil, prompted Tyler to comment; “Dude looks like a lady!”.

“Dude (Looks Like a Lady)” reached #14 on the Billboard Hot 100, #41 on the Hot Dance Club Play chart, #4 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, and #45 on the UK Singles Chart in 1987, but was re-released in early 1990 and reached a new peak of 20.

6. St. John

Aerosmith is considered one of the best rock bands of all time. Like most of the great ones, Aerosmith have some Blues in them. This song definitely has a Bluesy feel to it:

7. Hangman Jury

This was always one of my favorite songs on the album. I listened to this one over and over:

8. Girl Keeps Coming Apart

9. Angel

Lift up your lighters! This power ballad was the most successful single on the album, peaking at #3. This was always popular for dedications at school dances.

10. Permanent Vacation

Pretty good title track. I love that you can hear a steel drum in this too. Steel drums always make vacations better!

11. I’m Down

Aerosmith did a great job covering The Beatles “Come Together”, so it was fitting that they did another Beatles cover. And they did an awesome job on this very underrated Beatles song.

12. The Movie

This is the only video that I could find for this song, that I could post. Pretty good instrumental.

Albums of the ’80s: Lionel Richie – Can’t Slow Down

After a successful run with The Commodores, Lionel Richie decided to go out on his own as a solo artist. His 1982 self-titled debut was very successful as he had hits with the ballads “Truly”, “You Are” and “My Love.” But, it was his 1983 follow-up album, Can’t Slow Down, that launched Lionel Richie into the stratosphere.

The album was released on October 11, 1983, and reached #1 on the Billboard album chart on December 3, 1983, where it stayed for three weeks. It also spent 59 consecutive weeks inside the Top 10 (including the entire year of 1984) and a total of 160 weeks (over three years) on the Billboard 200. After being the third best-selling album of 1984, it went on to win a Grammy Award for Album of the Year in 1985 and by 1986 the album had sold 15 million copies, eventually selling over 20 million.

One reason for this album’s success may be that not only did he include sure-fire hit ballads, but he also included uptempo songs, and dance hits. While Lionel Richie did have a successful run after Can’t Slow Down, he could not match the success of this classic album.

Can’t Slow Down only had 8 songs on the entire album. Out of the 8 songs, 5 were released as singles. And each of those 5 songs hit the top ten on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Two songs, “Hello” and “All Night Long (All Night)”, both went to #1. So let’s Return to 1983, and listen to Lionel Richie’s classic Can’t Slow Down album:

1. “Can’t Slow Down”

Unless you owned this album, the chances are pretty good that you never heard this title track. It’s not bad, but it would not have been a hit if it was released as a single. Let’s see if watching the beginning of this video brings back memories. And I’m not talking about the song itself. You’ll see what I mean…

2. “All Night Long (All Night)”

Perhaps this is Lionel Richie’s signature song. It combines the soul that he brought to the Commodores along with a little Carribean style. The result – a #1 smash hit. I owned the 45 of this song. Unlike my AC/DC Back in Black cassette that I supplied for our class dances in Junior High, my “All Night Long (All Night)” record actually got some airplay.

Here is the music video, which was produced by former Monkee Michael Nesmith:

3. “Penny Lover”

This ballad was the fifth and final single released from the album. As with all the other singles released from this album, “Penny Lover” was a top ten hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, spending two weeks at #8 in December 1984.

4. “Stuck on You”

This nice ballad was the fourth single released from the album, and peaked at #3. This song has kind of a Country Music feel to it. Richie is no stranger to the format, as he wrote the Kenny Rogers Smash hit, “Lady”.

5. “Love Will Find a Way”

I love the lyrics to this song. No matter how difficult life gets, and how challenging the changes you are going through are, love will find a way for you to make it through. However, the song itself is kind of boring for me. It’s not a ballad, and it’s definitely not an uptempo song. This is probably my least favorite song on the album.

6. “The Only One”

This is a nice song too. It has an early-80s Easy Listening sound to it.

7. “Running with the Night”

This is my personal favorite song from the album. It has more of a Rock feel to it than the other songs. And it doesn’t hurt that the guitar solo was played by Steve Lukather of Toto.

8. “Hello”

This #1 smash hit was the third single released from the album. It is best known for the video in which Lionel Richie is in love with a blind art student. Is she in love with him? She must be! She made a creepy-ass sculpture of his head! This was not one of my favorite songs. It was way overplayed at the time it was released. And as far as ballads go, I much preferred “Truly” from his last album.
However over time, I have grown to like it.

Albums of the ’80s: Journey – Departure

Join us for our departure into The 80s.

For today’s Album of the ’80s, we’ll Return to 1980. Journey’s Departure marked the end of an era. It was the last full time studio album appearance of founding member Gregg Rolie. For Journey novices, Gregg Rolie played keyboards, and was actually the full-time lead singer for Journey’s first few albums until Steve Perry arrived on the scene. Rolie selected his own replacement – Jonathan Cain, then of The Babys. Cain’s first album with the band was one you may have heard of – Escape. Most of us know most of the songs from Escape by heart, so we’ll focus on Departure today.

I did not get Departure when it first came out. But, it would be the first CD I ever owned. I don’t remember what I did yesterday, but I remember buying this CD at Ann & Hope. When you entered the record section, the CD’s were against the wall on the left-hand side. This was back in the day when the CD case was packaged inside a taller box. Remember those. Eventually, the industry decided to be more environmentally friendly, and did away with the boxes.

I love this album. The casual Journey listener may have only heard of one song on this album. You’ll know which one! But the rest of the album is also great. If you haven’t heard of these songs before, give them a listen.

1. Any Way You Want It

You know this song. It is one of the band’s signature songs, and they can’t do a concert without performing it. Fans of the movie Caddyshack also know this song. Rodney Dangerfield’s character blasted it on the golf course. My sister used to babysit a little toddler, and would bring her to the house. I remember when she was just learning to walk. I would throw this cd in the stereo. When “Any Way You Want It” started playing, the baby would walk around bopping her head up and down to the music really enjoying it. I wish we had a video camera back then! I wonder if I made her a lifelong Journey fan.

2. Walks Like a Lady

Are you ready for some blues? This song is different from the band’s music on later albums. Very cool song. Great keyboards, guitars and vocals

3. Someday Soon

Another awesome song. It is the last song that Gregg Rolie sang lead vocals on.

4. People and Places

Another different style song. This was always one of my favorite Journey songs.

5. Precious Time

Great rockin’ song. I love the way the guitar starts the song.

6. Where Were You

This song blew me away when I first heard it. This may be overshadowed by “Any Way You Want It”, but it rocks just as much. Here is a live version:

7. I’m Cryin’

Another bluesy sounding song. It did take me a few listens to really like it. But, I do like it alot now.

8. Line of Fire

Another rocker. They still play this live sometimes. Here is another live version:

9. Departure

This title track is just a quick little, 39 second, instrumental.

10. Good Morning Girl

This song goes hand-in-hand with the following song, “Stay Awhile”. These are the ballads of the album.

11. Stay Awhile

12. Homemade Love

Albums of the ’80s: Billy Joel – An Innocent Man

index Now let’s jump ahead to 1983 to rediscover Billy Joel’s classic album – An -Innocent Man.
For long-time readers, this article may look familiar. Other than a few edits here, this article was originally posted on October 28, 2010 (wow, time flies!) as part of the old ‘Album Listening Party’ series. But, I believe this will be new to many people. And for my Awesome long-time readers, can you really get enough of Billy Joel? I think not!

And who could go wrong listening to An Innocent Man? Out of the 10 songs on the album, 7 were released as singles. Three of them were top 10 hits on Billboard – “Tell Her About It” (#1), “Uptown Girl” (#3), and “An Innocent Man” (#10). The other hits were “The Longest Time” (#14), “Leave a Tender Moment Alone” (#27), “Keeping the Faith” (#18) and “This Night” (#78 in the U.K).

The album is a tribute to the music of Billy Joel’s childhood, and pays homage to several styles of music. The hits from this album were in heavy rotation on MTV.

Easy Money

This song did not play on the radio, but it is my favorite song of the album, and probably one of my favorite Billy Joel songs. It was featured in the Rodney Dangerfield movie of the same name. This song pays homage to James Brown’s style. You can really hear it with the screams and grunts. It is very energetic.

An Innocent Man

This song peaked at #10 on the Billboard charts, and actually reached #1 on the Billboard adult contemporary chart. This musical style is an homage to Ben E. King and The Drifters. Joel was quoted in a 1997 interview describing a high note he sang during the song: “I had a suspicion that was going to be the last time I was going to be able to hit those notes, so why not go out in a blaze of glory? That was the end of Billy’s high note.” I really like this song, and did not get sick of it like I did with a couple of other songs off this album.
Here is Billy Joel performing the song live at Wembley at the height of the Innocent Man era. And it is not lost on me that he already had somebody hitting the high notes for him. Still a great song:

The Longest Time

This would be my second favorite song from the album. This is obviously a doo-wop song. When the song was on, I would sing the low bass part, and make my brother and sister crack up. Billy Joel actually sings the lead vocals and all backing vocals. The song reached #14 on the Billboard charts, and like “An Innocent Man”, this song reached #1 on the Billboard adult contemporary chart.

This Night

This song was released as a single only in the UK and Japan, reached #78 on the UK Singles Chart chart and #88 on the Japanese Oricon Singles Chart. So you may not have heard this song in the U.S. unless you listened to the album. Like “The Longest Time”, it is also a doo-wop style song. Joel has said in interviews that “This Night” was written about his brief relationship with supermodel Elle Macpherson, whom he dated just prior to second wife Christie Brinkley. And for you Classical music afficionados, the chorus of this song uses the second movement of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Pathétique Sonata. Beethoven is credited as one of the song’s writers on the sleeve of the album as “L.V. Beethoven”.

Tell Her About It

This was the first single released off of the album. This song is an homage to the Motown Sound. It reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts for one week on September 24, 1983, replacing “Maniac” by Michael Sembello. At the end of the song in the video, comedian (and Easy Money star) Rodney Dangerfield is there preparing to go on “stage” thanking Joel for warming up the crowd.
This was a great single to lead off being released from the album. This is one of the songs I got sick of after a while. I’m liking it again now that time has passed.

Uptown Girl

This song was an homage to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. It reached #3 on the Billboard charts in the US,nd #1 in the UK, staying at that position for 5 weeks. It was also the second biggest selling single of 1983 in the United Kingdom behind only Culture Club’s “Karma Chameleon”, which Joel had knocked off the number one position on November 1, 1983. The song was originally written about his relationship with his girlfriend, supermodel Elle Macpherson, but ended up becoming about his soon-wife Christie Brinkley. And as anybody who was around in 1983 can tell you, Christie Brinkley also starred in the video. Joel and Brinkley married in 1985 and divorced in 1994. Apparently, the song was missing from the setlist during Joel’s 1994 “River of Dreams” tour. This was the other song that I got sick of hearing after a while. But I like it a little more again.

Careless Talk

This song was not released as a single. This is also a good song. It pays homage Sam Cooke. Very good vocals.

Christie Lee

This was another song that was not released as a single. Gee, I wonder who this song is named after! This style pays homage to Jerry Lee Lewis.

Leave a Tender Moment Alone

This song reached only twenty-seven on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 charts and spent two weeks at number one for two weeks on the Adult Contemporary chart. It pays homage to Marvin Gaye. To me, it also gives the feel of an old Stevie Wonder song. It’s a very nice song. I like it a lot.

Keeping the Faith

This song reached #19 on the main US Billboard Hot 100 chart and #3 on the US Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. It was the last song on the album. This song pays homage to Bob Marley. The lyrics sum up why Joel created this album with the sounds and style of 1950s and early 1960s rock and roll music, with lines like:

“If it seems like I’ve been lost in let’s remember” and
“Now I told you my reasons for the whole revival”

Albums of the ’80s – AC/DC Back in Black

Back in Black was the second album/cassette that I owned. Not too shabby. I believe my parents were in a music store, and they asked somebody “What are the kids listening to these days?” So many things went right for this whole situation. First of all, my parents were smart enough to know that I was old enough to listen to my own music instead of listening to Neil Diamond and Barry Manilow.
Second, they asked the right person. Back in Black had just come out, and would go on to be the third highest selling album worldwide (behind Michael Jackson’s Thriller and Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon). So that store employee knew what they were talking about. Last of all, with me being 10 years old, I’m pretty sure if the album that had just come out was Highway to Hell instead of Back in Black, I would have never gotten an AC/DC album until many years later!

Back in Black is such an incredible album. It does not have a single bad song. A lot of people say that all AC/DC songs are the same. But, if you listen to these songs, you will find that this is not the case.

AC/DC’s popularity was rising higher and higher. Especially after the success of 1979’s Highway to Hell album. Then tragedy struck. The band had begun developing their next album when lead singer, Bon Scott, died unexpectedly from alcohol poisoning on February 19, 1980 at the age of 33.

The remaining members contemplated disbanding. However, Bon Scott’s parents encouraged them to continue on. So, AC/DC went on to hire Brian Johnson as their new lead singer, which was an excellent decision. They also brought in Mutt Lange to produce the next album, after he had done a great job producing Highway to Hell.

Back in Black was released on July 25, 1980, less than half a year after the death of Bon Scott. According to Angus Young the album’s all-black cover was a “sign of mourning” for Scott. Atlantic Records disagreed with the cover, but accepted if the band put a grey outline around the AC/DC logo. They were worried about how well Back in Black would be received. The worries did not last long though, as it became an immediate success. Not only did it go to number one on the UK Albums Chart, its success meant AC/DC were the first band since The Beatles to have four albums in the British Top 100 simultaneously, as Highway To Hell, If You Want Blood You’ve Got It, and Let There Be Rock all re-entered the charts right after Back in Black was released.

Now, let’s get to the music:

1. “Hells Bells”

13. That’s the number of times the bell tolls at the beginning of the song. I used to love counting the tolls of the bells for some reason. Any rock band worth their salt just had to have the unlucky 13, and AC/DC delivered! This was a great way to start the album. “Back in Black” would also be justifiable as the lead single. But since the song was written to commemorate the death of Bon Scott, it was a cool song to lead off with, and Scott would have approved.

2. “Shoot to Thrill”

3. “What Do You Do for Money Honey”

4. “Given the Dog a Bone”

5. “Let Me Put My Love into You”

This song rated number 6 in the Parents Music Resource Center Filthy Fifteen list in 1985. The was the censorship commie committee founded by Tipper Gore and some other wives of politicians. The goal of the committee was to gain parental control over the access of children to music. The outcome was that “Parental Advisory” labels were placed on selected releases.

“Let Me Put My Love into You” made the list. I guess they didn’t listen too closely to the previous song! Who needs 50 Shades of Grey, ladies?!
So AC/DC made the list along with the scandalous Sheena Easton (“Sugar Walls”), Cyndi Lauper (“She Bop”), and of course Judas Priest (“Eat Me Alive”) and Twisted Sister (“We’re Not Gonna Take It”).

At least the labels helped us realize which albums were the best ones!

Side two

6. “Back in Black”

TURN IT UP!!! How can you not get pumped by this song?! This is one of those songs that you recognize immediately upon hearing the first note. Bands are lucky if they have a signature song. AC/DC has three! “Highway to Hell”, and then two from this album alone – this song, and the next song coming up. The song “Back in Black” was AC/DC’s tribute to Bon Scott. And it ranks on many music lists. It was ranked No. 4 by VH1 on their list of the 40 Greatest Metal Songs, and in 2009, it was named the second greatest hard rock song of all time by VH1. It was also ranked No. 187 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. The same magazine has also ranked “Back in Black” number 29 on “The 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time”.

7. “You Shook Me All Night Long”

The third signature song by AC/DC. People that whine about AC/DC being too loud even like this song. When it was released, “You Shook Me All Night Long” reached up to #35 on the USA’s Hot 100 pop singles chart. It was re-released in 1986 when it was included on the Who Made Who album. The song placed at No. 10 on VH1’s list of “The 100 Greatest Songs of the 80s”. It was also No. 1 on VH1’s “Top Ten AC/DC Songs”.

I have one pretty cool memory of this song. Towards the end of my Navy Boot Camp, we were given a little bit more freedom. One of the rewards that we got was that at night, for a couple of hours, we could go to this greasy spoon diner on the base. The name of the diner – The Greasy Spoon! Anyway, the first time I walked in there, a jukebox was playing, and “You Shook Me All Night Long” was the song that was on. It was the first real music that I heard in almost 2 months! What a first song to hear! While most people were excited to get a burger and fries, I was excited to hear real music! So that is always the first thing that comes to my mind now whenever I hear that song.

So get yourself a nice greasy burger and some burnt fries, and click play!

8. “Have a Drink on Me”

9. “Shake a Leg”

10. “Rock and Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution”

This was a great choice to close the album. It is the most “mellow” song on here. It has an awesome bluesy feel to it. This would have also been a great Bon Scott song. But Brian Johnson proved to be a perfect replacement.

Albums of the ’80s – Kiss Unmasked

Welcome to the new series – Albums of the ’80s! I will try to post at least one album a week. We will go over some classic albums of the ’80s as well as some lesser known ones. We’ll have some fun remembering songs we haven’t heard in a while, and maybe we’ll hear “new” old music we missed the first time around. I hope you enjoy this. Let me know if you have any suggestions of albums you would like to know about, or if you have any favorites that you want people to hear.

I plan on jumping around to different years. But the first two albums I will cover happen to be from 1980. They are the first two that I ever owned. We will start with:

Kiss – Unmasked

Unmasked was the first album (well technically cassette) that I ever owned. I got it as a present along with a tape recorder to play it on. I still have the tape, and it is still in pretty good shape – especially considering the number of times it has been played.

So, my first album came at a transitional period for Kiss. Unmasked was the last studio album to feature the original lineup of Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, Ace Frehley and Peter Criss until the band reunited. Peter Criss technically was not even involved with the album. Anton Fig played drums on all the tracks, and was uncredited for it. After the album came out, Eric Carr would go on to be the permanent drummer for Kiss, until his death in 1991.

Although the album was titled Unmasked, this is not when the band did away with their makeup. The cover art was actually a comic strip. It featured a goofy photographer trying to catch the band members without their makeup on. Finally, Ace told him that if he dropped the camera they would take their masks off. They took their masks off, only to reveal that they had their makeup on underneath. Since I had this on cassette, I would read the comic with a magnifying glass!

The real unmasking of Kiss came on MTV on September 18, 1983:

Now let’s get into the music. Unmasked wasn’t one of their most popular albums. Even some of the band members did not like it! According to Paul Stanley:

Unmasked? I would give that one star. A song like “Tomorrow” is really a great song, but I think ‘Unmasked’ is a pretty crappy album. It’s wimpy. A lot of those songs started out much ballsier, and much more rock’n’ rolly. Somehow they lost something on their way to vinyl.” p331, Kiss-Behind the Mask

Nonetheless, I loved this album, and still like most of the songs on it. Here is the playlist:

1. Is That You?

The album started out wi a bang. Or actually a Paul Stanley scream. This Paul Stanley song is probably the hardest rocking song on the album. A great way to start.

2. Shandi

Another Paul Stanley song. This time a ballad. This song was a hit in several countries. It peaked at #47 in the U.S., but reached all the way to #5 on the Australian charts.

3. Talk to Me

I love this Ace Frehley song. The song was not released as a single in the U.S., but was released in several other countries where it reached the top-10.

4. Naked City

Hehe. He said “Naked”. As a ten year old, that was awesome! Of course, the Naked City, in this Gene Simmons song, refers to New York, and not a city where people are actually walking around naked. But it’s a pretty cool, if not depressing, song.

5. What Makes the World Go ‘Round

There were 3 songs on this album that I played over-and-over again. And this Paul Stanley tune was one of them. Warning: This song could possibly give you an earworm! Not a bad song to have stuck in your head though.

6. Tomorrow

This is song #2 that I played over-and-over. This is another great Paul Stanley song. I really like the guitar solo as well.

7. Two Sides of the Coin

I like this Ace Frehley song a lot. If you liked “Talk To Me” earlier in this album, then you’ll like this one.

8. She’s So European

Back to Gene Simmons. Not a bad song. Not exactly the best song on the album, but still good.

9. Easy As It Seems

The last of the Paul Stanley songs. It’s probably my least favorite Stanley song on the album, but it’s still not bad.

10. Torpedo Girl

Ugh. This Ace Frehley song is somewhere around 3 1/2 minutes, and I think he repeats the title of the song for the last 2 1/2 minutes. The song after this was one of my favorites so I would always try skipping by this one. But since they repeat the same thing over and over and over again, I could never tell when it was almost over. Then I would skip too far, and have to rewind, and keep going back and forth. All you guys that used to listen to cassettes know what I’m talking about. Eeesh, It would have been faster to just listen to the whole song.

11. You’re All That I Want

This Gene Simmons song was one of my favorites. Great way to close out the album.

One Hit Wonders of the ’80s: 1986 – Regina

“Baby Love” by Regina

Regina (Regina Richards) wanted to work as a songwriter. She co-wrote “Baby Love” with frequent Madonna collaborator Stephen Bray. The song definitely has an early Madonna feel to it. Regina wanted somebody other than herself to sing the song, however her record label, Atlantic Records, thought otherwise and told Regina to sing the song herself.

The song was put on Regina’s Curiosity album, which also included “Say Goodbye,” a song she had originally written with Kenny Rogers in mind. She struck it big with the song “Baby Love”, which shot all the way up to #10 on September 13, 1986. The song was her only mainstream top 40 hit. She did have other songs, such as “Beat of Love,” “Head On,” and “Extraordinary Love,” that were a little more popular on the dance charts.

A second Regina album, Best Kept Secret, was never released. However, she did appear in an anti-drug public service announcement with the animated McGruff the Crime Dog, that aired well into the 1990s.

Now let’s Return to 1986, and from the “Oh, now I remember this song!!!” department, here is “Baby Love” by Regina: