CHART ATTACK! #28: 4/18/81


Welcome back, everybody, to another edition of CHART ATTACK!  I know that you’ve been dying all week to know what was rocking the charts during the week of April 18, 1981.  Or not.  Well, either way, that’s the week we’re attackin’, so let’s get started!

10.  Don’t Stand So Close To Me – The Police
  Amazon iTunes
9.  The Best Of Times – Styx
  Amazon iTunes
8.  Being With You – Smokey Robinson  Amazon iTunes
7.  While You See A Chance – Steve Winwood  Amazon iTunes
6.  Angel Of The Morning – Juice Newton  Amazon iTunes
5.  Woman – John Lennon  Amazon
4.  Just The Two Of Us – Grover Washington, Jr. (with Bill Withers)  Amazon iTunes
3.  Morning Train (Nine To Five) – Sheena Easton  Amazon
2.  Rapture – Blondie  Amazon iTunes
1.  Kiss On My List – Daryl Hall & John Oates  Amazon iTunes

10.  Don’t Stand So Close To Me – The Police

So the question, of course, needs to be asked:  which version do you prefer, 1980 or 1986?  My first Police album was their compilation Every Breath You Take – The Singles, which only included the ’86 version, so that was my initial exposure to the song.  I suppose I preferred that version for a while (I love the backing vocals), until I finally heard the full original version.  Now, I’m not quite sure.  I think the ’86 version is much more consistent in its dark tone that matches the lyrical content, but then again, the ’80 opening – plus the dichotomy between the verses and choruses – sound pretty chilling as well.  Being that both are so different (and I love that they are), perhaps it’s not even worth comparing.  I can’t imagine anybody saying they prefer ’86, anyway; even if it’s true, it just sounds uncool.

Where was I?  Oh yes, "Don’t Stand So Close To Me."  Sting insists that the story of this song – a teacher falling for a student – was not based on his own pre-Police experiences as an English teacher.  Although the group had plenty of recognizable songs before this one – "Roxanne," "Message In A Bottle," "Can’t Stand Losing You" – none of these were big hits in the U.S.  "Don’t Stand" reached #10 and became their first stand-out single in the country.

Numerous sources point out – and I’m stupid for not realizing this before – that "don’t stand so close to me" is melodically quite similar to Sting’s "I want my MTV" cameo in Dire Straits’ "Money For Nothing" – so much so that when it was realized, Sting’s lawyers got involved and insisted Sting be granted a co-writing credit.  I’m not saying that they were wrong, but damn, Knopfler really felt that sting.  Huh?  Huh??!?  I just wrote that one!

In other news, did you guys hear that The Police are reforming?  True story.

9.  The Best Of Times – Styx

Suck it, Tommy Shaw!

I don’t know why I’m so down on Tommy Shaw.  I guess I just find it so funny that this man – one who really wants to rock but has the babyface of a bubblegum pop star – was stuck backing Dennis DeYoung, probably mumbling "this is fucking stupid" the whole time, and then had to sit back and watch DeYoung’s songs reach the top of the charts.  (Yes, Shaw had hits in Styx as well, but they never surpassed DeYoung’s.)  And "The Best Of Times" isn’t even that great a track.  I’ll give it credit for a strong, catchy opening (even if we’re subjected to DeYoung’s "hey look, I could be on Broadway!" vibrato), but not much else.  The keyboard/vocal "with you tonight" effect is creepy, and could they have possibly chosen worse dynamics later in the song, where they go:

these are the best OF TIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIMES!

It makes me wince every time I hear it.  Incidentally, this song debuted at #31, which was the highest debut for any song on the charts in 1981.

8.  Being With You – Smokey Robinson

You gotta love the opening of "Being With You" – it seems separate from the rest of the track, and sounds like it belongs as the soundtrack to a Cinemax softcore porn flick.  The keyboards that accompany the rest of the song may give away the fact that it’s an early ’80s tune, but in my mind, Smokey Robinson’s sweet voice is timeless, so when I think of this one, I definitely don’t associate it with 1981.

Robinson had left his legendary band The Miracles back in 1972, and had only experienced minor success as a solo act until 1980, when he reached #4 with "Cruisin’."  That same year, Kim Carnes released "More Love," a cover of the Smokey Robinson & The Miracles #23 hit from 1967.  It was Carnes’ first solo success (a year before "Bette Davis Eyes"), and a grateful Robinson decided to give her a song he had been working on, entitled "Being With You."  He handed it off to George Tobin, who had produced Carnes’ "More Love" (and would go on to record ’80s sensation Tiffany, but that’s another story).  However, Tobin was no longer collaborating with Carnes, and suggested that Robinson record it himself.

Tobin produced the track for Robinson, which wound up becoming his biggest solo hit.  It topped the UK charts, but couldn’t get past #2 in the US.  Keeping it from the top spot?  "Bette Davis Eyes."

7.  While You See A Chance – Steve Winwood (download)

"While You See A Chance" was a collaboration between Winwood and award-winning composer Will Jennings.  You know Jennings:  he either wrote or co-wrote hits like "I’ll Never Love This Way Again," "Up Where We Belong," "Didn’t We Almost Have It All," "Tears In Heaven," and (shudder) "My Heart Will Go On."  The collaboration between the two proved to be a good idea: "While You See A Chance" was Winwood’s highest charting single since "Gimme Some Lovin’" in 1966.  Jennings and Winwood went on to become frequent collaborators, and nearly all of Winwood’s hits in the late ’80s can be attributed to this partnership.

I’ve always liked "While You See A Chance."  It’s synthesizer central – good luck finding a guitar anywhere – and I especially love Winwood’s preference for the unmistakeable synthesizer sound that lies somewhere between a trumpet and a fart.  The synth opening is also memorable, and was actually a mistake on Winwood’s part: originally, he had written a drum track introduction (Winwood plays all instruments on this song and the accompanying album, Arc Of A Diver), but accidentally deleted it while getting ready to record his vocals.  Unable to recreate it, he quickly pieced together the synth intro.  Funny, though – I don’t think he had the same accident during the recording of "The Finer Things," which has an eerily similar intro – and, wouldn’t you know it, that track was also co-written by Jennings!

"While you see a chance, take it/find romance, fake it/because it’s all on you."  I love that line.  I shall put that next to Kenny Loggins’ "This Is It" on my list of Cheesy Songs That Inspire Me.

6.  Angel Of The Morning – Juice Newton

Ugh.  Ugh, ugh, ugh.  And I said this about the song back when all I knew was the chorus.  I hate this song.  Why have so many people recorded this song?  Olivia Newton-John, The Pretenders (Chrissie, how could you?), Ray Conniff, Percy Faith, and of course, Bonnie Tyler, because why should Bonnie Tyler leave anything well enough alone.  Anyway, I’ll try to get over my extreme prejudice of this song (what’s with the military drums and the tolling bells?  It’s about a one-night stand, not about someone going to war!) and give you a little bit of trivia about "Angel Of The Morning."  It was written by Chip Taylor (a stage name – his real name is James Voight, and yes, he’s Jon’s brother).  Taylor had a knack for writing songs that were moderate hits on first release, but were really destined to find true success later.  He wrote "Wild Thing," which was originally recorded by The Wild Ones, but wasn’t a hit until The Troggs covered it.  Similarly, he wrote "Angel Of The Morning," originally recorded by Evie Sands in 1967.  Sands’ version wasn’t bad, but stopped dead in its tracks once her record company went bankrupt.  The next year, Merilee Rush had a #7 hit with the same song.  Of course, it’s Newton’s version that most people remember best, which peaked at #4.  And, of course, who can forget Shaggy’s 2001 re-working of the song, entitled "Angel," which hit #1 and will now be in your head the rest of the day.

5.  Woman – John Lennon

[audio:http://www.wwmmd.net/tunes/inline/ramen.mp3]

(If you’re new to the site and don’t understand what the hell that clip is all about, check out Mellow Gold #19, where we get into deep discussion about "Woman."  The rest of you – you know you were begging for me to post that clip.  Incidentally, I’m hoping that my "ramen" makes it into someone’s mash-up one day.)

4.  Just The Two Of Us – Grover Washington, Jr. (with Bill Withers)

Ahhh, Bill Withers.  I love Bill Withers.  Who doesn’t love Bill Withers?  (He’s like parfait.)  I was surprised to find out that this song isn’t primarily credited to Withers, but to Washington, a master of the saxophone who unfortunately got sucked into smooth jazz later in life (and supposedly was at least somewhat responsible for the rise of Kenny G).  I love the saxophone on this song, but it’s the piece as a whole – and notice, again, that there are no guitars to be found on this song – that is just a beaut.  Withers was a fan of Washington’s, as the saxophonist had covered Withers’ "Ain’t No Sunshine" on his debut record, Inner City Blues, but the two hadn’t met until Washington called him in for this recording.  Despite the enduring popularity of this song, Washington and Withers didn’t have any more of a relationship after recording than they had previously.  "Just The Two Of Us" remained in the Top 10 for a respectable eleven weeks.

Washington died in 1999 of a heart attack after an appearance on CBS’ The Early Show; Withers is still alive, and his music still permeates pop culture (I can’t help but think about Austin Powers when I hear this song, even though I don’t want to).  However, he barely records or performs anymore.  (Oddly enough, he can be found performing recently with Jimmy Buffett.)  As he says, "I didn’t quit the record business; the record business quit me."

3.  Morning Train (Nine To Five) – Sheena Easton

I mentioned this in a previous Chart Attack, but isn’t it hard to believe that this is the same Sheena Easton who later released the smokin’ hot "The Lover In Me" and became a Prince concubine?  How did that come about?  And did he offer her "Manic Monday" as well?  The world may never know.  (By the way, last week’s Chart Attack! was more popular than most, thanks to the Prince/Apollonia "Manic Monday" bootleg reaching the "Most Popular" list on Hype Machine over the weekend.  I can’t tell you how tempted I am to invent a Prince/Sheena Easton "Manic Monday" mp3 right now.)

"Morning Train (Nine To Five)," so re-named in America as to not cause confusion with Dolly Parton’s "9 To 5" (also a hit in ’81) was Easton’s first U.S. single, and what a great introduction:  it hit #1 in May, and remains her only chart-topper in America.  Overall, this song isn’t bad.  I mean, it’s really all about the chorus.  Clearly, they were going for some serious Manhattan Transfer-esque backing vocals, and when you put it all together with Sheena’s voice, you have a pretty catchy hook.   There are even two truck driver’s gear changes in this song, but you’ll notice that the very last one is tackled only by the backing vocalists.  No way was Easton going to sing the chorus in that key.

In fact, the real shame of the song is that the lyrics are completely idiotic and set feminism back about 80 years.  "My baby takes the morning train/he works from nine to five and then/he takes another home again/to find me waiting for him."  Somewhere in the world, Gloria Steinem had to be convinced not to take her own life.

Here’s the video.  I don’t care that it was 1981 – there’s no excuse for any of this.  The bike-riding, the hairdo, the makeup, the ugly aqua-blue pantsuit.  The belt.  THE BELT!!!  Somewhere in the world, Liberace had to be convinced not to take his own life.

[youtube]Cg2IA2UYQCA[/youtube]

2.  Rapture – Blondie

Why are we still proudly giving Blondie credit for introducing rap to the white people and the radio?  I don’t care if it’s true (and it’s probably not true).  My point is this:  has anybody listened to the rap?  It starts off promisingly, name-checking Fab Five Freddy and Grandmaster Flash, and just goes downhill from there.  I can take it up until right after she mentions a Subaru.  Then she starts in with this tale of The Man From Mars eating cars and bars and, uh…guitars.  Who didn’t see that coming?  You know, I wrote a rap like this, once.  Only problem is that it was also 1981, and I was four.

Remember the video?  If you thought it was bad enough that white people were rapping, you should see them dance, DJ, and spray graffiti!

[youtube]xHPikUPlRD8[/youtube]

"Rapture" hit #1 earlier in the month, and was the first hip-hop song to reach the top.  That much is true.  Additionally, Debbie Harry was incredibly hot at the time.  This is also irrefutable fact.

1.  Kiss On My List – Daryl Hall & John Oates (remix download!)

I have very little to say about "Kiss On My List."  I love this song.  Love the piano part, especially, followed by those perfect H&O backing vocals.  It’s catchy, it’s light, it’s wonderful.  Apparently Daryl Hall believed (believes?) that Eddie Van Halen stole the piano part for the "Jump" synth part.  Anybody else think that’s complete bullshit?

While Hall wrote a number of songs with Sara Allen, this song was co-written by Sara’s younger sister, Janna.  Supposedly, this is the first song Janna ever wrote.  I don’t care if it’s true or not; I love "Kiss On My List."  I figure everybody has the original, so the version up for download is from a compilation of H&O remixes.  I decided to include it because last week, JB from the awesome The Hits Just Keep On Comin’ pointed me in the direction of Born Again ’80s, a fantastic site with tons of remixes of our favorite ’80s tunes.  Be sure to check it out!

And that’s it for another Billboard week!  Have a great weekend, and see you same time, same place next week for another CHART ATTACK!

  • Basquiat is one of the grafitti artists in the rapture video (thank you Pop Up Video)
     
    I especially love Winwood’s preference for the unmistakeable synthesizer sound that lies somewhere between a trumpet and a fart.

    Hahahahahahahahaha!
     
    Just the Two of Us is one of my favorite songs to play, the chords are beautiful. No guitars in the original, but I’m pretty sure Marcus Miller played bass on it. 
     
    While Grover did get a little smooth towards the end, you should check out Mr. Magic before you compare him to Kenny G.

  • JT

    J, I haven’t even read your Chart Attack! yet – I just read through the list of songs on the top 10, and got actual chills – goosebumps (pardon the term, I don’t mean to offend any geese) – more than once.
    Best of Times caused it first. Angel of the morning caused it next.  Those songs bring back a flood of memories of a time when life was simple, and mom and dad were the world, and all was safe. I was 25 then……(just kidding folks, I was 3) and YES I remember being 3.  Songs trigger some nice memories of being so small.
     

  • David

    Hands down, the best week in Top 40 EVER.

    You hear that, you Jefferson Airplane hippies? You Death Cab for Bright Eyes indie kids? I’m talking to YOU, messrs. “Nobody rocks like Rob Thomas.”

    1981 had a sound the likes of which we’ve not since seen. (Can you see sound?) Every last one of these songs is the best song ever recorded. “Just The Two Of Us” and “Kiss On My List” are both on my desert island top ten list. Styx was the perfect cheesy blend of rock and mellow, and be careful insulting Tommy Shaw –- his soft, baby-faced fists could still kick your ass. (Can fists kick?)

    Who the hell thought Smokey would have a hit in this decade? And you know what? “Angel Of The Morning” was so bad/good that Nina Simone covered it. NINA SIMONE, buddy.

    1981. The best year in music? Probably. Wait – yes.

  • BD

    For me, the ickiest thing about "Rapture" is seeing Debbie Harry cavorting with Nigel Harrison and Frank Infante, the duo infamously shunned at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction. (I believe Gary Valentine got similar treatment, but I can’t recall the specifics.) The funny thing is that this video is based on the best — and most infrequently played, as far as I can tell — mix of the song, completely with a guitar break ending with a crazy bend that keeps going into the fade."Basquiat" is an intriguing film, by the way. David Bowie as Andy Warhol and Courtney Love as … well, I don’t remember, but she was good. Classic misheard lyric in "Angel of the Morning" — "just brush my teeth before you leave me." "Just The Two of Us" was put to good use in a family-oriented Will Smith rap well before "The Pursuit of Happyness."

  • Wow, I totally don’t remember Courtney Love in Basquiat, but there she was.  Huh.

  • Actually, I read an interview in which Sting implied that it was Knopfler who insisted that Sting get a writing credit for “Money For Nothing”.

  • I think Blondie deserves credit for introducing rap to most white audiences, much in the same way Elvis deserves credit for introducing rock and roll to white audiences. That is not to say that Blondie are in the same league as the great rappers from the late 70’s and early 80’s (puh-lease) and I’m definitely not saying that Blondie are as important as Elvis, but like Madonna after them, Blondie played an important role in embracing the vital New York dance scene and making it popular.

  • dan s.

    Rapture… the non rap bits are really good. Also it always reminds me of Grandmaster Flash’s Adventure on the Wheels of Steel. Which of course in itself is a reminder of the times when scratching was about having fun instead of becoming the yngwie malmsteen of turntables.

  • JT

    Maybe that’s why I liked "Angel of the Morning" – I thought it mentioned teeth. (It doesn’t mention teeth?)  Teeth…a word I could recognize at 3.

  • Considering how Jeffito just got clamped for getting major hits on his blog, I worry when I see messages like, "My hits are exploding!" I hope he can get back in somehow. As for this week’s chart, is there a guiltier pleasure than Hall and Oates? I mean, you cannot roll with the homies and admit you also have a Rock And Soul Part One CD (I do). But dang it, they had a long line of simply amazing hits, dopey as some may be ("Private Eyes"?) More embarrassing insight to the magic of me: I first saw Close Encounters Of The Third Kind (on TV) during this particular year and, consequently, CE3K always reminds me of "Kiss On My List". I am, as always, retarded.  -DwD-

  • That’s okay.  Cyndi Lauper’s She’s So Unusual album makes me think of He-Man figures.

  • Since no one’s admitting to it, *I* was excited you brought your "ramen" back. I’m giggling verily.

  • Emily

    Yeah, your "ramen" still freaks out my dog massively.  It’s like a bizarre torture, I can’t help but play it and watch the hair between her shoulderblades start to stand on end.  Then she just barks at the computer for eternity….
    Good times.
    PS. I recently received an email from ticketmaster titled, "Don’t miss Hall & Oates".  Are you and Mike gonna go?

  • Hall & Oates ain’t no guilty pleasure! Okay, maybe “All American Girl” from “Big Bam Boom” is a guilty pleasure thanks to the questionable rap in the middle of it, but their hits stand the test of time if you ask me. I hadn’t heard “Portable Radio” until “Yacht Rock” used it, but I’ll be damned if that attempt at a disco hit doesn’t bring joy to my ears as well. I heart Hall & Oates.

    4/18/81 was as good a week for music as 4/12/86. There are so many wonderful preschool classics on this Top 10. And yet 4/20/07 is a sad day in music history since Jefitoblog is calling it quits. Or is he? Keep your fingers crossed. It was Jefitoblog’s Complete Idiot’s Guide to Hall & Oates, as a matter of fact, that got me hooked on his site, and I wasn’t even able to download any of the songs he offered. It was his writing that got me excited (and I just couldn’t hide it), not the MP3 freebies (which had already expired at that point, but I didn’t really care — I was just glad to find a Web site full of great writing about pop music that’s often overlooked in this day and age).

    Okay, back to Chart Attack! Of these ten songs, “Angel of the Morning,” “Rapture,” and “The Best of Times” are the only ones I don’t like, but I’ll take “The Best of Times” over any other Styx song, and “Rapture” is more pleasing to my ears than “One Way or Another,” a song I’ve grown to hate due to its incessant use in commercials and on movie soundtracks. (I thought it was a Pretenders song for the longest time.)

    I remember people being very upset by “Don’t Stand So Close to Me ’86” when it came out. No, it’s not as good as the original, but it’s still pretty good, and I feel like its reputation has improved in the past two decades, although I could be wrong. Maybe some people hated it because of what it represented: a last-ditch effort to get the Police back together in the studio to hopefully record a few new songs, a dream that ended when Stewart Copeland broke his collarbone during a horse-riding accident a few days before recording was set to begin, forcing him to record all of his parts on drum machines. Last year I found an article about that recording session, and although I think the writing style is a bit too over-the-top, it’s still an interesting read: http://www.tookooltokalypso.org/dssctm.html. There’s also this interview with the Police from 1999 — http://www.scarlet.nl/~gugten/article11.html — which makes me wonder if the 2007 tour will be cut short due to Sting and Stewart suddenly remembering they can’t stand each other. After reading this interview, I was on Sting’s side. You can call him pretentious all you want, but his appearances on “SNL” and “The Simpsons” in the ’80s and ’90s confirmed for me that he’s a funny guy who doesn’t take himself all that seriously.

    Great story about “Being With You,” Jason. I had no idea, but I did just hear Kim Carnes’s version of “More Love” for the first time a few months ago thanks to that Time-Life “Classic Soft Rock” infomercial featuring Air Supply that’s re-run on Ion/PAX over and over again. “Being With You” is Mellow R&B Gold, wouldn’t you agree?

    Thank you very much for that link to the Bill Withers interview. His anecdote about a naked four-year-old white girl running around the studio in ’85 and asking him to tickle her is very strange. (And one of the comments about Withers having beaten up his first wife is disturbing. Say it ain’t so, Mr. “I Wish You Well”!) Withers’s accusation that CBS Records quit him, not the other way around, may explain why half of his studio albums still aren’t available on CD after all these years, which is a shame. But I do recommend his “Live at Carnegie Hall” album, which contains some great stage banter in addition to great performances.

    I loved the Gloria Steinem and Liberace jokes. Sheena’s transformation from squeaky-clean Aussie girl to Prince’s “Sugar Walls”-singing sex kitten in roughly three years is one hell of a career makeover. Didn’t she play Crockett’s wife during the last season of “Miami Vice”? Or the next-to-last season? Was she killed off? I seem to remember that being the case.

    “Basquiat” is a good movie, but I also don’t remember Courtney Love being in it. Wait, now I do. Or am I thinking of Tatum O’Neal? Oh well, they’re both in it. Maybe I should see it again. After seeing Jeffrey Wright in “Angels in America,” I realized that he should be allowed to be in any movie he wants to be in, because he’ll instantly make it better. He was the best thing in 2000’s “Shaft” remake/sequel, and he may be the best thing in “Live Free or Die Hard.”

    That remix of “Kiss on My List” is very chintzy, but the original version is still wonderful. However, I didn’t like “Voices” as an album. “Private Eyes,” on the other hand, is pretty great. Much like the Motown and Philly Soul artists they often emulated, Hall & Oates seemed much more adept at making terrific singles than terrific albums. But can you blame them? They toured constantly yet still put out an album a year between 1972 and 1982. As William DeVaughn once said, be thankful for what you got. Or, in the case of Jefitoblog, be thankful for what you had. Sigh …

  • BD

    OK, once and for all, how do I make paragraph breaks here? Two simple returns won’t do it. How about two shift-returns? Four returns? Four shift-returns?</p><p>Or maybe some code?

  • BD, my paragraph breaks show up if I’m using Safari as my browser. However, I can’t italicize words, hyperlink text, etc., on Safari. I also can’t view the YouTube clips on this browser. On Firefox I CAN view the clips, italicize, hyperlink, etc., but my paragraph breaks don’t show up. I just insert two “”s for every break and then Jason usually converts them to actual breaks when he gets the chance.

  • Robert, nobody attacks the Attacks like you attack the Attacks.  I loved both of those Police articles, and wish I had found them earlier so I could have included at least the 1986 recount one in the original post.  I agree that the writing style is a bit over-the-top, but still, I enjoyed it immensely.  The 1999 interview didn’t seem so bad, but I, too, wonder what precautions they have taken to ensure that this tour doesn’t go up in flames.  I imagine they’ll have an Eagles-type setup: they’ll see each other on stage and that’s it.

    BD and Robert, as for the paragraph breaks – this is some sort of WP glitch specific to jh.com.  My webguy, Rahul, is going to be fixing it, but he just had a baby so I’m leaving him alone for a couple of weeks.  When Robert’s posts come through, he usually adds a <br> in there and I do try and go in and clean them up.

    Sorry for the inconvenience and we’ll try to get it fixed soon.

  • I got back into the Police again last summer and started digging around for reviews of that documentary Stewart made in 2005, which I still haven’t seen. I then came across those two Vic Garbarini pieces. In the 1999 interview they do sound like they all still like each other and that it’s a good thing they broke up when they did (even though they never officially broke up, which has been a running joke between me and my brother for 20 years now), but Stewart’s constant needling and “fuck you—I’m just kidding” comments would get on my nerves too. I’ve known guys like that; they never learn.

    I think it was on the Police’s “Behind the Music” special that they discussed their first reunion, at Sting’s wedding to Trudie Styler in ’92. They were asked to play a few songs, which they were happy to do, but after one song the old tensions were already flaring up again onstage. They laugh about it, but there’s money at stake this year with this giant stadium tour. Like you said, they’ll probably just see each other onstage.

    Who hates who in the Eagles these days? I had no idea.

  • I think I want to see Copeland and Sting in a steel cage match – winner takes all, loser gets a lute shoved up their zinger. " " As for the Eagles, I think they’re all happy to milk the public every couple years with another goodbye tour. The rumor was that they were writing a new album, but that’s been a 5 year rumor. All I heard was that abysmal "Hole In The World " song." "Considering Henley had the most lucrative solo stint of all the members, he’s probably the crustiest about having to hook up again." " Don’t ya just hate it when your Henley is crusty? I do. " " DwD

  • Jhensy

    You young’uns must have been precisely the right nostalgic age for this one, but that’s a dreadful Top Ten for me. Every single song has me attacking the dial if it comes on in the car. Not even a guilty pleasure among them, and several (Styx and Sheena in particular) I consider war crimes. If I had to pick a fave it would be the Police or Blondie. Ugh.

  • jb

    It’s taken me nearly a week to find my way to this post (curse you, My Yahoo Beta RSS function), but thanks for the shoutout, and for this list, which reminds me of a trip The Mrs. (who was not yet The Mrs. back then) and I took to visit her parents in the Detroit suburbs (must have been spring break), listening to AM Top 40 stations all the way, including the mighty CKLW once we got there. “While You See a Chance” was on every two hours all across Indiana and Michigan, and for the whole week.

    That remix of “Kiss on My List” is terrific. (Better than a lot of the remixes at Born Again 80s, which is not an indictment of the site, but of the 80s sensibility that made people think dance clubs wanted a long version of “The Heat Is On” or “Too Late for Goodbyes.”)

  • J

    I totally loved “The Best of Times” back in the day, but then again, I’m quite a bit older than you are, and I was in High School. One would think that should mean I would know better. It doesn’t. Clearly. We saw Styx last year, and the bastards didn’t even PLAY IT. God, my life sucks.

    What’s kindof upsetting is that I pretty much know every lyric to all of these songs…again, my life sucks.

  • I’m pretty sure that Styx are trying to stay as far away from the songs that are really all about Dennis DeYoung.  Did they play "Babe" or "Lady?"

  • A great interview with Bill Withers (from February 2007) can be heard here:

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=7236327