Tag Archives: Prince

Top 40 Songs This Week – April 5, 1986: Songs 10-1

Well we have arrived at our Top 10 of the week. If you missed the previous songs, check out songs 40-31, 30-21, and 20-11. This has been a fun week so far. So, let’s get this going, and Return to the week ending April 5, 1986, and wrap up this week’s countdown! And as usual, if you’d like to listen to the song on YouTube, click on the song title. And if you want to listen or buy this song on Amazon, you can click on the album cover.


10. “Nikita” by Elton John

Ah, the good ole days of the Cold War. Too bad those days are over, right? Right? Well, maybe we’ll get a Nikita ’18 update version this year.
One cool thing about this song that I didn’t know, is that George Michael and Nik Kershaw are on the backing vocals.

 

9. “Addicted to Love” by Robert Palmer

This is one of the most iconic music videos ever. The five models in the video are Julie Pankhurst (keyboard), Patty Kelly (guitar), Mak Gilchrist (bass guitar), Julia Bolino (guitar), and Kathy Davies (drums). Andy Taylor of Duran Duran (and a bandmate of Palmer’s from The Power Station) provides lead guitar.

 

8. “Let’s Go All the Way” by Sly Fox

This very cool song was the only Top 40 hit for Sly Fox, making them a one-hit wonder.

7. “Manic Monday” by The Bangles

This worldwide smash hit was The Bangles’ first hit single. It was originally intended for the group Apollonia 6 in 1984. And yes, that means it was written by Prince.

 

6. “What You Need” by INXS

This was the first Top 10 hit for INXS in the U.S. At the Countdown Music and Video Awards for 1985, in Australia, this won for Best Video.

 

 

5. “These Dreams” by Heart

This was the first Heart single on which Nancy Wilson performed lead vocals instead of Ann. It would also be Heart’s first number one hit on the Billboard Hot 100.

 

4. “Secret Lovers” by Atlantic Starr

This was was Atlantic Starr’s true breakthrough hit on the pop charts in both the US and UK.

 

 

3. “Kiss” by Prince & The Revolution

I still remember listening to the radio while playing a computer game, when the DJ said that they were going to play the new Prince song, “Kiss”, for the first time. It was exciting for me to be able to catch the debut of a song on the radio. I’ve been a fan of this song ever since.

2. “R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A.” by John Cougar Mellencamp

This is a fun rocker by Mellencamp, who had quite a good run of hit songs throughout the ’80s.

1. “Rock Me Amadeus” by Falco

And we have arrived at the #1 song of the week! Of course, it’s a song that will be stuck in your head the rest of the day. While Falco was wildly popular in Germany, his native Austria, and much of Europe, this was his only #1 hit in both the U.S. and U.K. With “Rock Me Amadeus”, Falco became the first German-speaking artist to be credited with a number-one single in all mainstream US pop singles charts: the Billboard Hot 100 and Cash Box Top 100 Singles. Prior to Falco, “99 Luftballons” by Nena got to number one on Cashbox, but peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100.


Well that wraps up this week’s countdown. I hope you enjoyed it. What were some of your favorite songs this week? And get your passports ready! The next time, we will go back to the U.K. to do a Top 40 there! Until then, Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.

Remember That Song: 1/16/18

Can you name the artist and song:

I can’t get
Any rest
People say
I’m obsessed


Last Song: “When Doves Cry” by Prince from the album Purple Rain (1984)

Great job Roy (@rbutt14) and Claude (@claudeingle)!!!

Touch if you will my stomach
Feel how it trembles inside
You’ve got the butterflies all tied up
Don’t make me chase you

If you’d like to purchase this song from Amazon, click on the album cover below:

Quote of the Day: Purple Rain

The Kid: I’d like to dedicate this to my father, Francis L. It’s a song the girls in the band wrote, Lisa and Wendy.

Purple Rain was released in theaters on this day (July 27) in 1984

 

If you’d like to watch this movie through Amazon, click on the poster below:

Remember That Song: 6/8/17

Can you name the artist and song:

I’ve wasted all my tears
Wasted all those years
And nothing had the chance to be good
Nothing ever could yeah


Last Song: “Alphabet St.” by Prince from the album Lovesexy (1988)
Prince would have turned 59 yesterday.

I’m gonna drive my daddy’s Thunderbird (My daddy’s Thunderbird)
A white rad ride, ’66 (’67) so glam it’s absurd

If you’d like to purchase this song from Amazon, click on the album cover below:

A Visit to Prince’s Home

Hi Everybody! Return to the ’80s own Robert Mishou recently traveled to Minnesota. As they say, When in Paisley Park, do as the Prince fans do. Robert was lucky enough to check out the late Prince’s home. Here is his trip report.

 


A Visit to Prince’s Home

by Robert Mishou

paisleyChanhassen, Minnesota is a moderately sized suburb southwest of Minneapolis. It looks like most American suburbs, but as you drive west on Audubon Road and near what appears to be the end of this small town near a big city – at around the 7800 block – to your left a large white complex looms. On the adjacent block sits a daycare and, as you look back toward that white complex, you sense the true size of what can easily be called a compound. This compound is Paisley Park, the home of Minneapolis native Prince. The house is not a castle that stands out from the rest of the neighborhood; instead it is a 65,000 square foot structure that it blends well with the surrounding homes. I had the great fortune of visiting Paisley Park a week ago. There was no way that a Prince fan can (or should) stay away from this music destination.

On his album Around the World in a Day, Prince has a song titled “Paisley Park”; in it he writes:

There is a park that is known
4 the face it attracts
Colorful people whose hair
On 1 side is swept back
The smile on their faces
It speaks of profound inner peace
Ask where they’re going
They’ll tell U nowhere
They’ve taken a lifetime lease
On Paisley Park

This is exactly what I felt as I anxiously entered the complex (and house). I was nervous with excitement as I walked through the very doors that Prince did on a regular basis. The family has clearly tuned this home into a museum and memorial to Prince himself – in fact, his ashes are kept on the second floor above the foyer where the tour begins. I am absolutely fine with the family doing this – it keeps Prince’s memory and music alive.

While I wait for the tour to begin, I am able to see gold and platinum albums decorating the walls that lead to the foyer. The foyer itself is a large open space with Prince’s symbol on a large marble floor and, visible from the foyer, on the second floor balcony is a bird cage with two doves in it – yes, doves. The doves are named Divinity and Majesty and coo softly as the group looks at more gold/platinum albums by Prince, as well as those produced by Prince or recorded as Paisley Park studios. Behind this foyer is a glass walled kitchen complete with a couch and TV where Prince watched basketball games. Across from the foyer there are three rooms: Prince’s office and two that have been made into homages to Prince’s albums Controversy and Sign o’ the Times. Each of theses rooms contain pictures, excerpts of album reviews, and outfits that Prince wore on the corresponding tour. The entire foyer is decorated in a cloud filled sky, giving off a warm, peaceful feeling. After about twenty minutes of exploring and reading time, the tour starts in earnest. I am lead to the studio.

prince-symbol

Paisley Park is completely outfitted with a full fledged recording studio. The soundproof room has a state of the art control/mixing board and three rooms use to isolate instrumental sounds. Each of the three rooms are equipped with instruments: a drum kit, a piano, and a guitar respectively. Prince recorded the albums Lovesexy, Batman, Diamonds and Pearls, in this studio as well as albums by Celine Dion, R.E.M., and Madonna. The final mix of the Bangles A Different Light was also done here (remember that Prince wrote “Manic Monday” under the pen name Christopher – a fact I gladly shared with my tour members). I have not been in too many recording studios, so I am not fully qualified here, but I was very impressed with the Paisley Park studio. It becomes apparent that Prince was able to create his music in this comfortable environment just a few steps away from his living room. A Paisley Park staff member played a song that Prince was working on before he passed; it was a jazz recording and the sound in that room was incredible.

What follows after the recording studio is a series of themed rooms. These rooms are designed as memorials to Prince’s films and the first one is the Purple Rain room. Before being converted, this large room was a basketball court (yes, Dave Chappelle is not far off). Presently, the musical numbers from the film play on the wall and the center of the room has the purple jacket that Prince wore in the film, the piano he played, and the motorcycle he rode. So far, I am feeling a bit overwhelmed with what I am seeing at Paisley Park, and I find myself not wanting to leave the Purple Rain room. Hearing the music while looking at actual pieces from the film is almost too much for me to take in. Unfortunately, I am not allowed to stay and I am moved on to the next room.

purple-rain

This next room is split in half to represent the films Under a Cherry Moon and Graffiti Bridge. I am not quite as taken by this room probably because these two films did not enthrall me as much as Purple Rain. The room is full of similar items – outfits, instruments, and the music from the films is playing, but it is not the Purple Rain room. I read and bounce my head in time to the music, but the feeling is not the same. Also, I think I am taking in too much about an artist that I have loved since 1983 – a little sensory overload is happening.

After this room I am lead down the hallway that displays Prince’s awards. Grammys, Oscars, and the MTV Astronaut are all on display here. This seems like a natural spot for some stats. Here is some of what Prince has accomplished:
32 Grammy nominations (7 Grammys)
1 Oscar
1 Golden Globe
2 albums in the Grammy Hall of Fame
12 MTV Video Music Award nominations (4 awards)
5 #1 songs on Billboard charts
13 times platinum for Purple Rain
100,000,000+ albums sold worldwide
Prince is the only artist to have a #1 album, single, movie, and tour at the same time

This leads to the final room: the concert hall. The enormous room is exactly that – a concert hall. The entire film Graffiti Bridge was filmed here and it hosted many shows and parties. Now, a loop of Prince in concert runs and the sound is excellent. Placed around the hall are four small stages that commemorate Prince’s tours. Each stage has an outfit and instrument that Prince used on the tour as well as a monitor playing live performances from the tour. This hall also contains two expensive/collectable cars that Prince owned and two large high back chairs from Prince’s possessions. I wandered around this room doing my best to take it all in. I was standing in the room that Prince rehearsed in before going on tour; the room that Prince hosted parties in; the room that other renowned artist used to perfect their craft. Overwhelmed? Yes, I was.

Since Paisley Park is now really a museum, it does end with a gift shop – and I had to get SOMETHING. I did purchase the official Paisley Park photo book, mostly because no one is allowed to take picture while in Paisley Park (they even confiscate your phone upon entering). I also bought a keychain as a small memory of my visit. When Prince passed, fans left artwork and other memory keepsakes, now, all of these items are on display on a ‘fence’ around the gift shop; to me, this is a fantastic way to permanently recognize how fans feel about Prince.

paisley-2

I begrudgingly left Paisley Park. I slowly walked to my car, looking back countless times, not really wanting to leave. My experience was all I had hoped for. I was able to bask in my Prince fandom for one hour and ten minutes. No, it wasn’t perfect – I wanted more time. The $38.50 it cost to get in was worth it, but I wanted more. I wanted to take the pictures that I wanted to preserve my own memories. Note: the pictures I have included were clearly taken from the outside- after I snapped a few, a security guard asked me to stop and show my entrance ticket. The tour guides were not as knowledgeable as I had hoped (only one seemed to actually be a Prince fan). I loved being with my tour group and listening in and sharing Prince memories and tidbits of information. While I understand the personal nature of Paisley Park being Prince’s home, I wanted to see the whole thing, not just the museum-fied parts. So saying, I do not and will never regret going. Paisley Park was something I felt that I needed to see. My wife, who accompanied me, does not quite understand this, but she was a good sport and feigned a bit of interest and said she enjoyed it. I will always recommend Paisley Park to Prince fans, or even ‘80s music fans. I hope that it remains open to the public long enough so that I can take my best friends there and we can revisit our Prince memories together. In my heart I am glad I went to Paisley Park and I will never forget the experience.

If you are heading to the Minnesota area, you can get tickets and information at the following website. Paisley Park is open Thursday through Sunday and you will be able to pick your time when you purchase tickets: https://officialpaisleypark.com/


Have you been to Paisley Park? You can leave your story in the comments section below, or email us at Returnto80s@gmail.com.

Remember That Song: 12/14/16

Can you name the artist and song:

Even if heaven and earth collide tonight
We’ll be all alone in a different light
I don’t care what the world can’t see


Last Song: “A Love Bizarre” by Sheila E. from the album Romance 1600 (1985)

Great job Brent (@jonbrent13) and SthrnDixieCwgrl (@SthrnDixieCwgrl)!!!

We all want the stuff that’s found in our wildest dreams
It gets kinda rough in the back of our limousine

Top 10 Protest or Socially Conscious Songs from the ‘80s – Sign o’the Times by Prince

Sign o’the Times by Prince

by Robert Mishou

I love me some Prince! Return to the ‘80s has done a podcast on him and he has been written about on this very blog. In December I will be in Minneapolis for a few days and I am going to make a side trip to see Paisley Park. Prince has so many great songs, but on this one he leaves the fun behind and confronts more serious issues. What issues, you ask. These:

In France, a skinny guy died of a big disease with a little name
By chance his girlfriend came by a needle and soon she did the same
At home there are seventeen year old boys and their idea of fun
Is being in a gang called the Disciples
High on crack, totin’ a machine gun

Pretty weighty issues for the same guy who recommended that we all go crazy. Prince has definitely revealed his more serious side before this, though, in songs like the classic Purple Rain. This song continues it’s serious look at societal problems:

Hurricane Annie ripped the ceiling of a church and killed everyone inside
You turn on the telly and every other story is telling you somebody died
A sister killed her baby ’cause she couldn’t afford to feed it
And yet we’re sending people to the moon
In September, my cousin tried reefer for the very first time
Now he’s doing horse, it’s June, unh

Drugs. Violence. Hypocrisy. Prince gives us a rather scathing look at the world we live in. Not wanting to be a complete pessimist, Prince does offer us a suggestion of hope, “Let’s fall in love, get married, have a baby / We’ll call him Nate, if it’s a boy.” Prince is an excellent songwriter and Sign o’the Times is yet another example of how his songs influenced, represented, and ruled the decade.

Top 40 Songs This Week – November 10, 1984: Songs 10-1

Welcome back as we wrap up this week’s countdown. If you missed the previous songs, you can go back and check out songs 40-31, 30-21, and 20-11. If you are in the U.S., I hope this countdown has provided a little escape from the election day craziness. This has been a great week of music. For those of us who grew up around the time of this countdown, we were so lucky to enjoy some great music. Now let’s Return to the week ending November 10, 1984, and wrap up this countdown.


10. “Desert Moon” by Dennis DeYoung

Earlier in the countdown, we had a song by Tommy Shaw in the wake of the band Styx falling apart. Now we have the former Styx frontman, Dennis DeYoung with his solo effort. This is an outstanding song, that would peak right here at #10.

9. “Hard Habit to Break” by Chicago

Thanks to producer, David Foster, we were right in the middle of Chicago’s renaissance. I do get slightly annoyed that most people only know of Chicago from their power ballads, even though they have some incredible rock songs. But, with a song like this, I can totally see why. This is one of my favorites by them. I love that both Peter Cetera and Bill Champlin sing on this. I love both of their voices. Great combination!

8. “Blue Jean” by David Bowie

David Bowie (still can’t believe he is gone) was still making an impact on the music world at this point. This song was off of his Tonight album, which was his follow-up to the mega-successful Let’s Dance album. This song was launched with a 21-minute short film, Jazzin’ for Blue Jean. The film won the 1985 Grammy Award for “Best Video, Short form” (Later renamed “Best Music Video”), which would be Bowie’s only competitive Grammy Award during his career. He was nominated for several, but this was his only win, in addition to his Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006.

7. “Better Be Good to Me” by Tina Turner

This song is from Tina Turner’s huge comeback album, Private Dancer. This song was originally recorded and released in 1981 by Spider, a band from New York City with one of the co-writers, Holly Knight, as a member. Of course Tina had the most successful version. The song won Tina Best Rock Vocal Performance, Female, one of four Grammys awarded to Turner in that ceremony.

6. “Out of Touch” by Daryl Hall & John Oates

There weren’t too many acts as big in the ’80s as Hall & Oates.This was their lead single from their 1984 album Big Bam Boom. It would be their last #1 hit. The song was also their 14th straight top 40 hit since 1980.


Before we continue, let’s see what was topping some of the other charts this week in 1984:

The number one country song was “I’ve Been Around Enough to Know” by John Schneider (Yes, that John Schneider from The Dukes of Hazzard)

Topping the Rock charts was “I Can’t Hold Back” by Survivor

Number one on the Adult Contemporary charts was “What About Me?” by Kenny Rogers, Kim Carnes and James Ingram

The Number 1 album was Purple Rain by Prince and the Revolution

And topping both the R&B and the Dance charts is our #5 song on the Hot 100 this week:

5. “I Feel For You” by Chaka Kahn

While Prince was a megastar performer himself, he also wrote music covered by other artists. This was one of them. Prince wrote this song, and it was on his debut album. It was also covered by The Pointer Sisters on their 1982 album, So Excited!.
Then Chaka Kahn took over, and this song would start a big comeback for her. Melle Mel (from Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five) did the rapping. And Stevie Wonder is on the harmonica.

4. “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” by Wham!

This was Wham!’s big breakthrough hit. It became their first American and UK number-one hit. To be honest, I really hated this song when it first came out. I like it now because of its nostalgic value. It should also be noted that while it was at the top of the charts for two weeks, it prevented the next song from becoming a #1 hit…

3. “Purple Rain” by Prince

Yes, perhaps Prince’s signature song, this never hit #1 (still can’t believe he is gone). That doesn’t change anything though. This is an iconic song of the decade. For a lot of people, when you mention the ’80s, one of the first images that come to mind is the cover of the Purple Rain soundtrack and movie poster. And if you listened to our Prince episode of the Return to the ’80s podcast, you would know that there is a Journey connection here. After recording the song, Prince phoned Jonathan Cain from Journey asking him to hear it, worried it might be too similar to “Faithfully“, a Journey single composed by Cain which had recently been in the charts. Cain reassured Prince telling him the songs only shared the same four chords. Prince was extremely sensitive to Copyright infringement. It’s good to see he put his money where his mouth was, and was careful himself.

2. “I Just Called to Say I Love You” by Stevie Wonder

This was one of Stevie Wonder’s most commercially successful hits. It was featured in the Gene Wilder (still can’t believe he’s gone) movie The Woman in Red. The ballad won both a Golden Globe and an Academy Award for Best Original Song. It was also nominated for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, Song of the Year and Best Pop Instrumental Performance at the Grammy Awards.

1. “Caribbean Queen (No More Love On The Run)” by Billy Ocean

I always loved Billy Ocean’s voice. This is a good one. It won Ocean the 1985 Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance, making him the first British artist to win in that category.


Well that wraps up this week’s Countdown. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I have. Did you have any favorites or least favorites? Let’s do another one of these in the coming weeks. In the meantime, Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.

Top 40 Songs This Week – November 10, 1984: Songs 40-31

Welcome back to another week of Top 40 music! I am so worn down by this election season. And now it’s time to celebrate the end of this disgusting chapter in U.S. politcs. And what better way to celebrate than to take a shower, and listen to some great music. And this is going to be a great week of music! We are Returning to the week ending November 10, 1984. This week we had just elected Ronald Reagan to his second term as president. I was only 14 at the time, but I don’t remember the campaign being so dirty back then. So let’s go there, and Return to the week ending November 10, 1984, and begin the countdown.

[Reminder: If you want to hear the song/watch the music video, you can click on the song title]


40.”Tears” by John Waite

This was John Waite’s follow-up to “Missing You“, and was overshadowed. That is a shame because this is a pretty good song. It kind of sounds like a song Bryan Adams would do. A good mid-tempo rocker. Not a bad way to begin the countdown.

39. “Cover Me” by Bruce Springsteen

This song was the second single released from Bruce’s classic Born in the U.S.A. album. It was originally written for Donna Summer, but Jon Landau, Springsteen’s manager, thought the song was a potential hit. So he kept it for the upcoming Springsteen album.

38. “Hello Again” by The Cars

This was the fourth single released off theCars’ classic Heartbeat City album. The video was directed by Andy Warhol. This song is part of the opening montage of the Return to the ’80s podcast.

37. “We Are the Young” by Dan Hartman

There is not much denying which decade this song is from! This song was Dan “I Can Dream About You” Hartman’s last #1 dance tune. I wish dance music these days sounded like this!

36. “Sugar Don’t Bite” by Sam Harris

I never heard of this song before. It sounds like Loverboy played on high speed. Sam Harris was the grand champion singer of Star Search in its premiere season in 1983.

35. “Girls With Guns” by Tommy Shaw

After the band Styx melted down following the Kilroy Was Here album, Tommy Shaw struck out on his own for a while. This was his debut single, and what a way to start!

34. “Drive” by The Cars

It didn’t take long for The Cars to make another appearance on this countdown! This was the third single released from Heartbeat City. This is a little different sounding Cars song. Not only is it a ballad, but instead of Ric Ocasek singing lead, the band’s bassist, Benjamin Orr sang lead. The music video was directed by actor Timothy Hutton. It is mainly known for featuring model Paulina Porizkova, who would later become Ric Ocasek’s wife.

33. “Valotte” by Julian Lennon

This title track to Julian Lennon’s debut album was his first single released in the U.S. It may be a blessing and a curse that he looks and sounds like his legendary father.

32. “Let’s Go Crazy” by Prince & The Revolution

downloadThis is one of my favorite Prince songs. Still can’t believe he’s gone. This song was the opening track on the Purple Rain soundtrack as well as the film.

31. “We Belong” by Pat Benatar

What a great way to end today’s list of songs! This is one of my favorite Benatar tunes. This was the lead single off of her 1984 album Tropico. The song earned Benatar a Grammy nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance alongside Linda Ronstadt, Tina Turner, Madonna, and Whitney Houston (won by Whitney).


Well that wraps up today’s list of songs. Not a bad way to start the week, right? Is everybody else ready for this election season to end too? We’ll be back tomorrow to continue the countdown.

Remember That Song: 9/15/16

Can you name the artist and song:

Oh you feel oh so trapped and confused
Start with nothing
You got nothing to lose


Last Song: “Purple Rain” by Prince and The Revolution from the album Purple Rain (1984)

Claudia (@ClaudiaWebers), Rach (@DarkDemonHeart), Karina (@WillieSun), Brent (@jonbrent13), and southernhon (@peacesong464)!!!

I never wanted to be your weekend lover
I only wanted to be some kind of friend
Baby, I could never steal you from another
It’s such a shame our friendship had to end