There's nothing like a song to take you back.

When you hear it, you're instantly transported back in time.

You know where you were, and what you were doing when you (first) heard it.

Phil Collins' "Don't Lose My Number" (#4/1985) is one of those songs that...really takes me back.

Look out I come., May 1985. (Craig Allen photo archives)

I had just graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with an "Honors" degree in Communications, as Phil's hit started cruising up the pop charts.

I scored my first post-college radio job, as a news anchor, and street reporter for a Central Jersey radio station (that no longer exists).

Yeah, I started out as a news guy.

As I hear "Don't Lose My Number," I'm cruising Route 22, Eastbound, the widows down on my first car, a 1985 Mitsubishi Mirage.  Phil Collins is blasting out of my radio speakers.

I'm on my way to Elizabeth, NJ to cover the Union County Freeholders.  Will they sell that big government-run healthcare facility to a private company? (yes)

Phil Collins plays on...

At my first Woodbridge Town Council meeting, one of the newspaper reporters is bringing me "up to speed." He says: "See the young guy on the end? That's Jim McGreevey. He's ambitious. He'll probably be governor someday."

As, Phil plays on...

I'm in Somerville, covering the Somerset County Freeholders.  I'm talking with Christine Todd Whitman.  It took time for me to be comfortable referring to her as "Christie." I do remember that first radio interview. I don't remember what we talked about, but Christie was wearing a blue and white plaid skirt, sporting pig-tails. Not the look we remember from her years in the statehouse.

"Don't Lose My Number" really takes me back.

Don't lose this album. (Craig Allen photo)

By 1987, I would move from news radio to music radio...

"DJ Craig" in the newspaper, on my birthday in 1987. (Craig Allen photo archives)

...and I'd plug my headphones in at stations all over New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania...before coming "home"...

On NJ101.5 on my birthday in 2002. (Craig Allen photo archives) play "New Jersey's Greatest Hits" on the weekends, on New Jersey 101.5.

Including Phil Collins.

I LOVE vinyl...Side 2, Song #1. (Craig Allen photo)

"Don't Lose My Number" really takes me back, to the "Big Decade."

Good times.

What song is is an instant "time machine" for you?

Check Out the Best-Selling Album From the Year You Graduated High School

Do you remember the top album from the year you graduated high school? Stacker analyzed Billboard data to determine just that, looking at the best-selling album from every year going all the way back to 1956. Sales data is included only from 1992 onward when Nielsen's SoundScan began gathering computerized figures.

Going in chronological order from 1956 to 2020, we present the best-selling album from the year you graduated high school.