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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Hi Everybody! Welcome back to another week of one-hit wonders, courtesy of Robert. Again, a quick disclaimer: these artists have only charted in the Top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S. only once. Some artists, such as today’s may have had hits in other countries. But, we are only including one hit wonders in the U.S. Now, here is Robert!
Yes, I am back with more One Hit Wonders of the ‘80s. I hope you have enjoyed the first ten songs and maybe even (re)discovered a few you have not heard in a while. This week I have five more comin’ at you – hope you enjoy this week’s selections.
Our House by Madness
1983 marks this English ska band’s only hit here in the U.S. Granted, they have achieved enormous success in their native England and other European countries, but #7 on the AT 40 charts is their highest (and only) single to break through here. This song was an enormous hit in Holland where I spent many of my summers living with my grandparents. I was lucky enough to have several Dutch friends who spoke perfect English and helped me learn Dutch so I could effectively communicate with my grandparents (who only knew the English curse words). We loved this song and listened to it hundreds of times. In 1983, at the tender age of fourteen, I probably did not fully understood why I liked this song – but now I do! “Our House” offers a idyllic look at middle class life. A large, close knit family is living together in a large house and working just to get by. It just a normal household:
Father wears his Sunday best
Mother’s tired she needs a rest
The kids are playing up downstairs
Sister’s sighing in her sleep
Brother’s got a date to keep
He can’t hang around
Nothing fancy or unusual here, just a glimpse into an everyday home. What I did not realize when I was a kid is that I would miss this easy growing up style of life. I, like most of us, took this time for granted – just like Madness:
I remember way back then when everything was true and when
We would have such a very good time such a fine time
Such a happy time
And I remember how we’d play simply waste the day away
Then we’d say nothing would come between us two dreamers
Man, do I miss those times! For the past twenty-five years I have tried to give my own four children a similar basis for their memories. I know very little about ska music, so it is the lyrics that touch me in this song.
Hi Everybody! We are long overdue for a new Top 40 Countdown. I am so excited for the NEW STAR WARS MOVIE, The Force Awakens, which will be released in a few weeks. New freakin’ Star Wars! As we count down the days of the release, I figure we can count down the top 40 hits from the week that the last Star Wars movie, of the original trilogy, was released. Return of the Jedi was released on May 25, 1983. This is going to be an incredible week of music. I snuck a peek at the list of songs, and I will go out on a limb and say that this may be the best Top 40 we’ve covered so far! So let’s get to it, and Return to the week ending May 28, 1983, and begin the countdown! And as with most of the music posts, you can click on the song title to listen to the song/watch the video.
This song totally brings me back to the early ’80s. It was in heavy rotation in the early days of MTV when we first got cable TV in “our house” (on the corner – not in the middle of our street). This was the lead single off of Madness’ fourth studio album, The Rise & Fall. It would be their biggest hit in the U.S., reaching up to #7.
The Queen of Rock is back in the countdown once again, with a little known hit. This song is off of Benatar’s Get Nervous album, which also had the hits “Shadows of the Night” and “Little Too Late“. “Looking for a Stranger” is a fun little rock song, which would fit in well for Robert’s new “Obscure hits” series if he covers Pat Benatar. She has a lot of hits that get a lot of airplay, but this is one does not get as much attention.
Not too many people were as big a star as Kenny Rogers in the late ’70s/early ’80s. This is another obscure hit that I love. My parents owned the We’ve Got Tonight album, which this song came off of. If I was in the mood for a good ballad, I would throw this album on the record player.
This is another classic ’80s song that got heavy airplay in the early days of MTV. At the time it was released, I didn’t care for the song too much. But, since it was on MTV, my eyes were glued to the TV watching this video anyway. I do appreciate it a little more now. This song was also my introduction to The Kinks.
Before I started doing these countdowns, the only Christopher Cross songs I knew were all the songs from his legendary debut album as well as “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do)“. But, he did have quite a few other hit songs, although I don’t believe many of them hit the top 10. This is a very good song I had not heard before. The very beginning reminds me of something that would be on a mid-’80s Sylvester Stallone movie soundtrack, until Cross starts singing. Then it is classic Christopher Cross (which is a good thing).
The only song I thought I knew by DeBarge was “Rhythm of the Night” and El Debarge’s “Who’s Johnny“. But, I remembered this song as soon as it started. I didn’t know it was DeBarge. This is an outstanding R&B ballad.
This was the biggest U.S. hit by British singer/songwriter Jim Capaldi, topping out at #28. That sounds about right. This song is ok. It’s not horrible, but not great either. Steve Winwood keyboards kick in in the second half of the song, which is cool. But, if I want to hear that, I may as well throw on some Steve Winwood.
I love the Bee Gees! This is a pretty good upbeat song. In the ’80s, the Bee Gees did not perform too many songs. They mainly wrote hits for other singers. But, they did record this song for the movie Staying Alive, the sequel to Saturday Night Fever. Staying Alive was one of those movies where the soundtrack was way better than the movie itself.
I enjoy a lot of songs by The Little River Band. This is a good one from the John Farnham years as lead singer. This song was from their seventh studio album, The Net. It topped out at #22 in the U.S. If you want to hear an outstanding John Farham solo tune, check out “You’re the Voice“.
This huge iconic Styx hit was the beginning of the end of the band’s initial run. Styx was changing musical direction, which caused a divide in the band. I still really enjoy this song to this day. And it’s a great place to finish today’s list of songs.
Well, that wraps it up for today. Are you liking this so far? It’s just going to keep on getting better. Is anybody else looking forward to The Force Awakens? I’m one of the rare original Star Wars fans that never hopped on the prequel-hate bandwagon. I love the prequels! But, they tell a different story and have a different style. I have a feeling that JJ Abrams is going to capture the same spirit as the original. And it doesn’t hurt that the main characters, that we grew up with, are returning.
So, let’s talk Star Wars and music. And we’ll be back to continue the countdown tomorrow.
Welcome back to this week’s Top 40! If you missed the first 10 songs, you can go ahead and check them out. Today we have a good mix of classic ’80s music and songs that are rarely, if ever, heard today on the ’80s stations. Let’s jump right into it now, Return to the week ending June 18, 1983, and continue the countdown.
We’ll begin today with some synth-pop New Wave music. I was not a fan back in the day. I do like A Flock of Seagulls more now. This isn’t one of their better songs, but it’s ok. I wouldn’t go out of my way to listen to it. But, if I heard it come on the radio, I would enjoy my trip back to the ’80s.
This was the lead single from Bryan Adams’ third studio album, Cuts Like a Knife. It was his big breakthrough song in the U.S. I have always loved this song. It is so great, and it takes me back. Bryan wrote this song in the late ’70s. Before he released it himself, it was covered by several people including Ian Lloyd and Rosetta Stone. And one month before Adams released it, Bonnie Tyler released it, and was featured on her album Faster Than the Speed of Night.
This is a pretty generic soft rock tune. However, one thing that stands out with this song is that Steve and Nicole Winwood performed the backing vocals, and Steve also played all the synthesizers, including the solo.
I love me some classic Rod Stewart! I can’t stand that big band crap he’s been doing for the past couple of decades. Geez, has it been that long since he’s done anything good? Man, time flies! This was Stewart’s final #1 hit in the UK. That kind of surprises me because he had some great songs throughout the ’80s, and into the early ’90s.
Here is an extra song that I would like to share. I came across it on the most recent episode of The Classic Rock and Metal Podcast. When you see the title, you’ll know why I’m sharing it (and the song lives up to it’s name:
“Another 80’s Rock Song (The Party Never Ends!)” by Madam X
In the ’80s, the Bee Gees were mainly either doing solo projects or writing songs for other people. But, they
did get together to record five songs for Staying Alive, the sequel to Saturday Night Fever. Their music was about as successful as the movie. I actually didn’t even know they recorded songs for that soundtrack. I was guessing that “Stayin’ Alive” was on there (it was). Other than that, all I knew was “Far From Over” by Frank Stallone.
Here is another R&B ballad. I like this one more than the DeBarge song. Before I started doing these countdowns, I never even heard of Champaign. After their 1991 album Champaign IV, they did not release another album until 2008. Since then, they’ve released 4 albums, with the most recent being last year – Eyes of the Spirit (2014).
The Little River Band was big in the late ’70s. This was one of the band’s last singles to reach the top 40. This was a transitional time for the band. This is from their seventh studio album, The Net. This album featured a new lead vocalist and new guitarist. This song isn’t too bad. It’s kind of middle-of-the-road. It’s not bad at all, but nothing really stands out either.