Hi Everybody! Welcome back to this week’s countdown! Some things that happened around this time were:
– Martina Navratilova earns 8th Wimbledon singles title with a 7-5, 6-3 win over Steffi Graf
– Also at Wimbledon, Pat Cash of Australia scores his only Grand Slam singles success 7-6, 6-2, 7-5 over Ivan Lendl
– A’s 1st baseman Mark McGwire becomes first rookie to hit 30 HRs before the MLB All-Star Game
– Nazi Klaus Barbie, “Butcher of Lyon” sentenced to life in France
– Kitty Dukakis reveals an addiction to amphetamines for 26 years
– Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North begins public testimony at Iran-Contra hearing
– Kiwanis Clubs end men-only tradition, vote to admit women
Today’s list of songs will have some songs that you know very well, as well as other songs that you may have never heard of, or may have forgotten about. So let’s Return to the week ending July 12, 1987, and continue the UK countdown
This song was never released in the U.S. It would go on to reach #27 on this U.K. chart. According to Wikipedia, the song’s lyrics, as written by Robert Smith, were inspired when Smith caught a broadcast of the Sylvester Stallone written film ‘Rocky 2’ in which Rocky’s wife Adrian falls into a coma during childbirth. In a desperate hope to revive his wife, Rocky writes a poem for Adrian which at one point reads “…..and you kept trying to slip so I could catch you….”
Here is another worldwide smash hit. This song hit #1 in both the US and the UK, as well as several other countries. In addition to appearing on the Mannequin soundtrack, the song was also released on Starship’s album No Protection.
This is a cover of Gary Glitter’s 1977 song. Shakin’ Stevens had been recording music since the 1960’s. But, he didn’t hit it big until the ’80s. Then he would go on to be the UK’s biggest-selling singles artist of the 1980s
This song was originally released in 1982, and would be Simple Minds’ first UK hit, reaching #13, and staying on the charts for 11 weeks. Then this live version would hit the charts again, coming off their 1987 album Live in the City of Light.
Nothing’s stopping ANYBODY in 1987! Earlier, Starship announced that nothing’s gonna stop us now, and now Samantha proclaims that nothing’s gonna stop me now. This is another song that did not chart very well in the US, but did better in the UK. However, I was very familiar with this song by one of my biggest 80s crushes. This song was off of Samantha Fox’s self-titled album, which also featured the hit song, “Naughty Girls (Need Love Too)”. There is not a bad song on that album.
I am noticing that quite a few reissues are making the charts in the UK this week. And they are all great songs! I absolutely love this 1967 #1 hit by Jackie Wilson! 20 years later, it would chart again in this countdown, reaching up to #15.
That wraps up today’s list of songs. I think I like today’s even more than yesterday’s. What are some of your favorites this week? I hope you are enjoying this countdown. We are halfway through. Come back tomorrow as we continue the countdown.
Welcome back as we continue the countdown! If you missed the previous songs, you can go back and check out songs 40-31. This has been a good countdown so far. So let’s Return to the week ending April 5, 1986, and continue the countdown.
This is one of my favorite Bob Seger songs. This is one of those misunderstood songs. It is not a patriotic song. It is about cocaine abuse. In an interview with the New York Times, Seger said, “I wrote it after reading ‘Wired,’ Bob Woodward’s biography of John Belushi. That was two and a half years ago, when there was a lot of publicity about cocaine abuse in show business. At the time, I thought that it was just a trend that would quickly die out and that the song would be out of date when it came time to record. But the situation has gotten worse. Maybe cocaine isn’t quite as fashionable on the East and West Coasts these days, but the plague has spread into the heartland — into the Middle West and the South. The key line in ‘American Storm’ is ‘You never feel the need.’ You never feel anything when you’re on drugs. You’re numb. You’re afraid to feel for one reason or another, and that’s why you turn to drugs. I want to see people not do that.”
I loved Janet Jackson. But, whenever I hear this song, this is the first thing that comes to mind [keep in mind that this is Eddie Murphy. So if you’re listening at work, make sure your headphones don’t pop out]:
That wraps up today’s list of songs. I’m really liking this countdown so far! What do you think. Do you have any favorite songs so far. Any surprises you forgot about? Come back tomorrow as we continue the countdown!
Here is a wrap-up of the Horrible and Great hits of the ’80s. I threw all the songs from my previous lists of each year, and picked my least favorite and favorite songs of the decade.
So, this is basically a Greatest Hits compilation of the Hits – Horrible and Great series.
The Horrible Hits came quite easy to me, and fell right into place. My favorites were a little tougher. They are always rotating in and out. Since I love so much ’80s music, it is difficult leaving some songs off the list.
Well, without further adieu:
10. If This Is It – Huey Lewis and The News
Stick with the up-tempo songs, Huey! I loved every song on the Sports album – except for this one. It’s slow, boring, and there’s no feeling in it.
9. Harden My Heart – Quarterflash
This is one of the most overplayed ’80s songs out there. I’ve heard this song more in the past couple of years than I did during the entire ’80s decade! And it’s not even on my iPod! This may not have made the list if it were not so overplayed. This song is a little to slow for me, but not slow enough to be a good ballad. I can’t change the station fast enough when it comes on the radio.
8. Two Hearts – Phil Collins
I love Phil Collins, but this was probably the most overplayed among his overplayed songs.
7. Smooth Operator – Sade
The Stuck in the 80s guys were told to keep this song off their Horrible list. It did sound like they wanted it on there though. So, I will place it on my list yet again. Is this even a song? It is more like slow torture! Slow, slow torture.
6. True – Spandau Ballet
Ah, Ah-Ah-ah, AAAAAAARRRGGGHHHH!!! I can’t stomach this song. It is too boring, and it high on some kind of wuss factor. I’ll have to admit that it was funny seeing Steve Buscemi singing this song at the end of The Wedding Singer:
Unfortunately, since the song was included in the movie, it was also included on the movie’s soundtrack. Why didn’t they leave this song off, and put on “Do You Believe In Love”?
5. Stand – R.E.M.
This song is like a whiny “Hokey Pokey”. The only song I liked by R.E.M. was “What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?”, and then they disappeared.
4. Red Red Wine – UB40
Neil Diamond was a great songwriter. But, this was not one of his better songs, that’s for sure! I don’t know why it was remade, and I don’t understand why this was a hit. This is another song that comes on, and I can’t change the station fast enough.
3. Mandolin Rain – Bruce Hornsby and the Range
Bruce Hornsby has a unique sound on his piano. Unfortunately, every song I’ve heard by him sounds exactly the same. And they are all horrible. I can’t turn this song off fast enough as soon as I hear it.
2. The Girl Is Mine – Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney
Two of the greatest music artists of all time took the biggest dump on the biggest album of all time! Uggh, this song makes me want to rip my ears off and rip all the skin off my face! The “doggon” song bites the big one! Especially when they start yapping in the song. This song should be taken off of all copies of Thriller, and be replaced by “Say, Say, Say”.
1. Don’t Worry, Be Happy – Bobby McFerrin
How can I be happy when this crap comes on the radio!? Don’t tell me what to do, Bobby McFerrin! I was perfectly happy until this song came on and annoyed the crap out of me. Ooooooo! There’s no instruments. He makes all the sound effects with his mouth! Impressive! If I want that, I don’t have to subject myself to this dreck. I’ll just put on some Police Academy to watch Michael Winslow.
10. Lost In Your Eyes – Debbie Gibson
My favorite Debbie Gibson song. Even people who weren’t into the teen music, at the time, liked this song. It is still great today.
9. Hard Habit to Break – Chicago
I still love this Chicago ballad! This was in the middle of their comeback during the David Foster years. I got sick of “You’re the Inspiration”, but I never got sick of this song. Unfortunately, the band became known more for their ballads. Their rock songs are just as good. But, “Hard Habit to Break” is one of my all time favorite Chicago songs.
8. Down Under – Men At Work
This song was a breakthrough for Men At Work, and basically introduced the U.S. to Australia and vegemite sandwiches. This is a fun song, and Colin Haye has a great unique voice. The band had a great string of hits. Will they get back together already?!
7. Hungry Like the Wolf – Duran Duran
This song got a lot of people into Duran Duran. The exposure on MTV didn’t hurt either. I liked it when it came out because the video reminded me of Raiders of the Lost Ark. But, even without the video, the song itself is really good.
6. Like a Prayer – Madonna
This was Madonna at the peak of her career. This is my favorite song by her.
5. Here I Go Again – Whitesnake
This is a great song without the video. But, much like “At This Moment” is linked with Family Ties, “Here I Go Again” will forever be linked with the video and Tawny Kitaen. How many of us guys wished that we were that car?!? 24 years later I still love this song. It stands the test of time for me.
4. Pour Some Sugar On Me – Def Leppard
A perfect rock anthem. This is a fun song, that really rocks, and is still popular today. With all the great smash hits that Def Leppard has, this is one of the best.
3. The Living Years – Mike and the Mechanics
A really emotional song that packs quite a punch. Paul Carrack sounds great. The music and message are just awesome.
2. Don’t You (Forget About Me) – Simple Minds
The ultimate ’80s song from the ultimate ’80s movie. You can’t think of one without the other. It even has staying power as this song is played while the losing American Idols are being booted. This song does get played alot, but somehow I cannot get sick of it.
1. Don’t Stop Believin’, Journey
“Don’t Stop Believin'” is one of my all time favorite songs, even after all these years. Everybody still gets into this song. And a new generation has even found it, as it became extremely popular from the television show Glee. Don’t Stop Believin’ this song will live on forever.
10. Walking on Sunshine – K.C. and the Sunshine Band
9. Neutron Dance – Pointer Sisters (vetoed by Steve)
8. All I Need – Jack Wagner (vetoed by Cathy)
7. Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go – Wham!
6. Wild Boys – Duran Duran
5. One Night In Bangkok – Murray Head
4. Some Like It Hot – Power Station (vetoed by Cathy and Steve)
3. Sea of Love – The Honeydrippers
2. We Built This City – Starship
1. We Are the World – U.S.A. For Africa
This was a tough one for me. There were so many horrible songs from 1985, and there were so many great ones. But, I was finally able to compile my list, so here is my top 5 (or worst 5) of Horrible songs from that year:
5. Money for Nothing – Dire Straits
This is one of the most overrated songs of the ’80s. Sure, the video was different from anything else at the time. And MTV is mentioned in the song. This was the perfect storm for the video to play in a seemingly endless loop for a long time on MTV. This would have been my #1 for most horrible song, if not for the awesome guitar lick at the beginning of the song. Once that guitar part is done, I go off in a daze, and forget that it’s on.
4. Everytime You Go Away – Paul Young
I never cared much for this song at all. It was too boring for me. This song might not be on too many peoples’ lists of horrible songs, but I have a personal grudge against this song. As some longtime Return to the ’80s readers may know, I served in the military. The day I left, the recruiter picked me up at home to send me off to boot camp. I got in the car, and as we were pulling away, this song came on. Since this song mocked me, it is now on my Horrible list.
3. Solid – Ashford and Simpson
Typical song that lands on my Horrible list – boring and overplayed. I would have to turn off the radio whenever this song came on. I may be in the minority here, but I don’t like too many of this songwriting duo’s songs, including “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”, “Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing”, and “I’m Every Woman”.
2. Smooth Operator – Sade
The Stuck in the 80s guys were told to keep this song off their Horrible list. It did sound like they wanted it on there though. So, I will place it on my list. Is this even a song? It is more like slow torture! Slow, slow torture.
1. Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go – Wham!
Ecchhhh. Wham! ranks right up there with Culture Club as one of my least favorite groups. The only song I don’t mind by them is “Freedom”, so at least there’s that. I wasn’t sure if “Wake Me Up..” or “Careless Whisper” would be my #1 Horrible song. Since this song is played the most on the 80s on 8 radio station, and on all radio stations that play 80s songs, “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” wins. Once you hear this crappy song, it sticks with you, whether you like it or not.
Kool and the Gang may be best known for their party anthem – “Celebration”. But, their Emergency album is incredible, and “Misled” is perhaps the best of the bunch. Great rockin’ song.
5. Neutron Dance – Pointer Sisters
You can’t help but want to move to this song. “Neutron Dance” was the Pointer Sisters’ fourth top ten single in a row, which was on their album Break Out. It was also featured in Beverly Hills Cop. I love the Pointer Sisters, and this song is right up there among my favorites.
4.Crazy for You – Madonna
This was Madonna’s first ballad, which came off of the great Vision Quest soundtrack. This song was surrounded with controversy at the time. The Vision Quest soundtrack was on Geffen Records, and Warner Brothers had just released Madonna’s Like a Virgin album. Warner Brothers did not want “Crazy For You” released as a single, as it would take attention away from Like a Virgin. But Geffen producers Jon Peters and Peter Guber were able to convince Warner to greenlight the single. As a result, Madonna was able to prove that she had more talent than your typical attention-getting pop star. I believe that due to the fact that she could sing different styles of music, this song went a long way in making her an 80s icon.
3. I Can’t Hold Back – Survivor
This is one of my favorite songs by Survivor. This came off the great Vital Signs album, which was their first with lead singer Jimi Jamison. They had other hit songs from this album, such as “High On You” and “The Search Is Over”, but “I Can’t Hold Back” is my favorite. It was featured prominently in the recent movie “Paul Blart: Mall Cop“, which made it the best part of the movie.
2. Summer of ’69/Heaven – Bryan Adams
I had a hard time deciding which Bryan Adams song to throw on here, so why not add both? Summer of ’69 is a great rocker. I’m sure we can all relate to looking back at the “good ole days”, or you wouldn’t be reading this. And “Heaven” is a great ballad. It is a nice slow-dance song.
Summer of ’69
1. Don’t You (Forget About Me) – Simple Minds
The ultimate ’80s song from the ultimate ’80s movie. You can’t think of one without the other. It even has staying power as this song is played while the losing American Idols are being booted. This song does gte played alot, but somehow I cannot get sick of it.