Category Archives: 1983

Top 40 Songs This Week (UK Edition) – 19 June 1983: Songs 10-1

Logo: Tops of the popsWelcome back to this week’s Top 40 Countdown! If you missed the previous songs, you can go ahead and check out songs 40-31, 30-21, and 20-11. This has been an exciting week for ’80s music! Today, there may be a few songs we haven’t heard much of. However, this list is covered with very familiar songs, and legendary artists. Let’s conclude this week’s countdown, and check them out!


 

10. “When We Were Young” by Bucks Fizz

Bucks Fizz was a U.K. pop group that had enormous success in Europe from 1981-84. Although they had no hits in the U.S., they had a string of top 10 hits in the early ’80s. This song was their 6th Top 10 hit.

 

9. “Nobody’s Diary” by Yazoo

This song by the synth-pop group, would peak at #3 in the U.K. It did not chart on the Mainstream U.S. chart, but did hit #1 in the U.S. Dance Clubs. I love this band, and Alison Moyet’s voice is so mesmerizing for me.

 

 

8. “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin'” by Michael Jackson

This one is a bit familiar to everyone around the world. This was the opening track on Thriller, and the fourth single released. It would peak right here this week at #8 in the U.K., and reach #5 in the U.S.

 

 

7. “Waiting for a Train” by Flash and the Pan

I love me some play on words! I had never heard of this group before. This was The Australian group’s most successful single, peaking right here this week at #7.

 

 

6. “I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues” by Elton John

Has anybody seen the Elton John movie, Rocketman? I haven’t seen it yet, but I heard it wasn’t that great. Anyway, this was one of Elton John’s biggest hits of the ’80s. It would peak at #5 in the U.K. and #4 in the U.S.

 

 

5. “Bad Boys” by Wham!

This was the third single released from Wham!’s debut album, Fantastic. I was not familiar with this song. If I had heard of it when it was first released, I would have made fun of it. I was in the beginning of my rocker phase, and Wham! singing about bad boys would have been funny to me.

 

4. “Flashdance…..What a Feeling” by Irene Cara

Here’s another smash hit that is very familiar tom U.S. audiences. This is pretty much Irene Cara’s signature song. This is the theme song for the iconic ’80s movie Flashdance.

 

 

3. “China Girl” by David Bowie

Here is a smash hit by the late, great David Bowie, from his iconic Let’s Dance album. This song was written by Bowie and Iggy Pop in 1977, and actually first appeared on Iggy Pop’s debut solo album The Idiot. But, this version was the more successful.

 

 

2. “Baby Jane” by Rod Stewart

Here is another music legend. This song was Rod Stewart’s final #1 single in the U.K. As the decade went on, Stewart was actually more popular in the U.S. He had a huge amount of success with his Out of Order album in the U.S. This song, from his Body Wishes album, peaked at #14 in the U.S.

 

1. “Every Breath You Take” by The Police

And we wrap up this week’s countdown with what I consider one of the most overrated and overplayed songs of the ’80s. There were so many much better songs on their Synchronicity album. However, this is the one that became their signature song. It was a #1 hit in the U.S. for 8 straight weeks, and was #1 here in the U.K. for 4 straight weeks. I may think the song is overrated, but there’s no denying its success. And it does give me nostalgia for the ’80s. So there’s that.


Well, that wraps up this week’s countdown. What a great week of music! I hope you enjoyed it. What were some of your favorite songs? The next Top 40 will be back in the U.S. In the meantime, Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.

Top 40 Songs This Week (UK Edition) – 19 June 1983: Songs 20-11

Logo: Tops of the popsWelcome back to this week’s Top 40 Countdown! If you missed the previous songs, you can go ahead and check out songs 40-31 and 30-21.

Again, you can click on the song title to get the YouTube video, and you can click on the album cover to get the song from Amazon. Now, let’s continue the countdown.


20. “We Came to Dance” by Ultravox

The Midge Ure-led New Wave band never charted high in the U.S. However, this is a different story in the U.K. where they scored seven Top 10 albums and seventeen Top 40 singles. This song, from their 6th album Quartet, would peak at #18.

 

 

19. “Moonlight Shadow” by Mike Oldfield

Mike Oldfield is an English multi-instrumentalist and composer. Scottish vocalist Maggie Reilly, who had collaborated with Mike Oldfield since 1980, performed the vocals on this song. While it did not chart in the U.S., this song was a smash hit all over the rest of the world, topping the charts in many countries. It would peak at #4 here. In the U.S., Mike Oldfield may be best known for his 1973 song, “Tubular Bells“. Don’t recognize that name? Well it is best known here as the theme for the film, The Exorcist.

 

18. “Hang On Now” by Kajagoogoo

Kajagoogoo was a one-hit wonder in the U.S. with their smash, “Too Shy”. But, they had a few more hits in the U.K., including this one. This was the third single released from their debut album White Feathers. It would peak at #13 here.

 

 

17. “I Dream to Sleep” by H2O

This is the first of two Top 40 hits for the Scottish band H2O. It was released just ahead of their debut album, Faith. It would peak right here at #17. Their follow-up single “Just Outside of Heaven” reached No. 38 later the same year. They had no more hits after that, which led to their break-up in 1985.

 

 

16. “Garden Party (The Great Cucumber Massacre)” by Marillion

Marillion is a very cool Prog-Rock band from England. Unfortunately, they were never able to get a break in the States. But, they did have many hits in the U.K.

 

 

 

15. “Dark is the Night” by Shakatak

Long before Shaquille O’Neal came out with his Shaq Attaq sneaker line (which you would need to take out a second mortgage in order to afford), this jazz-funk band, Shakatak, went on a string of hits in the U.K. This song would peak right here at #15.

 

 

14. “Buffalo Soldier” by Bob Marley & The Wailers

The legendary Bob Marley recorded this song in 1978. It was released on his posthumous 1983 album Confrontation. According to Wikipedia, the title and lyrics refer to the black U.S. cavalry regiments, known as “Buffalo Soldiers”, that fought in the Indian Wars after 1866. Marley linked their fight to a fight for survival, and recasts it as a symbol of black resistance.
Oddly, this song was covered by Vanilla Ice in 2008.

13. “Love Town” by Booker Newbury III

The soulful Youngstown, Ohio native didn’t score very big in his home country. But, he had a big hit with this song in the U.K., where it peaked at #6. I like this song a lot. It has a “Turn Your Love Around” vibe to it.

 

 

12. “Dead Giveaway” by Shalamar

Shalamar had limited success in the States, unfortunately. They should have been way bigger. But, our friends in the U.K. appreciated them! This song did do pretty well in the U.S., peaking at #22. But, it landed all the way up to #8 in the U.K. This was off of Shalamar’s album, The Look, which would be the final album with Jody Watley as part of the group as she would embark on a successful solo career.

 

11. “Lady Love Me (One More Time)” by George Benson

Here is another song that was moderately successful in the States (charting at #30 on the Billboard Hot 100, #21 on the Soul singles chart and #4 on the Adult Contemporary chart), but shot up the charts in the U.K., peaking right here at #11.

 

 


What a great list today! I think this was my favourite of the week so far. What do you think? I’d love to hear from you. We’ll take a day to take this all in, and wrap up the countdown on Friday.

Top 40 Songs This Week (UK Edition) – 19 June 1983: Songs 30-21

Logo: Tops of the popsWelcome back to this week’s Top 40 Countdown! If you missed the first 10 songs, you can go ahead and check them out. Today’s list has a lot of songs that were not big in the U.S., so they are new to a lot of us. And these are really good songs. It is always fun to discover new old music.
Again, you can click on the song title to get the YouTube video, and you can click on the album cover to get the song from Amazon. Now, let’s continue the countdown.


30. “Wherever I Lay My Hat (That’s My Home)” by Paul Young

This cover of the 1962 Marvin Gaye song was a huge hit for Paul Young in the U.K. It was a breakthrough song for him, and would go on to top the U.K. charts for 3 weeks. However, it did not fare well in the U.S., only peaking at #70. A few years later, this song was on the Ruthless People soundtrack.

29. “Looking At Midnight” by Imagination

Imagination is one of those bands that did not cross over well to the U.S., but were huge in the U.K. The English three piece band had a huge run in the early ’80s, scoring 9 Top 40 hits between 1981 and 1984. This song was one of them, peaking at 29.

28. “Can’t Get Used to Losing You” by The Beat

This song is a cover of the 1963 Andy Williams song. U.S. audiences know The Beat as The English Beat. This was done to avoid confusion with an American band called The Beat, which was active at the same time. This song was on The Beat’s 1980 album, I Just Can’t Stop It. It wasn’t released until 1983. This was at the same time that the band was breaking up. It was their fifth and final top ten UK hit, and their highest charting single release ever.

27. “Pills and Soap” by The Imposter

Mark this one under “You learn something new everyday.” I learned that The Imposter is a pseudonym that Elvis Costello used. This song was on Costello’s 1983 album, Punch the Clock which also featured “Everyday I Write the Book”.

26. “In a Big Country” by Big Country

The U.K. and the U.S. were on the same page with this one. The Scottish band would peak at #17, with this song, in both the U.K. and U.S. This song received heavy airplay in the early days of MTV.

25. “Rock ‘n’ Roll is King” by Electric Light Orchestra

Electric Light Orchestra (or ELO) moved back to their old-school rock roots with this song, after their progressive pop phase with Xanadu. This was another song that was a hit in both the U.S. and U.K. It peaked at #13 in the U.K. and #19 in the U.S.

24. “Confusion (Hits Us Every Time)” by Truth

the-truth-confusion-hits-us-every-time-wea-sThere is almost no information out there about this song, and it is not available on Amazon. But, I really like this one a lot. The Truth released several singles before their debut album in 1985. And this was one of those songs. This actually sounds like a 1979/80 ELO song.

 

 

23. “I.O.U.” by Freeez

This synthpop dance song was the biggest hit for Freeez. It would land at #2 on the U.K. charts. It did not chart on the mainstream chart in the U.S., but it did top the U.S. Club chart.

22. “Just Got Lucky” by JoBoxers

I had never heard of this song or band before. But, they did crack the Top 40 in the U.S. with this song, landing at #36. It would be a Top 10 hit in the U.K. peaking at #7.

21. “Take That Situation” by Nick Heyward

This is a fun little song by the Haircut 100 frontman. This song was on Heyward’s debut solo album, and was his biggest non-Haircut 100 song, peaking at #11 here.


That wraps up today’s list of songs. We are halfway through this week’s countdown. What do you think so far? We will be back to continue the countdown tomorrow.

Top 40 Songs This Week (UK Edition) – 19 June 1983: Songs 40-31

It’s been too long, so it’s time for a new Top 40 countdown! This week, we are going back over to the U.K. and checking out the top songs from this week in 1983. These are always a lot of fun. If you want to see the video/listen to the song on YouTube, you can click on the song title. You can click on the album cover to get the song from Amazon. Now, let’s begin this week’s countdown!


40. “Juicy Fruit” by Mtume

This title track from the funk and sould group Mtume’s (pronounced em-tu-may) third album was their most successful single. It had moderate success, but did not crack the top 40 pop charts in the U.S.

39. “War Baby” by Tom Robinson

British singer-songwriter Tom Robinson is a long-time LGBT rights activist. After the break-up of his band, Section 27, Robinson had financial troubles, which sent him in a depression. He moved to Germany, and played with East German band NO 55. According to Wikipedia,

Robinson describes writing the song, whilst stoned, after a bad experience at a gay sauna, he “…wrote straight down “only the very young and the very beautiful can be so aloof.” And the rest of it poured out onto the page, eight, ten pages of the stuff, just hand-written, stream of consciousness stuff. And it took about a year to get those ten pages down to something that you could actually sing in four minutes.”

He returned to the UK, recorded and released the song. It would go on to peak at #6 on the UK singles chart.

38. “What Kinda Boy You Looking For (Girl)” by Hot Chocolate

Best known for their 1975 smash hit “You Sexy Thing“, the British soul group, Hot Choclate, had a Top 10 UK hit with this song, peaking at #10.

37. “I Won’t Hold You Back” by Toto

This is most likely the first song on this week’s countdown that US audiences are familiar with. This power ballad barely scraped the Top 40 here in the UK. But, it was a Top 10 hit in the US. The song, from the classic Toto IV album, features the Eagles’ bass player Timothy B. Schmit on backing vocals during the choruses.

36. “She Works Hard for the Money” by Donna Summer

This worldwide hit is one of Donna Summer’s signature songs. Summer performed the song live as the opening of the 1984 Grammy Awards.

35. “True” by Spandau Ballet

This song was a worldwide smash hit, landing in the Top 10 in many countries. It was #1 here in the UK for 4 weeks. It is Spandau Ballet’s biggest hit and their only major hit in the US.

34. “It’s Over” by Funk Masters

One of my favorite things about doing these UK countdowns is catching a lot of R&B and Funk songs that did not get much airplay in the US in the ’80s. This mid-tempo song by the British group would peak at #8 in th eUK.

33. “Come Live With Me” by Heaven 17

Oh boy! This sounds like it is going to be a classic ’80s sounding synth-pop song. Turns out that it is a statutory rapey song.

It starts off with these lyrics:

I was thirty-seven
You were seventeen
You were half my age
The youth I’d never seen
Unlikely people meeting in a dream
Heaven only knows the way it should have been

And only gets worse from there! I think somebody needs to look into these songwriters (Glenn Gregory, Ian Craig Marsh and Martyn Ware).

32. “Temptation” by Heaven 17

The second Heaven 17 song in a row! It is rare to see 2 songs in a row by the same artist on any countdown. This isn’t as bad as the previous song…unless the “Temptation” is about that 17 year old. And now that I’m realizing that the name of this band is Heaven 17, I’m going to assume it is about a 17 year old. This band is gross.

31. “Candy Girl” by New Edition

Another song about a girl! However, this is more acceptable since boy band New Edition was more age appropriate. This was New Edition’s debut song. The group was first discovered and mentored by manager Brooke Payne. He decided to name them New Edition to signify they were a new edition of the Jackson 5. And this song does indeed sound like a Jackson 5 song, which is a good thing.


That wraps up today’s list of songs. We will continue the countdown tomorrow. What do you think so far?

Top 40 Songs This Week (UK Edition) – March 6, 1983: Songs 10-1

Well, here we are. The Top 10 songs in the U.K. this week in 1983. If you missed the previous songs, you can go back and check out songs 40-31, 30-21 and 20-11. There will be some very familiar songs on here for us in the U.S. However, there may still be some pleasant surprises. You can click on the song title to get to the song on YouTube, and you can click on the album cover to get the song from Amazon. Now, let’s Return to the week of March 6, 1983, and wrap up the countdown.


10. “Never Gonna Give You Up” by Musical Youth

While this British Jamaican reggae band had only 1 hit in the U.S. (“Pass the Dutchie”), they had several hits in the U.K. between 1982 and 1984. This was their second biggest hit, peaking at #6 on this U.K. chart.

 

9. “Love On Your Side” by Thompson Twins

Unlike Musical Youth, the Thompson Twins had several big hits in the U.S. But, this was not one of them. It did come close, peaking at #45. However, this was a top 10 hit in several other countries, including here in the U.K. where it peaked right here at #9.

 

8. “Tomorrow’s (Just Another Day)” by Madness

Here is another group that did not make it big in the U.S., with only two Top 40 hits. In the U.K., Madness was huge! And so was the group Madness. (my Brit friends get it) I wish this song made it over here in the U.S. I love it! “Our House” can really get stuck in your head, and this could have done the same.

 

7. “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye” by Bananarama

We should all know this song, at least from the original version by Steam. And any sports fan knows this song when their team is about to beat their opponent at home. This is a girl band version of it. I love everything Bananarama does. This was yet another song that did not hit big in the U.S., peaking at #101. But, it was a top 10 hit here, peaking at #5. This was the fifth single released from Bananarama’s debut album, Deep Sea Skiving.

 

6. “Too Shy” by Kajagoogoo

We all know this one, as it was a worldwide smash hit. It reached #1 in many countries, including the U.K. for 2 weeks. Not bad for a debut single from a debut album.

 

5. “Africa” by Toto

Another worldwide smash hit we all know. This is one of my favorites of the ’80s, and I still love it.

 

 

4. “Rock the Boat” by Forrest

Forrest is not known in the States. But we all know this song from the 1974 original by The Hues Corporation. Forrest does a great job with this. I wish it would have made it in the U.S. so I could hear it more often on 80s stations and shows.

 

3. “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” by the Eurythmics

OK, no more surprises as we go down the home stretch. This was the Eurythmics breakthrough song all over the world.

 

 

2. “Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson

Maybe it’s possible that some of you may know this song. It was only a top 10 hit in every country in the world that has music charts, and was #1 in almost all of them. Not only was this a worldwide smash in 1983, but it became a huge hit all over the world once again when Jackson died in 2009. It wasn’t reaching the top spot again in most places. But, it was a top 10 hit just about everywhere.

 

1. “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by Bonnie Tyler

And here we are at the #1 spot! This song was written by Jim Steinman, who is best known for being Meat Loaf’s producer. This was Bonnie Tyler’s biggest hit, topping the charts in several countries. I love this song, and most Steinman produced songs.

 


This was not planned, but it is definitely fitting that “Total Eclipse of the Heart” is the #1 song. I got the idea of doing the Top 40 this week from the U.K., from a conversation I had with my best friend, who happens to be from Wales, which is where Bonnie Tyler is from. Bestie and I were talking about music. I had already known that there are a lot of songs that were huge in the U.K, but never made it here. But, this got brought to the forefront of my mind from our conversation, as I did not know some bands Bestie brought up. And there were singers I heard of, but didn’t know they were in a band. So, I thought it would be great to discover great new music.

I hope you all thought this was a good idea. Please let me know if you’d like to see more of these. I’ll be back with a new countdown in the near future. Maybe it will be from the U.S. or from the U.K.

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Top 40 Songs This Week (UK Edition) – March 6, 1983: Songs 20-11

The countdown continues! If you missed the previous songs, you can go back and check out songs 40-31 and 30-21. Today, there are plenty more songs that I’m not familiar with, and a couple of songs I know, which both happen to be duets. As usual, you can click on the song title to see the YouTube video, and you can click on the album cover if you would like to get the song from Amazon. Now, let’s Return to the weeke of March 6, 1983, and continue this week’s U.K. countdown!


20. “Genetic Engineering” by Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark

This song peaked right here at #20, ending the band’s run of four consecutive Top 10 hits in the UK. If the synthesized talking sounds familiar to you, it is taken from a Speak & Spell. Even though this is totally different from “If You Leave”, I like this.

 

19. “Up Where We Belong” by Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes

This song, from the film An Officer and a Gentleman, was a world wide smash hit. With this song, Cocker and Warnes were awarded the Grammy for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals. This song won also both the Academy Award and Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song.

 

18. “High Life” by Modern Romance

This song makes me want to party on a tropical vacation.

 

 

 

17. “Hey Little Girl” by Icehouse

This song by the Australian group, Icehouse, peaked right here at #17. It was also a top 40 hit in the U.S. peaking at #31. I was not into New Wave back then, so this never crossed my radar.

 

 

16. “Change” by Tears for Fears

This was the band’s fourth single. It would eventually become the second hit from their debut LP The Hurting and second UK Top 5 chart hit. This is one of those songs that I didn’t think I knew, but remembered it when I just played it now.

 

15. “Get the Balance Right!” by Depeche Mode

This was the seventh single released by new wave legends, Depeche Mode. This is another song that I would not have cared for back in the day, but I love it now.

 

 

14. “She Means Nothing to Me” by Phil Everly and Cliff Richard

Cool song by two old school legends.The late Phil Everly was one of The Everly Brothers, and Cliff Richard was having a great career until The Beatles exploded on the scene. But he had a strong comeback later on. Cliff Richard is the third-top-selling artist in UK Singles Chart history, behind the Beatles and Elvis Presley.

 

13. “The Tunnel of Love” by Fun Boy Three

Very cool song! Fun Boy Three never made it big in the U.S., and were only around for a few years. But, they sound really good.

 

 

12. “Communication” by Spandau Ballet

I totally forgot about this one! I guess that can happen when the only song radio stations have been playing for the past 35 years is “True”. This was a top 20 hit in the U.S. as well. and it is way better than “True”!

 

11. “Baby Come to Me” by Patti Austin and James Ingram

Here’s one we all know! Upon it’s initial release, this song topped out at #73 on the U.S. charts. Then the song became the love theme for the character Luke Spencer on the popular daytime soap General Hospital. The song then became a #1 hit in the U.S., as well as a worldwide hit. It peaked right here at #11 in the U.K.


That wraps up today’s list of songs. I loved today’s countdown! What will tomorrow bring? Come back tomorrow, and find out what the biggest hits in the U.K. were this week in 1983. I guarantee you will know at least 1 song that will be in the top 10. Just look at the time period, and you know what album had been out.

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Top 40 Songs This Week (UK Edition) – March 6, 1983: Songs 30-21

Welcome back as we continue this week’s countdown! If you missed songs 40-31, you can go ahead and check them out. This is a lot of fun discover new old music! It looks like there are 2 songs that I know today. The rest is a mystery right now. Hopefully there will be more pleasant surprises. So let’s Return to the week ending March 6, 1983, and find out! And don’t forget, you can click on the song title to listen/watch the YouTube video, and you can click on the album cover to purchase the song from Amazon.


30. “Oh Diane” by Fleetwood Mac

This single from the Mirage album, was a big hit in the U.K., but did not chart in the U.S. This Linsdsey Buckingham tune sounds like a ’50s song. It’s not bad. It can’t touch anything from Rumours, but it’s not bad.

 

29. “Drop the Pilot” by Joan Armatrading

I never heard of Joan Armatrading before. She had 3 Top 40 songs in the U.K., and none in the U.S. This is actually her highest charting single in the U.S. topping out at #78. I love this song! I need to listen to more of her music, and see why she didn’t hit it big. This definitely should have been a bigger hit in the U.S.

 

28. “We’ve Got Tonight” by Kenny Rogers and Sheena Easton

Here is a familiar tune. It was a big hit in 1978 for Bob Seger, who also wrote the tune. But, Kenny Rogers and Sheena Easton crushed it, making it a #1 hit in the U.S., and making it a world wide hit, including here in the U.K.

 

27. “Sign of the Times” by The Belle Stars

While this is considered to be The Belle Stars’ signature hit (according to Wikipedia anyway), I only knew them from their cover of “Iko Iko”. I like this one. It is a good pop song.

 

 

26. “Shiny Shiny” by Haysi Fantayzee

OK, I’ll admit that I was a little nervous bringing this video up on YouTube, thinking that with a name like Haysi Fantayzee, that I would have a stripper dancing on my work computer. Luckily, Haysi Fantayzee is a group and not a person. This is a good New Wave song, with a totally ’80s sound.

 

25. “Numbers/Barriers” by Soft Cell

While Soft Cell is basically know for “Tainted Love” in the U.S., they had a string of hits in the U.K. The double A-sided single “Numbers” / “Barriers” failed to reach the Top 20, breaking the duo’s run of five consecutive Top 5 singles in the UK. But, it’s still not too shabby, peaking right here at #25.

 

24. “You Can’t Hide Your Love From Me” by David Joseph

This is a very cool Funk song. But, I cannot find any information about this song or artist anywhere.

 

 

23. “Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)” by Wham!

Here is a song that made it over to the U.S. This is an awesome song, best known for being Wham!’s debut single.

 

 

 

22. “Rip It Up” by Orange Juice

Not to be confused with Oran “Juice” Jones, Orange Juice was a Scottish post-punk band. This would be their only Top 40 hit in the U.K.

 

 

21. “Waves” by Blancmange

I’m liking this song by this English synth-pop band. I feel like this could have been in a John Hughes film.

 

 

 


That wraps up today’s list of songs. Lotso New Wave songs. I would have been uninterested back then, but I’m loving it now. We are already halfway through the countdown. What do you think so far? I’d love to hear from you. Come back tomorrow for the next 10 songs.

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Top 40 Songs This Week (UK Edition) – March 6, 1983: Songs 40-31

Hi Everybody, as promised, we are back with another countdown this week! The twist this week is that this will be a Top 40 from the U.K. charts. I have a lot of friends from the U.K., so I wanted to do a little something for them. And I thought it would be pretty cool for those of us in the U.S. There were a lot of awesome songs in other countries that did not make it over here for some reason or other. I have a feeling that a lot of us will be discovering new music this week. And ’80s kids from the U.K. will get to relive their glory days. As usual, if you’d like to purchase the song from Amazon, you can click on the album cover. And to watch the video/listen to the song, you can click on the song title. So, let’s get to it, Return to this week in 1983, and begin this week’s countdown from the U.K.


40. “Garden Party” by Mezzoforte

Right off the bat, we a get a song like I have never heard on a U.S. top 40 countdown. The closest may be Kenny G. Mezzoforte is an instrumental jazz-funk fusion band from Iceland. This would actually be the band’s biggest hit, and would chart all the way up to #17 on the U.K. charts. I am loving this song, and it’s a great way to kick off this countdown.

 

39. “Maggie” by Foster and Allen

Foster and Allen are a musical duo from Ireland consisting of Mick Foster and Tony Allen. This definitely has an Irish feel to it. But, it also sounds like an old school country song.

 

38. “Joy” by Band AKA

Despite this band being from Los Angeles, I had never heard of them. This is little disco/funk tune.

 

 

 

37. “Fields of Fire (400 Miles)” by Big Country

This is the first band I know of so far. However, I have never heard this song. If you like the song, “In a Big Country”, then you will like this one. It has a very similar sound.

 

36. “Last Night a DJ Saved My Life” by Indeep

This is another U.S. based group (out of New York) that I had not heard of. This is a cool disco/funk song. Now I can see why I never heard of this song. While it would land all the way up to #13 on the U.K. charts, it topped out at #103 on the U.S. charts.

 

35. “Midnight Summer Dream” by The Stranglers

When I saw the band name, I was hoping this was a punk rock band. I was correct. However, at this time, The Stranglers decided to change direction, so this is more of a new wavey sound. The music itself sounds like it could come from a Tarentino film. But, the “singer” talks through the entire song. Then almost 5 minutes in somebody is singing the same lyrics in the background as the narrator who is speaking. No thanks.

 

34. “Christian” by China Crisis

This song brought this new wave band into prominence in the U.K. as it went up to #12 on the charts. This is good if you like slow new wave music. I would have hated it back in the day, but I’m liking it now.

 

33. “Soweto” by Malcolm McLaren

I’m kind of digging this song. I never heard of Malcolm McLaren, but he sounded like quite the character. He was a visual artist, performer, musician, clothes designer and boutique owner. He was best known for being the promoter and manager of bands such as the New York Dolls and the Sex Pistols. This song sounds like it has an upbeat reggae beat.

 

32. “Down Under” by Men At Work

The first song I know! Do I really need to say anything about this? I’ll just smile and give you a Vegemite sandwich.

 

 

 

31. “Run for Your Life” by Bucks Fizz

Great way to end today’s list! I thought this was going to be a cover of the Beatles classic. But, it’s a different song. It sounds like Abba covering an ELO song. Very cool! I may need to look more into this group.

 


Well, that was a very cool start of the week. What do you think so far? If you know any interesting facts about the artists we have seen here, please comment below. I’d love to hear from you, and be educated. It’s looking like we will continue the countdown on Wednesday. Hope to see you then!

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Top 40 Songs This Week: August 27, 1983 – Songs 10-1

Hi Everybody! Welcome back as we finally conclude the countdown. I’m sorry it took so long to wrap this up, but sometimes real life happens. If you missed the previous songs, you can check out songs 40-31, 30-21, and 20-11. What a blast going down memory lane! Now, let’s Return to the week ending August 27, 1983, and wrap up the countdown.

And don’t forget, if you click on the song title, you can see the video of the song. If you click on the album cover, you can listen to or purchase the song on Amazon.


10. “China Girl” by David Bowie


The great David Bowie re-invented himself once again with the Let’s Dance album. This classic was the second song released off of that album. Bowie was one of the many of our 80s icons that passed away last year. He is missed.

9. “”I’ll Tumble 4 Ya” by Culture Club


Culture Club was one of the biggest acts in the early 80s. I was not on board with that at the time. But, now their music brings me some wonderful nostalgia.

8. “(Keep Feeling) Fascination” by The Human League


In my opinion, The Human League is very underrated. I really like this song a lot. It has that classic 80s sound. I also recommend their 2011 album, Credo. They still sound the same, which is great!

7. “Stand Back” by Stevie Nicks


This is a great signature song for Stevie Nicks’ solo career. Stevie is almost 70 and still going strong. In an interview with Rolling Stone, Stevie was asked how it felt to be turning 70 in 2 years. She said:

I don’t like that number. I see lots of people my age, and lots of people who are younger than me, and I think, “Wow, those people look really old.” I think it’s because they didn’t try. If you want to stay young, you have to make an effort. If I wanna walk onstage in a short chiffon skirt and not look completely age-inappropriate, I have to make that happen. Or you just throw in the towel and let your hair turn white and look like a frumpy old woman. I’m never gonna go there.

6. “It’s a Mistake” by Men at Work


In the early ’80s, there were very few acts that were as hot as Men at Work. This was the third single released from their Cargo album, and peaked right here at #6.

5. “Puttin’ On the Ritz” by Taco


This cover of the Irving Berlin song was a huge hit for Taco, eventually peaking at #4. This made Irving Berlin, then 95, the oldest ever living songwriter to have one of his compositions enter the top ten.

4. “She Works Hard for the Money” by Donna Summer


The disco queen, and fellow New Englander (Boston, MA), transitioned brilliantly into the ’80s, making this her signature song.

3. “Maniac” by Michael Sembello


This was another huge hit from the Flashdance soundtrack. The following year, he would release another song from a movie soundtrack – “Gremlins…Mega Madness“.

2. “Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)” by The Eurythmics


This song was so overplayed that I would cringe every time I’d hear The Eurythmics. Luckily, enough time has been removed that I really love their music. I have no problem skipping over this one though. But, I love anything else they do.

1. “Every Breath You Take” by The Police


Speaking of overplayed songs, this was the king of them. I clearly remembering listening to the year end countdown in December, and being so disappointed that this was the #1 song of the year. I love just about everything else from the Synchronicity album. But I guess I’m a weirdo. At least it’s better than a stalker.


That wraps up this week’s countdown. I hope you enjoyed this. There will definitely be more countdowns coming up. In the meantime, Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.

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Top 40 Songs This Week: August 27, 1983 – Songs 20-11

Welcome back to another installment of this week’s Top 40 countdown. If you missed the previous entries, you can check out songs 40-31 and 30-21. So far, it’s been a pretty good week. Let’s see if it continues. Let’s Return to the week ending August 27, 1983, and move on with the countdown.


20. “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by Bonnie Tyler


This smash hit by Bonnie Tyler is the second Jim Steinman song on this week’s countdown. This song still stands the test of time as I have heard it on several recent television commercials. And of course with the recent eclipse, the song has been getting even more airplay.

19. “Rock ‘n’ Roll Is King” by Electric Light Orchestra (ELO)


In the ’80s, there was a lot of nostalgia for the ’50s and ’60s. This song has that old time sound.

18. “Take Me to Heart” by Quarterflash


It is so refreshing to hear a Quarterflash song that is not “Harden My Heart”. They have several great songs, and this is one of them.

17. “Hot Girls in Love” by Loverboy


A good rocker. Loverboy was on a roll throughout the ’80s. Then grunge happened.

16. “Don’t Cry” by Asia


Time for the Prog Rock supergroup Asia! I always loved this song and band. This song did get a ton of MTV airplay.

15. “Is There Something I Should Know” by Duran Duran

I still think this should be called “Please, Please Tell Me Now”. Duran Duran was the ultimate ’80s group. This song is classic, just like the rest of their early 80s music.

14. “Lawyers in Love” by Jackson Browne


This song got by me. I had never heard it before. It isn’t too bad. This title track from Browne’s seventh album was the highest charted song from this album, which also includes “Tender Is the Night” – which I have heard of.

13. “Human Nature” by Michael Jackson


This pretty song was the 5th single released from the legendary Thriller album. They must have broken the budget with all the previous singles, because there is no music video for this. This song was written by Steve Porcaro (the keyboardist from Toto) and John Bettis.

12. “Tell Her About It” by Billy Joel


This was the first single released off of Billy Joel’s album, An Innocent Man. I loved it when it came out. Then got sick of it as it played on MTV constantly. Then I missed it when the follow-up single “Uptown Girl” got overplayed even worse.

11. “The Safety Dance” by Men Without Hats


This is one of the more iconic songs of the ’80s. There is no mistaking which decade this song belongs to. And no, perverts, this isn’t about safe sex. This is an anti-establishment song. The following is from a very cool article from Confessions of a Pop Culture Addict. Sam Tweedle interviewed the writer/lead singer of Men Without Hats, Ivan Doroschuk. Sam asked Ivan about the origins of the song. Ivan explained that “The Safety Dance” is a protest against bouncers stopping dancers pogoing to 1980s new wave music:

The inspiration for the song was from back in the days when Punk and “New Wave” were starting off and the discotheques were still playing disco music. But every now and then they’d slip in Blondie’s Heart of Glass or Rock Lobster by The B-52’s. Well, obviously, anybody who was into that kind of music would rush on the dance floor and start jumping up and down and would bang into the guys trying to do their disco two steps. I got thrown out of a lot of clubs because of that. So that’s basically the origin. I was kind of mad that they wouldn’t let me dance if I wanted to, so I took matters in my own hands and wrote an anthem for it.


That’s it for today. There were some very familiar songs, and others that don’t get much airplay on ’80s radio these days. Let’s see what tomorrow will bring when we wrap up the countdown.

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