Don’s Top 10 From August 2, 1983
From the top of the gorilla building, The Time Machine lands on Tuesday, August 2, 1983. These were the top 10 singles:
(#9 last week) Co-produced by Duran Duran keyboardist Nick Rhodes, Kajagoogoo was a one-hit wonder here, but not in their native U.K., where they had two more top 10 singles in 1983. Their lead singer was Christopher Hamill, who changed his stage name to Limahl, an anagram of his surname. The band had changed their name from Art Nouveau to Kajagoogoo, which was created by phonetically writing out a baby's first sounds, which gave them 'GagaGooGoo' – and with a minor alteration, it became 'Kajagoogoo'.
(#7 last week) A surprise comeback hit for one of the all-time great British bands. "Come Dancing" is a tribute to Ray Davies' sister Rene who bought him his first guitar, with the song's lyrics affording Davies' sister a happy life denied her in reality. Living in Canada with her allegedly abusive husband, the 31-year-old Rene was visiting her parent's home on Ray's 13th birthday in 1957 — on which she surprised him with a gift of the Spanish guitar he'd tried to persuade his parents to buy him. On the evening of the same day, Rene — who had a weak heart — suffered a fatal heart attack while dancing at a ballroom.
(#5 last week) Eddy first hit the charts way back in 1968 as lead singer of The Equals, with the killer track "Baby Come Back" (Bonnie Raitt later covered that). It's kind of ironic that "Electric Avenue" is used in so many commercials, TV shows & movies because the song is about a nasty riot, the 1981 Brixton riot, where Electric Avenue can be found.
(#11 last week) "How Do You Keep the Music Playing?" is a song composed by Michel Legrand, with lyrics by Alan & Marilyn Bergman for the 1982 film "Best Friends" (it starred Burt Reynolds & Goldie Hawn), where it was introduced by Patti Austin and James Ingram. It was one of three songs with lyrics by Alan & Marilyn Bergman that was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Song at the 55th Academy Awards. They had a three out of five shot to win...& they lost, to "Up Where We Belong".
(#12 last week) Annie Lennox certainly stood out from the crowd, didn't she? Lennox's striking androgynous visual image, with close-cropped, orange-colored hair, & dressed in a man's suit brandishing a cane, immediately made her a household name. Her gender-bending image would be further explored in other Eurythmics videos such as "Love Is a Stranger" & "Who's That Girl?" As for the song, the original recording's main instrumentation featured a sequenced analog synthesizer riff, which Dave Stewart accidentally discovered in the studio when he played a bass track backwards.
(#8 last week) A return to form for the disco queen, which was a term Summer did NOT like, BTW. She wrote or co-wrote every track on the album this came from. A super-talented, very underrated artist.
(#4 last week) Philadelphia born & raised, Sembello was one of the top session musicians in the business before his one success on the singles chart, most notably with Stevie Wonder from 1974 to 1979. He plays electric & lead guitar on most of "Fulfillingness' First Finale" & "Songs In The Key Of Life".
(#3 last week) Giorgio Moroder originally recorded "Flashdance... What a Feeling" with Joe Esposito (he sang "Heaven Knows" with Donna Summer as lead singer of Brooklyn Dreams); Paramount Pictures asked Moroder to rework the song with a female artist to parallel the gender of the dancer who was the film's protagonist.
(#2 last week) Credit where credit is due department: the singers are Joe Pizzulo & Leza Miller. Mendes never sang lead on his hits. Surprise comeback, in a totally different style from the bossa nova pop he had been famous for in the late 60s. Written by the famous songwriting duo of Barry Mann & Cynthia Weil. They had originally given it to Earth, Wind & Fire, who passed. It was first recorded by Dionne Warwick.
(#1 last week; 4th week at #1) Sting doesn't get how this is thought of as a happy love song by so many. He later said he was disconcerted by how many people think the song is more positive than it is. He insists it's about the obsession with a lost lover, the jealousy and surveillance that follows. "One couple told me 'Oh we love that song; it was the main song played at our wedding!' I thought, 'Well, good luck.'" When asked why he appears angry in the music video Sting told BBC Radio 2, "I think the song is very, very sinister and ugly and people have actually misinterpreted it as being a gentle, little love song." However you think of it, it became one of the biggest hits of all time.