Category Archives: 1982

Top 40 Songs This Week – December 4, 1982: Songs 40-31

Hi everybody, after a little time off, we are finally back with a new Top 40! This week, we will return to 1982. We were still in the very early days of MTV. Ah, everything was so fresh and new. Now let’s Return to the week ending December 4, 1982 and enjoy the glory days.

40. “Let’s Go Dancin’ (Ooh La, La, La)” by Kool and the Gang

We’ll begin the countdown with a song that I was familiar with. This was post-“Celebration,” but before their great “Emergency!” album.

39. “Shock the Monkey” by Peter Gabriel

This was Peter Gabriel’s first top 40 hit in the U.S. I’m not a big Peter Gabriel fan, but I don’t mind this song.

38. “You Got Lucky” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

This was the first single released from Petty and the Heartbreakers Long After Dark album. The video was pioneering, in the early days of MTV, as it takes over a minute before the song itself actually starts. That is a hovercar from Logan’s Run that Tom Petty and Mike Campbell are in at the beginning of the video.

37. “What About Me” by Moving Pictures

I love this ballad by the Australian band, Moving Pictures. This was their first #1 single in Australia. It spent 6 consecutive weeks at the top of those charts. The success of the song helped bring it to the U.S., where it became a hit as well.

36. “A Penny For Your Thoughts” by Tavares

Well, this Rhode Islander is embarrassed! I had never heard of Tavares, and they are originally from Providence, RI. To make matters worse, the fact that they were inducted into the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame this year got by me. Tavares is an R&B, funk and soul band consisting of four brothers. They had their most success in the ’70s with #1 R&B hits “It Only Takes a Minute” (1975) and “Whodunit” (1977). In 1974, they also scored a #1 hit with Hall & Oates’She’s Gone.”
This song, “A Penny For Your Thoughts” was the last hit song for Tavares, and was nominated for a Grammy for Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group (they lost to “Wanna Be With You” by Earth Wind & Fire).

35. “Everybody Wants You” by Billy Squier

Classic Billy Squier. This song flat-out rocks!

34. “The Other Guy” by The Little River Band

Australia is represented once again. I like The Little River Band, and this is a good song. In early 1982, one of the founding members, Glenn Shorrock, was forced out of the group. This was the first single featuring new lead singer, John Farnham.

33. “Hand To Hold On To” by John Cougar

I was unfamiliar with this song. However, this was from the classic American Fool album which also featured “Jack and Diane” and “Hurts So Good.” So, you could see how this would get lost in the shuffle. If you like those songs, then you will probably like “Hand To Hold On To.” It has a similar sound.

32. “On the Wings of Love” by Jeffrey Osborne

Rhode Island is represented once again! I always loved this song. Jeffrey Osborne has an outstanding voice. This was a great song from his self-titled debut album.

31. “Baby, Come to Me” by Patti Austin with James Ingram

This is a nice duet by Patti Austin and James Ingram. And we can’t have a countdown without Michael McDonald somewhere in it! He provided the backing vocals to this song. This song was a minor hit earlier in the year, peaking at #73. But, then it’s popularity exploded as it became the romantic theme song for Luke Spencer on General Hospital. Warner Brothers decided to re-release the song, and it went on to become a #1 smash hit. Ah, the power of ’80s television!


 

Well, that wraps up today’s countdown. I didn’t think that was too shabby. This is going to be one of those weeks where the songs just keep getting better and better. We’ll be back tomorrow to continue the countdown.

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Top 40 Songs This Week – May 29, 1982: Songs 10-1

Welcome back as we wrap up this week’s Top 40 Countdown. This has been a great week of music from 1982, and the Top 10 does not disappoint. You can go back and check out songs 40-31, 30-21, and 20-11 if you missed them. Now, let’s Return to the week ending May 29, 1982, and count down the top 10 songs.

10. “Get Down On It” by Kool and the Gang

Get your back up off the wall, dance, come on! What a great way to start the top 10. This is a nice combination of funk and pop.

9. “Did It In A Minute” by Daryl Hall and John Oates

This is a great song fom Hall & Oates’ Private Eyes album.

8. “Always On My Mind” by Willie Nelson

And once again, we have a Country corssover hit in the Top 40. This is a beautiful ballad by the legendary Willie Nelson. The song was written by Johnny Christopher, Mark James and Wayne Carson, and performed by dozens of artists. Willie’s version won 3 Grammy Awards:
Songwriters Christopher, James and Carson won Song of the Year and Best Country Song; in addition, Nelson won for Best Male Country Vocal Performance.

7. “Don’t You Want Me” by The Human League

Classic ’80s tune by the sythpop group, The Human League.

6. “’65 Love Affair”by Paul Davis

The great hits continue! Paul Davis, mainly known for his soft rock hits, “I Go Crazy” and “Cool Night“, changed things up a bit here. This sounds like it could be a Hall & Oates song.
This made Paul Davis very successful. However, he was disgusted with going commercial, so he opted out of his record contract with Arista, and signed with Razor & Tie Record Company, a label on which Davis never charted on the Hot 100.

5. “The Other Woman” by Ray Parker Jr.

Yes, Ray Parker Jr. had another song besides “Ghostbusters“. This is a really good funky pop song.

4. “867-5309/Jenny” by Tommy Tutone

Another ultimate ’80s hit. This is the phone number everybody knows by heart.

3. “I’ve Never Been To Me” by Charlene

This song was originally on Charlene’s self-titled 1977 album. It had barely cracked the Top 100, peaking at #97. Motown, Charlene’s record company, decided not to release a second album due to the lack of success of the first one. So, Charlene left the music industry, met and married an Englishman. They stayed in England, and she took a job at a candy store in Ilford.
In 1982, a disc jockey at a Tampa radio station began playing “I’ve Never Been to Me” track off the Charlene album. It was a big hit among the local listeners. The DJ, Scott Shannon, contacted Motown to let them know that the song had potential to be a hit. Motown president, Jay Lasker, personally contacted Charlene, and invited her to re-sign, and re-release “I’ve Never Been To Me.” She did so, and the song became a big hit. The re-release debuted at #84 – 13 notches above the peak of the song’s original release. And it reached it’s true peak this week at #3.

2. “Don’t Talk To Strangers” by Rick Springfield

In the early ’80s, Rick Springfield was one of the most popular people in the entertainment industry. He was Dr. Noah Drake on General Hospital. And he could actually sing. Really well! Of course he was very popular with the ladies. But, most people really enjoyed his music. And this song is classic Springfield.

1. “Ebony and Ivory” by Paul McCartney with Stevie Wonder

And we have arrived at our #1 song this week. This song gives the not-so-subtle message about the keys on the piano. Oops, I mean racial harmony. Whenever I hear this song, I can’t help but think of the classic Eddie Murphy and Joe Piscopo skit on Saturday Night Live as they performed this song, with different lyrics, as Stevie Wonder and Frank Sinatra respectively.

“Ebony and Ivory” was a huge hit, seven weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Well that concludes this week’s countdown. I hope you enjoiyed it as much as I have. I don’t think there was any song on here that I did not like. We’ll be back next week with a new countdown from a different year. Until then, Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars.

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Top 40 Songs This Week – May 29, 1982: Songs 20-11

Welcome back to the Top 40 Countdown. So far, each day has had quite a variety of music, and once again, today is no different. If you missed the previous songs, you can check out songs 40-31 and 30-21. Today the songs range from rock, to easy listening, to oldies/classic rock, to…classical? Hmm, curious. Let’s Return to the week ending May 29, 1982, and continue the countdown.

20. “The Beatles Movie Medley” by The Beatles

Well, this isn’t exactly an ’80s sounding song. But, any excuse to play some Beatles is just fine with me! This is basically clips of Beatles songs that were selected from Beatles films. The films are A Hard Day’s Night, Help!, Magical Mystery Tour, Yellow Submarine and Let It Be. The songs are “Magical Mystery Tour”, “All You Need Is Love”, “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away”, “I Should Have Known Better”, “A Hard Day’s Night”, “Ticket to Ride” and “Get Back”.
This is the only Beatles single not released on CD.

19. “Making Love” by Roberta Flack

Now, we’ll move back to some easy listening music. Roberta Flack had a string of hits in the 1970s. This song would be her last Top 40 hit as a solo artist. She did have some hits later that were duets with other artists.

18. “Run for the Roses” by Dan Fogelberg

I had never heard this song before. Apparently, it was considered an unofficial theme for the Kentucky Derby. Dan Fogelberg wrote it in two days, recorded it in two days, and gave the song to ABC Sports. The song was commissioned by the ABC television network for the 106th running of the Derby in 1980. It premiered on the network’s Derby night special the night before.

Fogelberg included the song on his 1981 album, The Innocent Age. It was released as a single in 1982, and it peaked here at #18.

17. “Crimson and Clover” by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts

OK, let’s get things rockin’ now! The 1968 classic version of this song was one of my favorites by Tommy James and the Shondells. It is also one of my favorite songs by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts.

16. “Rosanna” by Toto

Classic hit by the awesome band, Toto. This was the opening track and the first single from their 1982 album Toto IV. This song won the Grammy for the Record of the Year at the 1983 award cermony.

I don’t usually show 2 videos of the same song, but, I’ll make an exception here. This is a really good live version.

15. “It’s Gonna Take a Miracle” by Deniece Williams

This is a good song by Deniece “Let’s Hear It For the Boy” Williams once you get past the yapping at the beginning.

14. “Man On Your Mind” by The Little River Band

This is a good song by The Little River Band. But I can see why they did not have too many videos.

13. “Empty Garden (Hey Hey Johnny) by Elton John

This was Elton John’s awesome tribute to his good friend, John Lennon. The song is titled “Empty Garden”, as Lennon’s last live performance was at Madison Square Garden (with Elton John in 1974).

12. “Chariots of Fire” by Vangelis

This instrumental song was way better than the movie.

11. “Heat of the Moment” by Asia

And we’ll wrap up today with this great song by Asia. This was the first single released from Asia’s self-titled debut album.

What a great countdown this has been! I can’t even pick out a favorite song today. It’s a 3 way tie with “Crimson and Clover”, “Rosanna, and “Heat of the Moment.” We’ll finish up the countdown tomorrow, and those songs will also be great. So be sure to come back!

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Top 40 Songs This Week – May 29, 1982: Songs 30-21

Welcome back as we continue this week’s Top 40 Countdown. You can go back and check out songs 40-31 if you missed them. Yesterday’s 10 songs were quite the variety, and we will continue that trend today. So, lets Return to the week ending May 29, 1982, and continue on with the countdown.

30. “When It’s Over” by Loverboy

Good way to start the countdown today. I have a soft spot with rock bands that featured keyboards, like Journey, Styx, and Bon Jovi. This was not one of Loverboy’s biggest hits, but it’s still a very good song.

29. “Hurts So Good” by John Cougar

You can’t go wrong with some early John Cougar! This was early in this song’s rise up the countdown. It peaked at #2, and it spent 16 weeks in the top 10, the longest time for any song in the ’80s.

28. “Without You (Not Another Lonely Night)” by Franke and the Knockouts

Franke and the Knockouts was a short-lived band, formed in New Jersey. They had a few top 40 hits, including this one. But they were more successful at writing a couple of other songs that were performed by somebody else: Eric Carmen’s 1987 hit single “Hungry Eyes” as well as the song “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life,” (both of which were featured in the 1987 film Dirty Dancing).

27. “Wake Up Little Susie” by Simon and Garfunkel

Simon and Garfunkel have said that the Everly Brothers were a big influence on their music. Simon and Garfunkel’s live version of “Wake Up Little Susie,” recorded in their concert in New York’s Central Park on September 19, 1981, reached #27 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1982, and is the duo’s last Top 40 hit.

26. “Love’s Been A Little Bit Hard On Me” by Juice Newton

Next up is a hit by Country crossover star Juice Newton. This song will eventually peak at #7 and earn Newton a Grammy nomination for Best Female Vocalist in the Pop category. The video is pretty funny. It was actually awarded Video of the Year by the American Video Association in 1982.

25. “My Girl” by Donnie Iris

When I saw the title of this song, I thought it was a cover of the Temptations’ classic. But, it’s a totally different song. This kind of sounds like a John Lennon type song. This song was Donnie Iris’ highest charting hit single, the last of three which reached the Top 40. The only Donnie Iris song I was familiar with was “Ah! Leah!“. He continues to release new material and tours throughout the greater Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Youngstown and Cleveland, Ohio areas.

24. “Let It Whip” by The Dazz Band

We can’t have a Top 40 in the early ’80s and not have a Funk song! “Let It Whip” was The Dazz band’s biggest hit, peaking at number one on the R&B chart for five non-consecutive weeks. The single also reached number two on the Dance chart and number five on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song won the Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals in 1983.

23. “Fantasy” by Aldo Nova

“Fantasy” is the debut single by Canadian rock musician Aldo Nova, and was his biggest hit. It climbed to #3 on the Mainstream rock chart, and #23 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart.

22. “Still In Saigon” by The Charlie Daniels Band

The Charlie Daniels Band is yet another Country crossover star, best known for the smash hit “The Devil Went Down to Georgia“. “Still In Saigon” is a bit of a rocker, and stands the test of time. It is about a Vietnam Vet who is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This song could be released today, substituting Vietnam with Iraq or Afghanistan.

21. “Body Language” by Queen

We’ll wrap up the countdown today with one of my all time favorite bands. This song is different from anything else they had done at this point. They were ahead of their time with this song. Way before Madonna, this the video for this song was so racy that MTV wouldn’t play it. This was also a controversial song among hardcore Queen fans. It was closer to a disco sound than rock, as was a lot of songs on the Hot Space album. At the time, whenever the band played this song or other songs from that album in concert, they were sometimes being booed. And some fans went as far as making signs saying “Disco Sucks!” I don’t have a problem with this song. One of the things I love about Queen was their willingness to experiment with their music.

Well, that wraps up the songs for today. I hope you’re enjoying this countdown as much as I am. We will continue this countdown tomorrow.

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Top 40 Songs This Week – May 29, 1982: Songs 40-31

Hello again everybody, and welcome to the Top 40 Countdown. We’ll count down the most popular songs in the USA straight off the Billboard Top 40 chart from the week ending May 29, 1982. I’m sorry I was out last week. And Shadoe Stevens was nowhere to be found to fill in. And Ryan Seacrest was too busy. This is going to be another great week of music. There some really good early ’80s soft rock songs, some awesome rock songs, and some timeless, ultimate ’80s songs.
So, let’s Return to the week ending May 29, 1982, and begin the countdown.

40. “Friends In Love” by Dionne Warwick and Johnny Mathis

Three years before Dionne Warwick sang about what friends are for, she performed this song with Johnny Mathis. This song was written by Grammy winning songwriter Jay Graydon (“Turn Your Love Around“, “After the Love Has Gone“), legendary producer David Foster, and Chicago keyboardist/singer Bill Champlin.

39. “Only The Lonely” by The Motels

Classic ’80s tune! This was The Motels’ big breakthrough song, which was released off of their 3rd studio album, All Four One. The song was written by lead singer, Martha Davis. In an interview on Retro Junk, Davis was asked about the inspiration behind the lyrics. She said,

“Only the Lonely” was one of those songs that was just there when I picked up my guitar. It was just there, lyrics, chords arrangement, just waiting for me. My job was to transcribe. I will probably never be 100% sure of the emotion that manifested its spontaneous arrival. I think in hind sight it had to do a lot with ‘living the dream’…. being signed to a label, touring, driving around in limos, performing in foreign countries, and at the same time feeling very unhappy and lost.

38. “Circles” by Atlantic Starr

This song was Atlantic Starr’s first song to hit the Billboard Hot 100.

37. “I Love Rock ‘n Roll” by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts

The last time we visited the countdown in 1982, this was the #1 song. Many weeks later it is still in the top 40!

36. “I Don’t Know Where to Start” by Eddie Rabbitt

Nice, easy listening song by Country crossover star, Eddie Rabbitt.

35. “Play The Game Tonight” by Kansas

Awesome song by classic rockers, Kansas. And I think my ears just got music whiplash going from a nice, easy song by Eddie Rabbitt to this rockin’ song! I don’t mind though.

34. “Any Day Now” by Ronnie Milsap

Whip! back to another easy listening song by a Country crossover star – the legendary Ronnie Milsap. This countdown is all over the place, and I love it! This song was written by Burt Bacharach and Bob Hilliard in 1962. It was originally done by Chuck Jackson in 1962. Before Ronnie Milsap covered this song, it was also covered by Elvis in 1969.

33. “Tainted Love” by Soft Cell

Here is another classic ’80s tune. And one of the weirdest videos I’ve ever seen.

32. “When He Shines” by Sheena Easton

Beautiful ballad by Sheena Easton.

31. “Caught Up In You” by .38 Special

I love .38 Special. This was their first single released off of their Special Forces album. It became the band’s first number-one single on the Billboard Top Tracks rock chart. It also became one of the band’s two top ten pop hits, reaching number ten on the Billboard Hot 100. Their other Top 10 single, “Second Chance“, reached #6 in 1989.

Well, not a bad way to start a top 40! Did you have any favorites today? What were you doing back in 1982? I was wrapping up 6th grade around now, and getting ready for the big jump to Junior High School. We’ll be back tomorrow to continue this awesome countdown!

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Top 40 Songs This Week – March 20, 1982: 10-1

I now present to you, the top-10 songs this week in 1982. If you missed the previous songs, you can go back and check out songs
40-31, 30-21, and 20-11. The top-10 is a great combination of pop and rock songs. So, lets Return to March 20, 1982, and finish this countdown.

10. “Pac-Man Fever” by Buckner and Garcia

A novelty song if there ever was one. At the height of “Pac-Man Fever” and the rest of the arcade craze, this song was released, and capitalized on that craze. It actually peaked at #9 on March 27, 1982 (next week).
The duo that performed the song was Jerry Buckner and Gary Garcia. After the huge success of “Pac-Man Fever”, they signed a record deal with Columbia/CBS Records. They never wanted to become a novelty act known for songs based on video games. But when they signed the record deal, the company insisted on a full album of video-game songs, although the duo had intended to write mostly pop music. They caved in to the demands, and released a full album of Pac-Man Fever. Here is their playlist:

Pac-Man Fever (Pac-Man)
Froggy’s Lament (Frogger)
Ode to a Centipede (Centipede)
Do the Donkey Kong (Donkey Kong)
Hyperspace (Asteroids)
The Defender (Defender)
Mousetrap (Mouse Trap)
Goin’ Berzerk (Berzerk)

They never hit it big again.

9. “Shake It Up” by The Cars

Classic Cars tune. This song came out in the middle of their great run of hits.

8. “Mirror Mirror” by Diana Ross

This song is at #8, and I never heard of it before. Or if I did, I blocked it out. This song isn’t bad. At this point, I would probably rather listen to this one instead of “Upside Down” again. According to Wikipedia, “Mirror Mirror” is a 1982 rock-styled hit song. I think Wikipedia’s definition of rock, and my definition of rock are quite different. This is more of a pop song. You can just feel the disco fading away with this song. One other note about this song: It was written by Dennis Matkosky and Michael Sembello, who also wrote “Maniac” from Flashdance (and performed by Sembello). I’m not a Diana Ross fan by any stretch of the imagination. I was kind of dreading having to listen to this song, but it’s really not too bad. I’m not going to rush and buy it, but it’s OK.

7. “Make a Move On Me” by Olivia Newton-John

Olivia Newton-John was on of the first crushes I ever had. Just sayin’. This song was the follow-up to Newton-John’s smash hit “Physical”. I really like this song a lot too. At this point, I prefer “Make a Move On Me” over “Physical“.

6. “We Got the Beat” by The Go-Go’s

This instantly recognizable song is the The Go-Go’s signature song. “We Got the Beat” was originally released in the UK in 1980, and became popular in clubs in the UK and U.S. They went on to re-record the song for their debut album Beauty and the Beat, and was featured in Fast Times at Ridgemont High.
“We Got the Beat” was the Go-Go’s biggest hit spending three weeks at number two on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. There was one song that kept it from becoming #1. And that song is the #1 song from this week.
For what it’s worth, “We Got the Beat” was named one of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. I haven’t looked at that list, but I would not be surprised if “Ice Ice Baby” was on there too.

5. “Sweet Dreams” by Air Supply

This is a typical Air Supply song. So, if you like Air Supply, you’ll like this. If you don’t like them, then you won’t like this song. I don’t remember this song from the radio. But, my parents had an Air Supply Greatest Hits album, and this song was on there. I fall in the camp that likes Air Supply. I did not listen to too many love songs when I was young, but when I did, it was usually Air Supply. I still have not seen them perform live yet, but I do hear that they put on a good show.

4. “That Girl” by Stevie Wonder

This is one last song that I had not heard of. I love Stevie Wonder’s voice, but I don’t like too many of his ’80s songs. I prefer his old music. “That Girl” was a new single on Wonder’s album-era greatest-hits compilation, Stevie Wonder’s Original Musiquarium I. At first listen, I’m not liking this song too much.

3. “Centerfold” by The J. Geils Band

Here is the second J. Geils Band song on the countdown this week. This smash hit had been at #1 for 6 weeks before this week. Now, like we did at a Rubix Kube concert, start singing The Smurfs theme, then click Play for this song…

2. “Open Arms” by Journey

The ultimate power ballad, by one of my all-time favorite bands. Most of you know the story about this song by now. Keyboardist Jonathan Cain began writing the song when he was with The Babys. But, singer John Waite wanted nothing to do with it. Not long after that, Cain was in Journey. He eventually finished the song with Steve Perry. It was actually almost left off of the Escape album because Neal Schon did not like it. Luckily, the song made it on the album, and was released as a single. It would go on to be their highest charting hit on the Billboard Hot 100. It was #2 for six weeks. It was kept out of the top spot by “Centerfold” as well as this week’s #1 song. Not too shabby. And after this song came out, other rock bands saw how successful this song was, so it almost became mandatory to have at least one power ballad on a rock album.

1. “I Love Rock ‘N Roll” by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts

Here is this week’s #1 song. And I never heard of this one before! Just kidding. Anybody alive, at the time that this song came out, could not escape it. This is the song that put Joan Jett on the map. She is awesome. This song has been overplayed, but I still like her a lot.

One thing I did learn was that this is actually a remake. “I Love Rock ‘N Roll” was originally recorded and released by Arrows in 1975. Joan Jett first heard this song in 1976 when she was in England touring with The Runaways. Joan Jett made the song her own, and it became a Billboard Hot 100 number-one single for seven weeks, beginning with this week.

Well, I hope you enjoyed this week’s countdown. With the positive feedback I’ve been getting, we’re going to keep on rolling and be back with a new countdown next week. In the meantime, I’ll leave you with this: as a wise man once said…”Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars.

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Top 40 Songs This Week – March 20, 1982: 20-11

Welcome back to the Top 40 of March 20, 1982. Today, we will find out which songs charted from 20-11. If you missed the beginning of the countdown, you can take a look and (listen) to songs
40-31 and 30-21.

The next 10 songs are a little heavy on the Easy Listening side. There are still a lot of songs left that you don’t hear too much of these days. So, lets Return to March 20, 1982, and continue the countdown.

20. “Tonight I’m Yours (Don’t Hurt Me)” by Rod Stewart

I was not familiar with this song. This is off of Rod Stewart’s album Tonight I’m Yours, which also featured the song “Young Turks“. “Tonight I’m Yours (Don’t Hurt Me)” has that similar sound. I like a lot of Rod Stewart’s music. However, I don’t like too much of his music after the ’80s. He should try going back to his roots instead of jamming Standards down our throats. Thankfully we can always Return to the ’80s, and listen to his good music all we want.

19. “Take Off” by Bob and Doug McKenzie

Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas created the characters Bob and Doug McKenzie for the show SCTV, eh.
Bob and Doug were dim-witted, beer-chugging brothers were on a very popular sketch on the show called the Great White North. Like most sketch comedy, they had some key catch phrases, such as “take off, you hoser!”, and ending “eh” to the end of their sentences. They became icons in Canadian culture, which led them to having their own movie, Strange Brew, and led them to recording albums. One of those albums was The Great White North. With the help of Geddy Lee, from the legendary band Rush, the single “Take Off”, from that album, became a big hit, eh.

18. “Freeze Frame” by The J. Geils Band

In 1981, The J. Geils Band released the album Freeze Frame. The first single off of that album, “Centerfold”, caused the band’s popularity to skyrocket. The song “Freeze Frame” was released as a single to follow up “Centerfold“, and became the second consecutive million-selling Gold-certified hit from the album. I like this song. The image I take away from this is the band throwing paint all over the place in the video.

17. “Should I Do It” by The Pointer Sisters

Just before the Pointer Sisters’ popularity soared in the ’80s with “I’m So Excited”, they had a very good album called Black & White. It had the hit song “Slow Hand“, which reached #2 on the charts. They also had a hit with this song, as it reached up to #13. “Should I Do It” is a mix of Country and Doo Wop/Old School Girl group. I Love it! The only reason that I already knew about this song is that I own the album.

16. “Take It Easy On Me” by The Little River Band

Here is another Easy Listening hit. I was not familiar with this song. I did not know who The Little River Band was until they came out with the 1990 album, <strong>Get Lucky. I loved the songs “As Long As I’m Alive” and “Listen to Your Heart” from that album. This led me to check out their older stuff. I did hear “Help is On the Way” and “Reminiscing” before, but never knew it was The Little River Band that performed them.
I don’t remember “Take It Easy On Me”. It’s probably on my iPod too. I like this song. It’s not a stand-out song, but it’s nice to listen to. It doesn’t hurt that George Martin produced this song.

15. “Leader of the Band” by Dan Fogelberg

This is an ultimate Soft Rock song. Dan Fogelberg write this song as a tribute to his father, Lawrence Fogelberg, a musician and the leader of a band, who was still alive at the time the song was released.

14. “Chariots of Fire” by Vangelis

Good song – especially for an instrumental. Overrated movie. I have been getting back in to running, and training and running in races. I don’t have this song on my iPod. I wonder if I should try running to it. It would either help, or it would make me run in slow motion.

13. “Key Largo” by Bertie Higgins

Here is another Easy Listening song. I always forget that this was an ’80s song. For some reason, I always think of this is as a ’70s tune. In 2009, VH1 ranked “Key Largo” #75 on its program 100 Greatest One Hit Wonders of the 80s. I like this one a lot.

12. “Bobbie Sue” by The Oak Ridge Boys

The year before this song was released, the Country legends, The Oak Ridge Boys crossed over to mainstream with their smash hit, “Elvira“. This song reached #1 on the Country Singles chart, and did pretty well on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking right here at #12. This is a fun Country song, with a little feel for late ’50s/early ’60s rock-and-roll.

11. “Spirits in the Material World” by The Police

The Police had a short, but very successful run. They released a total of 5 studio albums in 5 years, and they hit it big every time. “Spirits in the Material World” was the first single released off of their penultimate album, Ghost in the Machine. Classic Police.

Well, that’s the end of this portion of the countdown. The next time, we will wrap up with the top 10 songs. Are there any surprises with the 10 songs you just saw/listened to? The top 10 is going to be fun. There is going to be something for everybody. There will be some rock ‘n’ roll that you will love, a novelty song that actually ate up the competition and landed in the top 10, and still some more Easy Listening hits, which may or may not put you to sleep and cause you to have some sweet dreams. In the meantime, I’ll see you next time we Return to the ’80s.

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Top 40 Songs This Week – March 20, 1982: 30-21

The countdown continues as we take a look back at the Top 40 songs from the week ending March 20,1982. In case you missed it, you can check out songs 40-31. Songs 30-21 are an awesome variety. This completes the first half of the countdown, and there are still quite a few songs that are new to me. See if you discover new music with me now as we Return to March 20, 1982…

30. “Harden My Heart” “Find Another Fool” by Quarterflash

Sorry about that. I got a little confused. I thought “Harden My Heart” was the only song Quarterflash ever recorded. Attention 80s on 8, and any other radio station that plays ’80s music: Permanently delete “Harden My Heart” from your playlist, ASAP. And play this one instead! What a great rockin’ song!! Great way to start this part of the countdown.

29. “Through the Years” by Kenny Rogers

These days, he may be more known for the bad plastic surgery on his face (eeesh), but in the late ’70s/early ’80s Kenny Rogers was one of the biggest stars on the planet, with good reason. His Country-Crossover music was a perfect fit for the time. This hit is a great ballad. My mom picked this song out for the Mother-Son dance at my wedding.

28. “My Guy” by Sister Sledge

This song I’m very familiar with, but I did not know that Sister Sledge covered it. Sister Sledge, best known for 1979’s “We Are Family”, remade this 1964 Mary Wells classic. They did a good job with it. It sounds pretty close to the original.

27. “When All Is Said and Done” by Abba

Abba is best known for their smash hit songs in the ’70s. However, I think they songs that they had in the early ’80s were just as good, and maybe even better – this one included. A lot of people stick their nose up to Abba when all they think of is “Dancing Queen”. But I challenge them to listen to “The Winner Takes It All” and “Thank You for the Music“. And check out this one. It’s a very good song that does not get airplay.

26. “One Hundred Ways” by Quincy Jones Featuring James Ingram

This is song that I was not familiar with. When I saw that it was a James Ingram song (along with uber-producer Quincy Jones), I was looking forward to listening to it – and was not disappointed! This song and “Just Once” appeared Quincy Jones’s album The Dude, which earned him triple Grammy nominations, including Best New Artist. “One Hundred Ways” won him the Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance.

25. “Edge of Seventeen (Just Like the White Winged Dove)” by Stevie Nicks

I love just about everything Stevie Nicks does, and this is one of my favorites.

24. “Don’t Talk to Strangers” by Rick Springfield

Great song that came out in the middle of Springfield-mania.

23. “Daddy’s Home” by Cliff Richard

I did not know anything about this song. Cliff Richard was a very successful singer from 1958-1963. Does the year 1963 ring a bell? Yes, that marked the beginning of Beatlemania. When the Beatles arrived, many, many acts were affected, including Ciff Richard’s. He had some other hits throughout the ’60s, but nowhere near the level where he once was. In the late ’70s Richard had a little resurgence that ran throughout the ’80s. This song is a throwback to late-50s music.

22. “(Oh) Pretty Woman” by Van Halen

Van Halen was pretty successful at remaking some classic songs (“You Really Got Me“, “Dancing in the Street“), and this was one of them. The Roy Orbison original is great, and Van Halen made this version their own.

21. “Do You Believe In Love” by Huey Lewis and the News

And we’ll close out the countdown today with one of my all-time favorite Huey Lewis and the News songs. I get sick of a lot of songs, but for some reason, I still enjoy this one a lot.

What did you think of today’s countdown? Any surprises? We’ll be back with songs 20-11. I just did a sneak peak, and there are still several songs that I don’t know/remember. I’m looking forward to the next 10 songs, and I hope you are too!

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Top 40 Songs This Week – March 20, 1982: 40-31

Well, the Top 40 This Week series went over pretty good, so we’ll do another one this week. This week, we’ll go back a little earlier in the decade, and Return to 1982. I was not a regular listener of Top 40 radio back then. We did not have cable TV yet (hence, no MTV), so the only music I
was famliar with was what my parents listened to, and the rock music I listened to (Van Halen and AC/DC).
At first glance of this top 40 list, I am only familiar with 23. There may be some more songs that I remember when I hear them, but I have a feeling I’m going to discover new old music. And I hope you do too. So let’s Return to the week ending March 20, 1982, and check out the bottom 10 songs of the Top-40, and see how many we remember.

40. “Just Can’t Win ‘Em All” by Stevie Woods

Right off the bat, here is a song I was not familiar with. This song prevented Stevie Woods from being known as a one-hit wonder, as he had a previous top-40 hit with “Steal the Night”. After “Just Can’t Win ‘Em All”, Woods did not have another hit in the U.S. After his fame fizzled in the U.S., he moved to Germany. He died in Berlin of diabetes-related complications on January 28, 2014.
This song isn’t bad, but it’s not something I’m going to hurry up and buy.

39. “Don’t Let Him Know” by Prism

This is another song that I didn’t know. What a pleasant surprise! Prism was a Canadian rock band. I hadn’t heard of them, but they did win the Canadian music industry Juno Award for Group of the Year in 1981.
“Don’t Let Him Know” is a very good song. It also happens to be co-written by a pre-fame Bryan Adams, who also contributed to several Prism songs.

38. “Goin’ Down” by Greg Guidry

This makes the 3rd song in a row that I did not know. Greg Guidry was an American singer-songwriter. He wrote songs for Climax Blues Band, Robbie Dupree, Exile, Johnny Taylor, Sawyer Brown, and Reba McEntire.
He released the album Over the Line, which produced two hit singles, “Goin’ Down” (US #17, US AC #11) and a duet with his sister Sandy, “Into My Love” (US #92). After this, he continued to write songs, but he did not release another album until 2000. Greg Guidry died in a fire on July 28, 2003. Boy, this top 40 is starting off pleasantly.
Here is the Easy Listening hit “Goin’ Down”.

37. “Love in the First Degree” by Alabama

The streak is over! I am very familiar with this song. I didn’t listen to much Country music in the ’80s. But, Alabama was always one of my favorite bands. “Love in the First Degree” is a nice ballad and it was the group’s fifth straight No. 1 single (and second multi-week No. 1) on the Billboard magazine Hot Country Singles chart.

36 47 ’65 LOVE AFFAIR –•– Paul Davis (Arista)-4 (36)

36. “’65 Love Affair” by Paul Davis

Well, that was short lived. I was not familiar with this song either. This was Paul Davis’ highest charting hit, but I am more familiar with two of his other songs – “I Go Crazy” (1977) and “Cool Night“, which was recorded at the same time as “’65 Love Affair”.

I like “’65 Love Affair” a lot. It reminds me of old school Hall & Oates. I’ll try to get over the fact that 3 out of the first 5 artists are dead (Paul Davis died on April 22, 2008 – one day after his 60th birthday) and enjoy this song. This is another one I’ll have to buy.

35. “Nobody Said It Was Easy (Lookin’ For the Lights)” by Le Roux

This is another new song for me. LeRoux is a pop/rock band from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. This countdown is going to cost me a lot of money! This is another one I’ll have to buy. This song reminds me of the late-’80s country band Restless Heart, but a little more rock sound.

34. “867-5309/Jenny” by Tommy Tutone

You know the song. You’ve dialed the number. An ultimate, awesome ’80s tune. I still like it today.

33 34 TELL ME TOMORROW (Part 1) –•– Smokey Robinson (Tamla)-10 (33)

33. “Tell Me Tomorrow (Part 1)” by Smokey Robinson

Smokey Robinson is a Motown legend, but I’m not a big fan. This song is alright. But, while you’re listening to this, I’m going call 867-5309 again.

32. “On the Way to the Sky” by Neil Diamond

I know this song because my mother is one of the biggest Neil Diamond fans on earth. I was not a big fan of this phase of his career. I much prefer his older, rockin’ music. This song is OK. If you like Easy Listening music, then this is for you.

31. “Juke Box Hero” by Foreigner

We’ll wrap up the first 10 songs with my favorite Foreigner song. They were on top of their game here. This is off of their classic 4 album. If I hear “Hot Blooded” or “I Want to Know What Love Is” one more time, I may pull my hair (or what’s left of it) out! But this one I can listen to more than any of their other songs.

Are some of these songs new to you? I thought this was a good combination of easy listening and rock. We’ll be back tomorrow for songs 30-21.

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