Today’s song is “For Your Eyes Only” by Sheena Easton. “For Your Eyes Only” is the theme to the 12th James Bond movie of the same name, written by Bill Conti and Mick Leeson. It reached number four on the US Billboard Hot 100, and number eight on the UK Singles Chart. It was also nominated for Best Original Song at the Academy Awards in 1982.
“9 to 5” was Easton’s first single release in the United States, which was renamed “Morning Train (Nine To Five)” for its release in the US and Canada to avoid confusion with Dolly Parton’s hit movie title song “9 to 5“. “Morning Train (Nine to Five)” became Easton’s first and only number 1 hit in the US and topped both the Billboard Hot 100 and Adult Contemporary charts in Billboard magazine. “Modern Girl” was released as the follow-up and peaked at number 18.
Bill Conti – who was also responsible for the Bond film’s score – had originally written “For Your Eyes Only” thinking about Donna Summer or Dusty Springfield, singers he thought “fit the Bond style”. Film studio United Artists suggested Sheena Easton, an up-and-coming singer who had just recently had a couple of hits.
Easton is the only artist (to date) to be seen singing the theme song to a Bond movie during its opening titles. The song was released as a single in June 1981, at the same time as the film’s launch. It became a worldwide hit, reaching the top ten in the UK, number 1 in the Netherlands and top five in the US (peaking at #4). It remains one of Easton’s biggest hits.
In honor of the 35th anniversary of the release of Jody Watley’s self-titled debut solo album, today’s Song of the Day is Jody’s “Looking for a New Love”. It was released in January 1987 as the first single off of that album. The single hit number two for four consecutive weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 in May 1987 and spent three weeks at number-one on the Billboard R&B chart. In case you’re curious, it was stuck behind Cutting Crew’s “(I Just) Died in Your Arms” and U2’s “With or Without You” for two weeks each. But, the song one of the biggest pop and R&B singles of 1987.
At the 30th Annual Grammy Awards of 1988, Watley won the award for Best New Artist (beating out Breakfast Club, Cutting Crew, Terence Trent D’Arby and Swing Out Sister), and was nominated for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.
Contrary to popular belief, the catchphrase “Hasta la vista, baby” did not originate from Arnold Schwarzenegger in the movie Terminator 2: Judgment Day – it originated as a lyric from this song, released four years prior to T2.
Other guys will have me, they’ll appreciate my love
Tell me, how does it feel?
Now you’re like the rest, unworthy of my best
Hasta la vista, baby
Today we are going to go with some awesome freestyle dance with “Hooked On You” by Sweet Sensation. Sweet Sensation was originally formed in 1985 with sisters Margie and Mari Fernandez along with Betty Lebron. Sweet Sensation was signed to a production deal with Platinum Vibe Productions, and recording started on their first album, with Betty Lebron on lead vocals. Using “Hooked on You” as an introduction, the trio was signed to Next Plateau Records. “Hooked on You” was released on the Next Plateau label, along with their second single, “Victim of Love (Goodbye Baby).” In 1987, they were picked up by Atco, and their debut album, Take It While It’s Hot, was released. “Hooked on You” peaked at #64. In late 1988, Mari left the group and was replaced by Sheila Vega. The original album cover featured Betty, Margie, and Mari, but in the 1989 re-pressing of their album, new member Sheila Vega replaced Mari on the cover. The vocals of “Hooked on You” were not changed.
But, the song was re-released, and had greater success, reaching #23 on the U.S. charts.
Sweet Sensation would go on to record only one more studio album, 1990s Love Child. This album would produce their biggest hit – the chart topper “If Wishes Came True“.
The split up a few years later. But this freestyle gem still has me “hooked”!
“9 to 5” by Dolly Parton Became the #1 Song in America on this day in 1981. Dolly wrote this for the 1980 film of the same name, and the single was released on November 3, 1980. The song earned Parton an Academy Award nomination and four Grammy Award nominations, winning her the awards for Best Country Song and Best Country Vocal Performance, Female. This would be Dolly’s only solo hit to land at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. She also hit #1 with her duet with Kenny Rogers, “Islands In the Stream.”
The film was Dolly’s acting debut, and also starred Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, and Dabney Coleman. The film was a huge success, grossing over $103.9 million. Although Dolly was already a successful singer, musician and songwriter, this movie and song launched her permanently into mainstream popular culture.
In honor of Dennis DeYoung’s 75th birthday, today’s Song of the Day is “Desert Moon.” The song “Dessert Moon” is from the Styx founder’s debut solo album, also named Desert Moon. It had been intended to be a Styx song, but the band took a break after falling apart following the Mr. Roboto tour.
The song was released in 1984, and reached the #10 position in the US Billboard Hot 100. This song may be more relatable now that we are older as it is about nostalgia as Dennis DeYoung sings about reconnecting with an old love and recalling the old days.
The video was directed by Jack Cole, who also directed Steve Perry’s “Oh Sherrie” and “Foolish Heart” videos. This video was filmed partly at the train depot and other historic buildings in and around Santa Paula, California.
Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure opened in theaters on this day in 1989, and “I Can’t Break Away” by Big Pig is one of my favorite songs from the soundtrack. It was featured in the opening credits of the film.
The song itself was originally released on November 2, 1987 in the United Kingdom, and was released on February 15, 1988, as the third single from the Australian band’s debut album Bonk. It was released as “Breakaway”, but is listed as “I Can’t Break Away on the soundtrack album. This was a cover of the 1973 Chuck Jackson song.
Big Pig’s version became the band’s most successful single, reaching number one in New Zealand in May 1988. It also reached number eight in their native Australia and managed to chart in North America, reaching number 60 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and number 10 on Canada’s RPM Top Singles chart.
Big Pig released only one more album, 1990s You Lucky People. They disbanded shortly afterwards, in March 1991.
Lead singer, Sherine Abeyratne along with her twin sister (and also a pop star) Zan, were guests just this week on the podcast, A Journey Through Aussie Pop.
Here is the official music video
Here are the opening credits of Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure