I drove from Columbus to Champaign on Saturday. It’s about a 4.5 hour drive and I had the chance to listen to the entire Top 40 Countdown for this week in 1981 on one of the Sirius 80s Channels on the radio. Check out the list below with thanks to http://weeklytop40.wordpress.com/1981-all-charts/. It is one of the most forgettable lists of music that you can ever think of. There are only a handful of songs that are even regularly played today. This year is such a transitional year in music. I still listened to the entire list though.
BILLBOARD (USA) MAGAZINE’S SINGLES CHART FOR WEEK OF:October 17,1981
TW LW Wks. Song-Artist
1 2 ARTHUR’S THEME (Best That You Can Do) –•– Christopher Cross (Warner Brothers)-10 (1 week at #1) (1)
2 1 ENDLESS LOVE –•– Diana Ross and Lionel Richie (Motown)-15 (1)
3 7 START ME UP –•– The Rolling Stones (Rolling Stones)-9 (3)
4 5 FOR YOUR EYES ONLY –•– Sheena Easton (EMI-America)-13 (4)
5 6 STEP BY STEP –•– Eddie Rabbitt (Elektra)-13 (5)
6 8 PRIVATE EYES –•– Daryl Hall and John Oates (RCA)-8 (6)
7 3 STOP DRAGGIN’ MY HEART AROUND –•– Stevie Nicks (with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers) (Modern)-13 (3)
8 4 WHO’S CRYING NOW –•– Journey (Columbia)-14 (4)
9 13 HARD TO SAY –•– Dan Fogelberg (Full Moon)-8 (9)
10 11 THE NIGHT OWLS –•– The Little River Band (Capitol)-9 (10)
11 9 URGENT –•– Foreigner (Atlantic)-16 (4)
12 17 I’VE DONE EVERYTHING FOR YOU –•– Rick Springfield (RCA)-9 (12)
13 10 HOLD ON TIGHT –•– ELO (Jet)-13 (10)
14 22 TRYIN’ TO LIVE MY LIFE WITHOUT YOU –•– Bob Seger (Capitol)-6 (14)
15 16 SHARE YOUR LOVE WITH ME –•– Kenny Rogers (Liberty)-7 (15)
16 21 WHEN SHE WAS MY GIRL –•– The Four Tops (Casablanca)-10 (16)
17 19 SUPER FREAK (Part 1) –•– Rick James (Gordy)-11 (17)
18 18 I COULD NEVER MISS YOU (More Than I Do) –•– Lulu (Alfa)-12 (18)
19 20 WE’RE IN THIS LOVE TOGETHER –•– Al Jarreau (Warner Brothers)-12 (19)
20 25 SAY GOODBYE TO HOLLYWOOD –•– Billy Joel (Columbia)-6 (20)
21 23 JUST ONCE –•– Quincy Jones Featuring James Ingram (A&M)-10 (21)
22 29 THE THEME FROM “HILL STREET BLUES” –•– Mike Post (Featuring Larry Carlton)-9 (22)
23 27 HERE I AM (Just When I Thought I Was Over You) –•– Air Supply (Arista)-4 (23)
24 26 SHE’S A BAD MAMA JAMA (She’s Built, She’s Stacked) –•– Carl Carlton (20th Century)-9 (24)
25 42 WAITING FOR A GIRL LIKE YOU –•– Foreigner (Atlantic)-2 (25)
26 14 QUEEN OF HEARTS –•– Juice Newton (Capitol)-21 (6)
27 39 OH NO –•– The Commodores (Motown)-4 (27)
28 36 EVERY LITTLE THING SHE DOES IS MAGIC –•– The Police (A&M)-4 (28)
29 34 ATLANTA LADY (Something About Your Love) –•– Marty Balin (EMI-America)-5 (29)
30 15 THE VOICE –•– The Moody Blues (Threshold)-11 (15)
31 47 PHYSICAL –•– Olivia Newton-John (MCA)-3 (31)
32 37 HE’S A LIAR –•– The Bee Gees (RSO)-4 (32)
33 38 ALIEN –•– The Atlanta Rhythm Section (Columbia)-8 (33)
34 12 THE BEACH BOYS MEDLEY –•– The Beach Boys (Capitol)-13 (12)
35 24 (There’s) NO GETTIN’ OVER ME –•– Ronnie Milsap (RCA)-17 (5)
36 28 LADY (You Bring Me Up) –•– The Commodores (Motown)-18 (8)
37 43 SAUSALITO SUMMERNIGHT –•– Diesel (Regency)-6 (37)
38 57 THE OLD SONGS –•– Barry Manilow (Arista)-2 (38)
39 46 IN THE DARK –•– Billy Squier (Capitol)-6 (39)
40 40 BURNIN’ FOR YOU –•– Blue Oyster Cult (Columbia)-10 (40)
As I’m working on my list of my favorite albums from 1983, I wanted to share with you the list from Billboard for 1983. There are several classic albums here, and many very forgettable albums. What are your favorites? Some of my favorites from 1983 aren’t here as they weren’t big sellers, but they were very important albums. REM and Madonna’s first albums came out in 1983. There were great albums from Blue Nile, The The, Replacements, Tears for Fears, Aztec Camera, and New Order. I’ll publish the top 100 singles list shortly for 1983.
Rank Album Artist
1 Thriller Michael Jackson
2 Business As Usual Men At Work
3 Synchronicity The Police
4 H20 Hall & Oates
5 1999 Prince & the Revolution
6 Lionel Richie Lionel Richie
7 Workout Record Jane Fonda
8 Pyromania Def Leppard
9 Kissing To Be Clever Culture Club
10 Greatest Hits, Vol. 2 Olivia Newton-John
11 IV Toto
12 Frontiers Journey
13 Rio Duran Duran
14 Built For Speed The Stray Cats
15 Cuts Like A Knife Bryan Adams
16 Get Nervous Pat Benatar
17 The Distance Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band
18 Get Lucky Loverboy
19 Mountain Music Alabama
20 Flashdance Soundtrack Flashdance
21 Hello, I Must Be Going Phil Collins
22 Night and Day Joe Jackson
23 Spring Session M Missing Persons
24 Kilroy Was Here Styx
25 War U2
26 Duran Duran Duran Duran
27 Always On My Mind Willie Nelson
28 Let’s Dance David Bowie
29 The Closer You Get Alabama
30 Combat Rock The Clash
31 Eliminator ZZ Top
32 American Fool John Cougar
33 The Nylon Curtain Billy Joel
34 Escape Journey
35 High ‘N’ Dry Def Leppard
36 High Adventure Kenny Loggins
37 Long After Dark Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
38 Pancho and Lefty Willie Nelson & Merle Haggard
39 Cargo Men At Work
40 Special Beat Service The English Beat
41 Friend Or Foe Adam Ant
42 The Lexicon Of Love ABC
43 All This Love DeBarge
44 Living In Oz Rick Springfield
45 Midnight Love Marvin Gaye
46 Three Lock Box Sammy Hagar
47 Greatest Hits Dan Fogelberg
48 Jarreau Al Jarreau
49 Emotions In Motion Billy Squier
50 Outside/Inside Tubes
51 Killer On the Rampage Eddy Grant
52 Worlds Apart Saga
53 Forever, For Always, For Love Luther Vandross
54 Famous Last Words Supertramp
55 Blinded By Science Thomas Dolby
56 Reach the Beach Fixx
57 Metal Health Quiet Riot
58 Heartlight Neil Diamond
59 The Golden Age Of Wireless Thomas Dolby
60 Branigan Laura Branigan
61 Bella Donna Stevie Nicks
62 Naked Eyes Naked Eyes
63 Headhunter Krokus
64 Winds Of Change Jefferson Starship
65 Never Surrender Triumph
66 Pleasure Victim Berlin
67 Cut Golden Earring
68 Screaming For Vengeance Judas Priest
69 Too Tough Angela Bofill
70 Records Foreigner
71 Heartbreaker Dionne Warwick
72 Sweet Dreams Eurythmics
73 I Can’t Stand Still Don Henley
74 Greatest Hits The Little River Band
75 Visions Gladys Knight & the Pips
76 Scandal Scandal
77 Too-Rye-Ay Dexys Midnight Runners
78 Piece of Mind Iron Maiden
79 Julio Julio Iglesias
80 The Wild Heart Stevie Nicks
81 Forever Now Psychedelic Furs
82 Speaking In Tongues Talking Heads
83 Dawn Patrol Night Ranger
84 Keep It Up Loverboy
85 State Of Confusion The Kinks
86 Daylight Again Crosby, Stills & Nash
87 Sergio Mendes Sergio Mendes
88 Mirage Fleetwood Mac
89 Love For Love The Whispers
90 Kihnspiracy The Greg Kihn Band
91 Here Comes the Night Barry Manilow
92 In Your Eyes George Benson
93 Madness Madness
94 A Flock of Seagulls A Flock Of Seagulls
95 Dark Side of the Moon Pink Floyd
96 Gap Band IV The Gap Band
97 We’ve Got Tonight Kenny Rogers
98 Every Home Should Have One Patti Austin
99 The Nightfly Donald Fagen
100 Word Of Mouth Toni Basil
Billboard Top 100 for 1983
As I have a lot of new followers of this blog, I wanted to remind everyone why I actually know 80s music. I worked in and around music for all of the 1980s. I started part-time working at Musicland in the Fall of 1982, right around when both Michael Jackson released Thriller, and MTV became really important. I worked part-time at Musicland for a few years, then a local Madison, Wisconsin indie record retailer. After this, I opened a small record store that was really a CD store with a few partners. We built it to five locations. I then sold my share and went back to school. During this time, I also managed a local Chicago band and worked for the Midwest distributor of Profile and Tommy Boy. I’ll try to dig up my picture with Queen Latifah for the release of her first album on Tommy Boy.
Below is my time sheet from Musicland from 1984. It’s actually for Thanksgiving week, you’ll see no hours on Thursday. I found this while I was going through all of my old albums before I recently moved. It is really a relic.
I have started working on my favorite albums from 1983 and will begin posting about these soon. In the meantime, let me know some of your favorites from 1983. 1983 saw the debuts of a lot of artists including Tears for Fears, Eurythmics, Big Country, Waterboys, REM, Madonna and of course Weird Al Yankovic. And also new albums from U2, David Bowie, Billy Joel, Genesis and the Replacements (one of my all-time favorites). Were you into Styx and Kilroy Was Here, maybe not. Or Kiss (without their makeup)? Let me know.
Check out my first podcast I did with my amazing agency partners at OKRP with a special thanks to @trokeefe, Scott and #OnTheRocks. The link is http://okrp.com/2014/07/on-the-rocks-vol-2-an-okrp-guest-dj/ The theme for the podcast was great covers. They’re done by some of my favorite bands like Foo Fighters and Dinosaur Jr. Some are just amazing covers like Johnny Cash’s version of Hurt by Nine Inch Nails and Filter’s version of Happy Together.
Let me know what you think, I think they are all great.
Up next will be the best album’s of 1983, which will be my Summer project.
Sorry, it’s been so long. Finally, here are my top 5 albums from 1982.
|5. Joe Jackson
|Night and Day
Release Date: June 1982
His big hits from this album still hold up today. This is a very under-rated album as is Joe Jackson overall.
Release Date: October 27, 1982
This one is really hard to believe that it was almost 32 years ago.
I can remember working at Musicland in Bayshore Mall for Christmas in 1982 when I was exposed to this album. I built a display for it. This was my first job working in a record store.
|3. The Jam||The Gift
Release Date: March 12, 1982
I can thank my friend Scott for introducing me to The Jam and Paul Weller. When I get to my 1983 list, you will definitely see the Style Council rated high. This is a really fun album.
Link to the Full Album (but not in the right order):
|2. Kate Bush||The Dreaming
Release Date: September 13, 1982
Kate quickly became one of my favorites with her Hounds of Love album. From this, I went backwards to hear her earlier albums. I actually talked to her on the phone in 1989. This list is my favorite albums from 1982, not necessarily, my favorites that I experienced in 1982.
I saw that she was going to do a series of dates in the UK later this year and it sold out in minutes. These are here first concerts in decades. It would have been fun to go to London to see her, hopefully she comes here.
Link to the Full Album:
|1. Violent Femmes||Violent Femmes
Release Date: 1982 (really, this was 1982)
In 1982 I was in High School in Milwaukee. While all of these great bands from the UK were getting a ton of airplay, we had an amazing hometown band. They were playing small clubs across Milwaukee, and very slowly building a following. I remember seeing them headline at Summerfest in Milwaukee in 1983.
This album very slowly built a following over the next two years, and is known as one of the only albums to go platinum without ever hitting the top 100.
Link to the Full Album:
Also, check out the remake from Gnarls Barkley of Gone Daddy Gone:
Sorry, it’s been a few weeks. I didn’t forget, just got very busy. I did really enjoy listening to these albums again. Let me know what you think.
This is close to a greatest hits of MTV from the Fall of 1982 into 1983. While I’m working on this, I’m listening to one of the best albums from 1983, check out Aztec Camera’s High Land Hard Rain. There is a 30th Anniversary special double disc out.
Here are the first four of my favorites from 1982. This is a very eclectic group, as I think you’ll see from my entire list. What do you think?
|Artist||Album and Release Date|
|20. The Who||It’s Hard
Release date: September 4, 1982
|Link to the Video for Eminence Front: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GnHLgxKUsEA||In 1982, It’s Hard was billed as the Who’s farewell album and tour. I can remember that Milwaukee wasn’t on the tour schedule, and well, we were Milwaukee, how could we not be on the schedule. A DJ at the local rock station decided to sit on a ledge at his studio until the Who added Milwaukee to the schedule. They did add Milwaukee towards the end of the schedule. Little did we know then, that the Who would have several farewell tours over the next 30 years. Through High School, the Who was one of my favorite bands. I saw midnight showings of both Tommy and Quadrophenia several times.From this album, I still love the long intro to Eminence Front.|
|19. Stray Cats||Built for Speed
Release date: June 7, 1982
|Link to the video for Rock This Town: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RxBHRZpIdg
Link to the video for Stray Cat Strut: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vEtbfzMLVWU
|Rock This Town introduced me and the country to Rockabilly. The entire album really holds up and is fun to listen to. It’s not a surprise that they didn’t have anything else very successful after this. One album is still enough. I do particularly like the chord progression in Stray Cat Strut as it’s a traditional blues progression that you can find in other songs.|
|18. The Cure||Pornography
Release date: May 3, 1982
|Here’s a link to the full album: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCURzwGIgF4||My first introduction to the Cure was from the Album “the Head on the Door.” From this I went backwards to hear their other albums. This is a great album.|
|17. Simon and Garfunkel||Concert in Central Park
Release date: February 16, 1982
|Sounds of Silence from Central Park: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z-8ClnMMSZw||In the summer of 1983, Simon and Garfunkel played at Milwaukee County Stadium. I can remember, getting to the stadium early with a group of friends, and waited for the gates to open to the outfield grass. When the gates opened, we ran and ended up near the front of the stage. The field was all General Admission seating. I can’t imagine anything like this today. It was a great concert and one I still remember.|
This has taken a while to put together as 1982 was a very prolific and fun year for music. I have updated the playlist below to include everything within my Honorable Mention. It is now 41 songs and over 2.5 hours long.
I will start publishing my top 20 albums for 1982 this week. They’ll be in order from 20 to 1. I hope you enjoy. Please let me know what you think. This is becoming a labor of love, and quite enjoyable to create. I’m re-listening to all of the albums.
This is the entire list of my honorable mention.
Honorable Mention: Good Music, Memorable, but Not Great Albums, some awesome singles on this list.
|Artist and Links||Album Title and Songs|
|A Flock of Seagulls
|A Flock of Seagulls
|Friend or Foe
|Bow Wow Wow
|Last of the Mohicans (EP)
|The Clash||Combat Rock
|Golden Age of Wireless
|Killer on the Rampage
|Peter Gabriel (Security)
|Huey Lewis and the News
|Spring Session M
|After the Snow
|Days of Innocence
|Alan Parsons Project
|Eye in the Sky
|Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
|Long After Dark
|New Gold Dream (81, 82, 83, 84)
|Sweets from a Stranger
|Emotions in Motion
|Famous Last Words
|Eye of the Tiger|
|The Party’s Over
|In the Name of Love|
|Wall of Voodoo
|Call of the West
|Under the Big Black Sun
|Yaz or Yazoo
|Upstairs at Eric’s
Here is a playlist from the first ten artists for Honorable Mention. Over the next several days and this coming week, I will complete the Honorable Mention list and then start releasing my top 20 for 1982. I hope you enjoy.
And by the way, I apologize in advance for some of the video clips from YouTube. I did my best to get the actual videos, but in some cases they were copyright protected and not posted on YouTube.
Let me know what you think, but I do realize it’s hard to give feedback without seeing the entire list. I’m working on it. I felt it was very important to have an Honorable Mention. I’m defining Honorable mention as 1) Good Music, 2) Memorable, 3) but Not Great Albums. And there are some awesome singles on this list.
I updated the list in my posting from 4/14 so I removed it here.