Don’s Top 10 From May 4, 1980
Back…back…back into time, to the dawn of the 80s, and your local top 10 singles:
"Fire Lake" by Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band
(#7 last week) Bob initially wrote the lyrics for this way back in 1971, recorded it for his “Beautiful loser” album in 1975, but finally put it out as the first single from “Against The Wind”, with a little help from his pals Glenn Frey, Don Henley & Timothy B. Schmidt.
"I Pledge My Love" by Peaches & Herb
(#11 last week) This one did better locally than nationally, where it peaked at #19. One of those songs that has become a staple at weddings.
"Stomp!" by The Brothers Johnson
(#4 last week) One of my all-time favorites! Love snapping my fingers to this one. Brothers George & Louis spent time in Billy Preston's band, playing on his '72 smash “Outa Space”. This one was co-written by former Heatwave member Rod Temperton, who wrote many hits including “Rock With You” & “Thriller” for Michael Jackson, “Give Me The Night” (George Benson) & “Sweet Freedom” (Michael McDonald), & all three of Heatwave's million-sellers.
"Funkytown" by Lipps Inc.
(#9 last week) One of the greatest one-hit wonders EVER (impossible to hear it & not tap your toe), “Funkytown” was the brainchild of Minneapolis's Steven Greenburg, & lead vocals sung by a former police department secretary named Cynthia Johnson. Both still live there.
"With You I'm Born Again" by Billy Preston & Syreeta
(#6 last week) Not many people remember Syreeta Wright, but she was a lot more than just this one hit as an artist. She worked with Stevie Wonder for over 20 years, co-writing “Signed Sealed Delivered I'm Yours”, “If You Really Love Me” & “It's A Shame” (a hit for the Spinners). She also was married to Stevie, for only 18 months, but remained close friends with him.
"Lost In Love" by Air Supply
(#8 last week) Air Supply before they became AIR SUPPLY, a phrase for, you know, soft rock blandness. This is actually a very pretty song, & their debut hit.
"Sexy Eyes" by Dr. Hook
(#5 last week) Not too many people remember this ditty, but it was the #1 hit locally just three weeks later, reaching the top, something these guys from Union City, New Jersey (!) could never do nationally.
"Ride Like The Wind" by Christopher Cross
(#3 last week) Absurdly overpraised at first (Cross swept the 1981 Grammys), then absurdly overtrashed (accused of being the epitome of corporate schlock-pop-rock), Cross was completely off the radar of pop culture by 1985. Just now starting to get a reappraisal, mainly positive, from other musicians (not yet from critics).
"Another Brick In The Wall Part II" by Pink Floyd
(#2 last week) Aside from Led Zeppelin, there was no more “album-oriented” band than Pink Floyd, so it was a big surprise when they came up with a #1 hit single (something Zeppelin never did, although “Stairway To Heaven” probably would have been one if it had BEEN a single). The “wall” in Roger Waters' words was a metaphor for the band's slow separation from its audience as they grew more popular. The song's popularity is then VERY ironic.
"Call Me" by Blondie
(#1 last week; 4th week at #1) Producer/co-writer Giorgio Moroder originally offered this track to Stevie Nicks, but she was legally unable to record it. It really isn't “Blondie”, just Harry's vocals over Moroder's already completed instrumental track.