Don’s Top 10 From March 1, 1983
Back into the mists of time once again, as we travel to Tuesday, March 2, 1983. Let’s moonwalk with the local top 10 singles.
“Stray Cat Strut” by The Stray Cats
(#6 last week) When you think of the Stray Cats, you think “Rock This Town”, right? But many forget this toe-tapper, which was actually a bigger hit when first out, but has since almost been forgotten. Funny how things work out.
“Back On The Chain Gang” by The Pretenders
(#12 last week) Totally forgot this was movie music, & a great movie: Martin Scorcese’s “The King Of Comedy”, as prophetic a film as has ever been made, in terms of our society’s cult of celebrity, & boy, did it foreshadow “reality TV”. The song was originally written, though, about Chrissie Hynde’s relationship with Ray Davies of the Kinks. It then took on ANOTHER meaning when Pretenders guitarist James Honeyman-Scott died suddenly.
“Baby Come To Me” by Patti Austin & James Ingram
(#9 last week) A song written by former Heatwave member Rod Temperton & produced by the great Quincy Jones, it came & went quickly in the spring of 1982 but was revived when featured on “General Hospital”. BTW, Patti Austin was the co-vocalist (uncredited) on Frankie Valli’s 1975 local #1 hit, “Swearin’ To God”.
“Do You Really Want To Hurt Me” by Culture Club
(#10 last week) New wave trivia: Boy George briefly sang with Bow Wow Wow (“I Want Candy”). Culture Club was a prime example of the U.K.’s “New Romantic” movement, which was based around flamboyant, eccentric fashion & new wave music.
“Africa” by Toto
(#2 last week) The members of Toto were studio musicians prior to coming together, working with many major artists & playing on dozens of hits. Jeff Porcaro drummed for Sonny And Cher & Steely Dan.
“You Are” by Lionel Richie
(#8 last week) Catchier than I remember. The followup to “Truly”, this uptempo number was written by Lionel with his then-wife Brenda. Singing backup vocals, a then-unknown Richard Marx.
“Hungry Like The Wolf” by Duran Duran
(#5 last week) The video for this, evoking “Raiders Of The Lost Ark”, won the first Grammy for Best Short-Form Video. That’s Nick Rhodes’s girlfriend laughing at the beginning. This song started a 3 year run of hit after hit for DD.
“Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson
(#4 last week) This is already the #1 song nationally, but locally, we’re slightly slower to embrace this soon-to-be classic, surprisingly. Looking at MJ’s appearance on the Motown 25 special, it’s slightly less impressive that at first glance: he’s probably lip-synching.
“Pass The Dutchie” by Musical Youth
(#3 last week) I can’t wait to play this one again! A true lost hit, much bigger around here than nationwide, where it peaked at #10. I knew what “dutchie” meant, but, boy, those kids were young. Actually a remake of a song called “Pass The Kouchie”.
“Down Under” by Men At Work
(#1 last week; 5th week at #1) Do you really want to know what a vegemite sandwich is? A brewer’s yeast bread spread, hugely popular in Australia, but vile to most everyone else. The song, though: very, very catchy.