One January Evening....every #1 from EG's personal Top 40 (1984-2010) | Page 12 | The Popjustice Forum

One January Evening....every #1 from EG's personal Top 40 (1984-2010)

Discussion in 'Charts, rates etc' started by Eric Generic, Dec 8, 2018.

  1. The missing link between The Thompson Twins and Elvis Costello: they both played Beatles songs at Live Aid. Elvis did "All you need is love"
     
    Eric Generic likes this.
  2. I did feel Doctor Dream was a shocking mis step (and side kick) on a par with the likes of War Song. A group who failed to move on with the changes in music. And the 'say no kids, drugz r bad' was a bit lumpen.
     
  3. Yeah, there were a few dreadful creative moves by the big guns of the mid-80s....Culture Club, Human League, T Twins...I'd blame it on Live Aid, but Waking Up With The House On Fire was 1984!
     
  4. Plus, Costello's song inspired by the length of my Thompson Twins blog posts... Every Day I Write The Book.
     
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  5. Also: Into the groove >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Doctor Dream.
     
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  6. Anti war songs were all the rage in 1984 culture club were just following the trend.
     
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  7. Obviously, yes...but the 14-year old me saw it differently!
     
  8. I did like King for a day though. It had a melancholy charm about it. That was a more deserving number one than Doctor.
     
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  9. If it had been the lead single, it almost surely would have entered at #1 as well...that's how much of a fan I was. And I wouldn't have been jaded by how lacklustre the album actually was...by the time King was a single in October, I'd rather fallen out of love with the band a bit, and was moving on to rather unexpected new faves.
     
  10. 1985 is probably the one year that my charts (and tastes) were all over the place. I expect it was partly due to some disappointing albums by my 1984 faves (Prince, TTwins, HoJo etc), just being exposed to - and discovering - more types of music, and then the big changes in myself and my life through the year. It always was the one era of my charts where I look back and question some of my music decisions!
     
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  11. Time to go back from the future....

    Number ones: #53
    [​IMG]
    • HUEY LEWIS & THE NEWS The Power Of Love (Chrysalis)
    • Week Ending 14th September 1985
    • 1 Week At #1

    Looking back, it’s surprising how quickly I went from discovering the UK Top 40 Chart was the most important thing in my life, and wanting to imitate it by creating my own, to discovering that the UK Top 40 wasn’t really reflecting my own developing tastes, and looking beyond weekday Radio 1 and Top Of The Pops for my inspiration.

    The start of 1985 saw my first #1 that didn’t make the UK Top 40 at all, and by the summer of 1985 it wasn’t unusual for a new release from a favourite band to go straight in at the top. Next, there would be a #1 which for a while wasn’t even available in British record stores but had been conquering the Billboard Hot 100.

    Step forward, Huey Lewis & The News.

    Paul Gambaccini’s Saturday radio slot, focused around all things American, was shaping a lot of my listening habits. There was something about the US charts, perhaps because of the sheer size of the country, which fascinated me; the fact their main chart was a Top 100 alone was extraordinary, with its low debut positions and slow climbs. Record Mirror would also feature extensive US singles and album charts, and I did in fact begin putting together a personal weekly US Top 40 of sorts, but never stuck at it beyond a few months.

    The Power Of Love arrived at the height of this American fixation, the “theme” song from a new film called Back To The Future which wouldn’t even reach UK cinemas until several months down the line. Such was my eagerness to own this slice of synth-driven AOR, repeated visits to Our Price resulted in either blank looks from staff or polite suggestions to “maybe wait until it’s released over here, yeah?”.

    I was determined to get a copy, but the taped version off MW Radio with Gambo’s dulcet tones over the intro would have to suffice until then, a situation that only perhaps music obsessives of a certain age will identify with (kids today don’t know how lucky they are, etc).

    Huey Lewis & The News were having a bit of an imperial phase in the US, starting with the hits from 1983’s Sports such as I Want A New Drug, The Heart Of Rock N Roll, Heart and Soul and If This Is It. Their run would continue unabated with The Power Of Love and then all of the other singles lifted from the follow-up to Sports, September 1986’s Fore!.

    Some of the Sports singles flirted with the lower half of the UK Top 75, but The Power Of Love would prove the big breakthrough (and received a second chart wind once the film opened in cinemas). They may have not been revolutionary, but they knew how to pen a good tune.

    Aided by Huey’s amiable personality and appealing vocals, the band were possibly the most unlikely megastars of the ’80s until the hits suddenly dried up in 1988 with the well-below-par Small World album.
     
  12. Ahhh the ‘recorded from radio’ compilations... so quaint when you think how simple Youtube rips are these days.

    I’d usually go one further and sacrifice the quality by re-recording the radio rip with some deft pause button action to trim any DJ inanities
     
  13. Someone mention a pause button? The days of trying to cut out Tony Blackburn and Tommy Vance' s voice at the end of a song...."sigh" happy Sundays!
     
  14. The thing with Gambo, if the US single was at #1 he'd spend ages talking over the intro. All the guff about tuning in next week to hear America's top hits or whatever it was. I know that was their job, and Gambo was probably better at it than most, but it could be a nuisance!

    Soon as the Power Of Love was released here, I was onto it. £1.35 I think!
     
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  15. But now...I really enjoy Gambo doing Pick of the Pops - I love his links between the songs - and he hardly ever talks over an intro now....1963 and 1981 this coming Saturday...Stand and Deliver...for Pick of the Pops!
     
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  16. There's just enough room to fit this next one in....

    Number ones: #54
    [​IMG]
    • SQUEEZE No Place Like Home (A&M)
    • Week Ending 21st September 1985
    • 2 Weeks At #1

    Success on the Official UK Top 40 had ceased to be an issue for me by this point, and the #1 entry on my chart for Squeeze’s second single from Cosi Fan Tutti Fruttidemonstrated just how far I had veered off into my own little world.

    Like most people, I knew the Squeeze of Cool For Cats and Up The Junction, their back-to-back #2 classics from 1979. Not even an 8-year old with only a passing interest in the pop charts could avoid those. I had been less aware of their subsequent releases, minor hits like Another Nail In My Heart, Tempted, Pulling Mussels From A Shell and Is That Love. As for Labelled With Love (their only other foray into the UK Top 5), it was so unlike typical Squeeze that until I belatedly sought out their Singles 45s & Under compilation in 1986, I didn’t realise it was actually by them and not some random Country & Western act.

    So, to the summer of 1985. Following a three-year hiatus – which included the main songwriters in the band, Difford & Tilbrook, branching out with a self-titled effort in June 1984 – Squeeze were back with the marvellously-titled Cosi Fan Tutti Frutti. In another example of how my listening habits and musical discoveries were being influenced in new and different ways, the marathon Saturday afternoon slot on Radio 1 (which took in the US Charts) would feature host Richard Skinner (and later Johnnie Walker) featuring a new album at some length, interviewing the artists and playing several songs from said record.

    Cosi Fan Tutti Frutti was probably my first purchase to be inspired directly by the programme, and marked the point at which albums really began to be more important to me than singles. The LP’s lead 45, Last Time Forever, had been and gone a couple of months earlier; I must have heard it perhaps once on Radio 1’s Round Table show and not really taken much notice. There had been some excitement in Record Mirror magazine about the band’s return, but again it hadn’t registered with me.

    The album’s artwork had piqued my interest, though. I’ve always been very visually-oriented, be it paintings, buildings, traffic signs or record sleeves. I had seen the Cosi Fan Tutti Frutti cover in Our Price and wondered what sort of music must be inside. Thanks to Richard Skinner and co., I would soon find out.

    Produced by Laurie Latham, fresh from helming the first two Paul Young albums, his signature sound was all over the album (rather too much so for messrs Difford & Tilbrook’s liking, in retrospect). The upshot of this for me was a familiarity with the fussy, bass-heavy production recognisable from his work with Young, which I happened to find very appealing.

    There wasn’t much to differentiate Cosi… tracks such as Big Beng or I Learned How To Pray to Tomb Of Memories or Bite The Hand That Feeds from the latter’s Secret Of Association album. Last Time Forever, heard in the context of the album, was clearly a highlight and I would belatedly enter it on my own chart, whereupon it reached #10. Yet it was No Place Like Home, with its rolling rhythm and chiming synths, which grabbed me the most.

    It boasted the most kitchen-sink production on the whole LP, replete with stuttering vocal samples on the final “L-l-l-l-like home” and the sound of household objects being destroyed in the background as the track fades out (as per the song’s theme of a domestic barney). Difford & Tilbrook may not be entirely happy with the Latham imprint on Cosi Fan Tutti Frutti, and they would make a conscious move away from such lush, stylised music from then on, but the material was usually strong enough to withstand the production techniques, and Tilbrook especially was frequently at his best on the album.

    I was now a fully signed-up Squeeze fan, and although the next two singles Heartbreaking World and King George Street only peaked at #12 and #13 respectively on my chart, the reality was I’d become infatuated with their earlier work via that Singles 45s & Under retrospective originally released in 1982.
     
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  17. A big surprise there...I loved "Love's crashing waves" at the time - it's got Summer 1984 all over it!
     
    Eric Generic likes this.
  18. Yeah I sort of noted it at the time, without really hearing it much or making the connection to Squeeze and those hits from when I was 8 years old. I think it got quite a bit of TV promo, I do recall an ad that used to get shown, with clips from the Crashing Waves video.

    No Place Like Home really was my most surprising chart topper to that point, especially entering straight in at #1. It made something like #88 on the UK charts.
     
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  19. Time for a brief Cameo appearance...

    Number ones: #55
    [​IMG]
    • CAMEO Single Life (Club/Phonogram)
    • Week Ending 5th October 1985
    • 1 Week At #1

    A year before Larry Blackmon donned his infamous red codpiece and addressed all the pretty ladies around the world, he and his Cameo chums were in the process of creating the sound that wound up as Word Up; a kind of “herky jerky” electronic funk, high on angular beats and robotic vocals, laced with sly humour and – in the case of Single Life and 1984’s sleeper club hit She’s Strange – great choruses.

    For a time, this hybrid of funk, soul and electro was the coolest groove in town; Single Life dominated the Record Mirror Club charts during the late summer of 1985, and the consensus was that Blackmon, more than any of his peers at the time, had the nous and personality to go places.

    The promise appeared to be delivered upon with the massive impact of Word Up some 12 months later; feted in Q magazine, Smash Hits and Record Mirror alike, regulars on Top Of The Pops during late 1986 and early 1987. Cameo had the market sewn up, surely?

    What nobody had quite anticipated was the speed at which the previously underground House music scene would cross over and turn mainstream dance music on its head, rendering an entire genre of robotic, vocodered, jittery synth funk all but extinct before the 80s were out. Some, such as Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis’ Flyte Tyme productions, or the emerging New Jack Swing movement led by Teddy Riley and LA Reid, prospered in the new musical and cultural landscape vacated by all the old funk stalwarts, but the music was influenced by, and indebted to, the sounds of House and Techno.

    As for Cameo, their fall was alarmingly swift, not helped by a frankly dreadful and ill-conceived album – Machismo – in late 1988 that killed their commercial status overnight.
     
  20. There's something charting here on my Top 40 and it's called.....

    Number ones: #56
    [​IMG]
    • DEPECHE MODE It’s Called A Heart (Mute)
    • Week Ending 12th October 1985
    • 2 Weeks At #1

    After some unexpected chart-toppers, we are back on more familiar territory with Depeche Mode’s third #1.

    It had been just over a year since their last, Master & Servant, and followed a pair of singles that reached #2; the AA-side Blasphemous Rumours/Somebody, and a non-album track Shake The Disease. Having released a studio album in every year since 1981, the band (or more likely the record label) chose to take stock at the end of 1985 with a Greatest Hits set, The Singles 81>85.

    The obligatory new song to promote its release, It’s Called A Heart was poppier than anything Depeche Mode had done since 1983, and seemed to represent an artistic backwards step in its attempt to serve as a commercial appetiser for the compilation. A necessary evil, in some ways. Enough songs about blasphemy and disease, chaps, thanksverymuch, you could almost hear the A&R department saying….we need airplay! And pre-Christmas sales!

    Certainly, the band themselves were unhappy bunnies, feeling that Fly On The Windscreen – a brilliant, doom-laden slab of monolithic industrial pop – should have been the A-side rather than the B-side. “Death is everywhere…..there are flies on the windscreen for a start, reminding us we could be torn apart tonight”.

    Mute Records won the battle, they got the pop song they wanted to flog Singles 81>85 (and it was by no means a dud), but Depeche Mode went on to win the war with their most remarkable and defiantly uncompromising album a few months later.
     
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